At Senn High School, Diversity Drives Education

“We have to get creative,” Lofton said. “There is no teacher that we could possibly find that could deliver ESL education as we know it, from the past. We have to look for ways the kids can communicate amongst themselves—non-verbal expression or acting out.”

Almost 40 percent of Senn’s students were born outside of the United States; they hail from over 55 countries — including the Philippines, Afghanistan and Belize. The students speak 35 different languages at home. The school reports that Senn used to be in the Guinness Book of World Records for the “Most Diverse School in the United States.”