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World Language Immersion

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The Magnet Immersion Program at Westdale Middle School was created to teach sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students through an “immersed” world language curriculum.  Activities related to the French, Mandarin, and Spanish languages and cultures in which they are spoken are incorporated into the daily curriculum.

At Westdale Middle School, immersion students take math, science, social studies, and literature in the second languages of French, Mandarin or Spanish. A few students are enrolled in classes for both languages.  Immersion instruction is 95% in Spanish, Mandarin, or French and taught by highly qualified native speakers from Spain, Columbia, Cuba, France, Guadeloupe, and Martinique. The goal of the immersion program at WMS is to teach students to be fluent in a target language other than English and to gain the skills necessary to understand and communicate in that language.

Teaching in a second language requires more visual and application activities because of the additional difficulty of teaching unit concepts in the second language. Teachers speak only the target language to teach academic subjects, using a wide range of instructional strategies and materials. Students must speak in the second language even when chatting with each other.  In addition to the immersion program activities, magnet students enjoy all of the school-wide opportunities offered at Westdale Middle. Many of the students are also in the talented, gifted, or Great Scholars Academy classes.

In order to participate in the program, students must meet all magnet school requirements, plus be fluent Spanish, Mandarin, and/or French speakers.  Most of the immersion students came to Westdale Middle School from BRFLAIM, a very successful elementary immersion program. Westdale also offers a Heritage Language Program for students with a home language of Spanish.  The students in this program come to us from many different elementary schools across the parish. The program has become a very hard working and successful part of the overall program at Westdale.

For more information, contact Magnet Program Site Coordinator, Dena Nabers at 924-1308 or at

Getting To Know Us:

Dena Nabers
Magnet Coordinator

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Louisiana & EBR School District Middle School

Student Of The Year!

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Madilyn Nichole Whitmore is the middle school Louisiana Student of the Year winner. This bilingual student attends Westdale Middle in East Baton Rouge Parish (BESE District 6) where she excels academically and as a leader in her school student government association, soccer, track, and STEM competition team. Three years ago, concerned for the health of her goldendoodle pet, this young entrepreneur created a successful dog treat business which she continues to operate. Whitmore wants to pursue a career as a biochemist or biomedical engineer after completing studies at either Harvard University, Spelman College, Stanford University or Howard University. She states, “It is the progress, not the perfection that matters.” -LDOE


Our Trip To New York City (Spring 2024)


Magnet Schools of America Teacher of The Year! 


Join us in congratulating CRISTINA MANZANARES MARISCAL She has been named Magnet Schools of America Teacher of the Year Region V Magnet Teacher of the Year (TOY) Award annually recognizes an outstanding, dedicated fulltime teacher who exemplifies excellence in academic achievement and executes innovative programs that promote equity and diversity for students in magnet schools. Ms. Cristina Manzanares Mariscal has been acknowledged by peers, parents and students for exemplary contributions made to the profession. She inspires students of all backgrounds and abilities to learn. The award honors a teacher who has demonstrated excellence in the teaching profession, community, and parental involvement. Check out her Congratulatory Billboards on I-10 and around town!

Louisiana Student of The Year Finalist!


 Congratulations to EBR Student of the Year Madilyn Whitmore, of Westdale Middle School, for being the Grade 8 finalist for Region 6 in the Louisiana Students of the Year Program. Madilyn and seven other finalists for her grade level will be honored at a reception at 6 p.m. April 10 at the River City Branch Library. #WeAreEBR #ebrschools

Today is a day of celebration and excitement as we have some fantastic news to share with you all. 

I am thrilled to announce my 7th-grade Spanish immersion class has been selected as a State Winner in the 2023-2024 Solve for Tomorrow National competition. 


State Winners were selected from among 300 State Finalist public middle and high schools who submitted detailed lesson plans outlining how their students propose using STEM to address an important community issue.


We are now in the running to become one of the ten National Finalists! This is a massive achievement and as such I am asking you to please congratulate my students on this outstanding accomplishment (Domingo Carrasquel, Chelsea Castellanos, Kenna Cruz, Jayda Hunt, Autumn James, Scarlet Sanchez, Ashley Sevilla-Lara, Sara Soriano, Kimberli Torres)


As our students move on to the national competition, they'll be representing not just our school, and our district,  but our entire state. Let's show them our full support and wish them the best of luck as they continue to move into the competition. 

