2022 Students who earned DESE Seal of Biliteracy

Welcome to the World Language Department

The Somerville Public Schools is devoted to the understanding of other nations and cultures, including the use of non-English languages. Our World Language program is built on the cultural and linguistic diversity of our students and their families. We believe that students who learn another language reach higher academic performance, display greater cognitive benefits, and develop a more positive attitude toward the target language and the speakers of that language.

The Somerville Public Schools World Language Department is committed to providing all World Language students equal access to our program. We strive to provide multicultural perspectives, including the perspectives of cultural influences less commonly taught. World Language classes  provide a broader view of cultures, products and perspectives and make connections to diverse cultures, students’ cultures and the community. 

Our language program is focused on language proficiency. Proficiency-based language instruction is student-centered and builds on what students already know and can do to communicate in the target language. The American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) guidelines identifies these proficiency levels as Novice, Intermediate, Advanced and Superior. 


K–12 World Language Supervisor

Dr. Lisa DaCunha Machnik


Grades 7 and 8 Spanish Teachers

Paola Prada, Argenziano School

Naomi Specter, East Somerville Community School and NW/FC

Alzimara Oliveira, Healey School

Valerie Salicrup, Kennedy School

Haydee Delgado, West Somerville Neighborhood School

Michelle Roberts, Winter Hill Community Innovation School


Somerville High School Language Teachers

Becca Bowen, Spanish        

Gino Colantuono, Italian            

Catherine McGuiness, French and Spanish         

David Piper, Spanish            

TBD, Spanish        

Matthew Landry, French            

Serena Steele, Italian and Spanish            

Giuseppe Formato, Portuguese 


World Language Video

Learn more about world language options at Somerville High School by watching this video featuring SHS students and staff. 


Middle Grades Course of Study

Somerville Public Schools is currently implementing a pilot at several schools, that includes a more robust curriculum and increased classroom time for middle graders with instruction beginning in 7th grade. Students in grades K-8 may also enroll in the UNIDOS Spanish / English Immersion Program at the East Somerville Community School.

High School Course of Study

Somerville High School students may choose from French, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish courses. Our curriculum is based upon the Massachusetts Foreign Language Curriculum Frameworks as well as the national ACTFL standards. Portuguese is offered to students at Full Circle High School.

World Language in High School

Please visit the Somerville High School World Language page to learn more.