Dual Language Learning

Dual language learning is where children learn literacy, culture, and content in two languages, typically English and a partner language spoken in the community. It is the most effective model for closing opportunity gaps, especially for children who speak a first language other than English and historically marginalized populations.

Dual Language Designation

The Fair Start for Kids Act directs DCYF to establish a Dual Language Designation for licensed or certified providers accepting state subsidy who participate in Early Achievers, ECEAP, and/or Early ECEAP.

  • The designation will help families find culturally appropriate care for their children ages birth through pre-kindergarten.
  • Funding is available to help eligible providers build and/or enhance linguistic support in learning environments.
  • Providers who request a designation in the first year will be considered “early adopters” and will have the opportunity to inform future system improvements.

Request a Dual Language Designation

Dual language programs and tribal revitalization programs may request the designation through the Quality Recognition process in Early Achievers.

To be eligible for a Dual Language Designation, programs must:

  • Participate in Early Achievers.
  • Serve multilingual children and families.
  • Have at least one bilingual staff providing instruction in English and a partner language or are a tribal language revitalization program.
  • Starting April 2023 - Submit a request for designation in Washington’s Coach and Educator Community Interface, CeCi (formerly Coaching Companion).

Dual Language Designation Frequently Asked Questions

$2.8  million is available to establish and/or enhance Dual Language Designation programs for the fiscal year 2023. Funding beyond 2023 may be available.

While funding permits, all awards are per classroom or learning environment. For tribal programs, awards are per language revitalization learning environment.

Facilities may be awarded for up to 10 classrooms or learning environments per fiscal year, while funding permits..

Type Award
Per dual language learning environment/classroom $2,700
Per language revitalization learning environment/classroom $4,100


The funding is for building and/or enhancing learning environments for multilingual children. Funding can be used for:

  • Wages for staff providing bilingual instruction
  • Professional development and staff training
    • Professional development can include PLCs, job-embedded planning, substitute coverage for planning time, and/or paid time to attend PD
  • Culturally and linguistically appropriate curricula and accompanying training programs
  • Instructional materials
  • Other related expenses

Terms and Conditions:

By accepting a funding award, I (the Early Achievers facility/site) agree to the following:

  1. Should my facility be awarded a Dual Language Designation award, I will only spend the funds on what is allowable.
  2. I will keep receipts from purchases made with the Dual Language Designation award funds for seven (7) years.
  3. I understand that DCYF may ask me to provide receipts for purchases made with money from dual language award, and if I cannot provide receipts and documentation when asked, I will be required to repay part or all of the award to the State of Washington.

Programs may request the designation through the Quality Recognition process in Early Achievers.

The designation is expected to open in Spring 2023.  

All providers will use the CeCi website to request the Dual Language Designation.

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DCYF will look at the following factors when distributing funding:

  • Tribal Language
  • Zip Code
    • Extreme child care access deserts
    • Marginalized low-income
      • High child maltreatment
      • High childhood poverty
      • Rural counties
    • Communities of Color
      • Over 50% children of color under age 15

For more information, visit Child Care Stabilization Zip Code Factors.

All providers must have an active Statewide Vendor Number (SWV) to receive payment.

You can check the status of your SWV number on the DCYF Statewide Vendor Number page.

Payments will be distributed to eligible programs 90 days after receiving their Designation in CeCi.

WIDA develops and provides proven tools and support to help multilingual learners, and their educators, succeed.

WIDA Early Years

Washington State is part of the WIDA Early Years Consortium, which promotes educational equity for multilingual learners through language development standards, assessments, and high-quality professional learning.

WIDA Resources

All early learning providers in Washington State have access to informational webinars about free self-paced eLearning and printable materials through WIDA. There is no cost to create an account or access the resources.

Access Resources

Printer-friendly instructions

To access resources you need a WIDA account. Login or create an account: 

  1. Go to https://wida.wisc.edu/login
  2. Select WIDA Secure Portal
  3. Follow the directions to create a WIDA Secure Portal account
  4. You will receive a confirmation email to finalize setup of your WIDA Secure Portal account
  5. Follow the directions in the email and click the link to confirm your account and setup a password.
  6. After you are logged in to the WIDA Secure Portal, select “Professional Learning” from the menu.
  7. Learn more about the available courses by selecting “Course Details,” and click “Enroll Now” to enter the course!
  8. Next time you wish to access Early Years eLearning courses, go to the WIDA Secure Portal from the login page at portal.wida.us (return to this login page each time you wish to visit the WIDA Secure Portal).