#SamsungSolve  #MagnetSchoolsMonth

WAFB's Interview With Madeline!

Maddie is truly a SUPER STAR! She continues to SHINE BRIGHT! 

Le Grand Pique-Nique: Smashing Success for Westdale

Westdale was thrilled and honored to be selected by @codofil to be co-host at this year’s @legrandpiquenique! We had over 650 parents, students, volunteers and sponsors from 13 immersion schools represented from across the state! The event would not have been the smashing success that it was without Westdale’s French immersion teachers and student volunteers. We are so proud!

Sugar Cannes Festival - Feb 2024

Back-to-Back Brilliance: Mr. Toscano's 7th Graders Shine Again in STEM Competition!

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"I'm thrilled to share that a group of my 7th-grade students have achieved state finalist in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow National Competition for the second consecutive year, placing above hundreds of other schools in the nation.  

This is a competition that challenges US public school students in grades 6-12 to explore the role that science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) can play in solving some of the major issues in their local communities.


We're proud to be the only middle school in the state with this achievement, highlighting our leadership in STEM education. This success comes with a $2500 prize package for the classroom, including valuable Samsung products, recognizing our students' hard work and ingenuity.


As we gear up for the national competition against high schools from across Louisiana and other states, your continued support and encouragement mean the world to our students!" - Mr. Toscano

We are so PROUD of the work that Mr. Toscano & our students are doing! Keep up the amazing work!!! 

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We're thrilled to announce that our language immersion program has hit its goal of funding the first language podcast initiative in our school history! 🌟 

A massive thank you to all our donors for their incredible generosity and ongoing support of our mission. 🙌 We can't wait to see the amazing impact this project will have on our students. Special shoutout to Dr. Barthelemy, Dr. Bohn, and Mr. Toscano for their direct involvement and dedication. 🎤🌐 Stay tuned for updates on this thrilling educational journey! #LanguagePodcast #EducationMatters #CommunitySupport

Our Language Immersion Garden is a
2023 Certified Schoolyard Habitat !

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We are thrilled to announce and extend our heartfelt congratulations to the Language Immersion Garden for achieving our latest certification as a 2023 Certified Schoolyard Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF). As America's largest wildlife conservation and education organization, the NWF recognizes the remarkable efforts of the garden in transforming the schoolyard into a thriving wildlife habitat. 


By joining the ranks of over 5,000 schools nationwide, Westdale Middle is now a vital part of the movement to provide essential elements for wildlife, including natural food sources, clean water, cover, and places to raise young. This certification not only underscores the commitment to ecological sustainability but also establishes the garden as an invaluable outdoor education site. 


Congratulations to the students, teachers, and community for fostering an environment where students can actively engage in cross-curricular learning in a hands-on and impactful way.

Samsung Competition

Solve for Tomorrow is a national competition that challenges U.S. public school students in grades 6-12 to explore the role science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) can play in solving some of the biggest issues in their local communities.

Among hundreds of schools nationwide, 7th-grade Spanish Immersion Math students participated in the contest and reached the state finals, which resulted in receiving national recognition and a prize package of $2,500.

Teacher: Mauricio Toscano

Students: Angge Antunez, Lincoln Boies, Emily Castorena, Joshua Cruz, Kaylee Cruz, Erwin de Paz, Juliet Kent, Reya Slack, Madilyn Whitmore

Student Project Abstract: 


According to global statistics, the third leading cause of unintentional injury death is accidental drowning. In the United States alone, around 4,000 fatal drownings happen every year, which translates to approximately an average of 11 people drowning every day according to estimates from the CDC.

While anyone can drown, it is more common among kids ages 0 to 18. In fact, drowning is the leading cause of death among children ages 0 to 4. 


Our students' challenge was to develop an affordable, practical, sustainable system that would alert businesses and homeowners whenever an object falls in the water. Our solution to this challenge is the “Submerged Solutions.” This product is an eco-friendly, sustainable drowning-detecting system that uses solar panels, rechargeable batteries, and infrared sensors to operate and detect an object falling into the water.


Our vision is to mitigate and minimize drowning rates by providing a practical, environmentally, sustainable, affordable, and easily customizable alert system solution that would automatically alert homeowners and businesses of any possible drowning accidents and as such reduce the number of deaths, particularly among young children.


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