MCALLEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — A third-grader from McAllen Independent School District won a national essay competition for bilingual writers.

Andrea Linette Rodriguez attends Sanchez Elementary as a third grader and took first place in the National Association for Bilingual Education 2023 Being Bilingual Essay Competition.  

Rodriguez demonstrated promise as a bilingual speaker and writer in her essay “The Language of Home.”

“I grew up in two worlds, one in English y otro en espanol (and one in Spanish),” she began in her essay. “I’m proud that my brain has two words for family and home because I’m from both sides of the border.” 

Rodriguez is in a dual-language class at Sanchez Elementary, according to McAllen ISD.

A release from the district stated, in a dual-language classroom, students learn their lessons in two languages. Students in a dual language setting, learn to read, write and speak in two languages English and Spanish.

Rodriguez will read her essay in both English and Spanish at the NABE 2023 Awards Luncheon, scheduled for Feb. 24 in Portland, Oregon.