Language, education and young people are all very dear to me and I have been reading some interesting articles this week about the children of immigrants here in the US and the language they prefer to speak and the language they are being taught. As a matter of fact, the results are staggering as to what the young people are asking for having been born and raised here or even those brought over by their parents.
We really need to start getting the facts concerning languages and our country and its rights. I can write this article without any conviction because I was raised overseas and went to all Spanish schools and was never offered the opportunity to learn in English, why should I? I was in Colombia, South America; they were not worried about whether or not I needed an education in English or whether I even spoke Spanish. After all, I had chosen to go there which meant that their standards did not change; I would be taught in Spanish.
I have been an educator for years and the facts are there for the schools where we offer bilingual education, we are handicapping the children to never learn properly. In California alone there are more than 10 high schools that have over 40% of the teens still not proficient in English, just imagine what it is in other states as well. The other statistic in California shows that more than 2.5 million kids statewide have failed because of bilingual education. The other sad thing is that teachers with years of experience are being pushed out of their jobs because they don't speak Spanish and those who spoke Spanish were being offered a $5000 bonus to keep their students in Spanish instead of English.
The ironic thing is that as a teacher and a parent, I have said for years that we need to stop the injustice not only against our teachers and schools but mainly against the non-native English speaking student. Trust me as a language teacher; in order for the student or anyone to learn a language properly, immersion is the only way to learn it both effectively and quickly.
Many of the immigrants who come here bring their children for education because they want them to learn English. That is why they make the sacrifice, however they come over and then we put them in bilingual education and they are trying to function in a false world.
Children have even been interviewed and when asked what country they live in, many of them responded Mexico because they could not tell the difference as to what they have now and what they had then. The reason for that is because everything is all in Spanish in school, where they shop, live and function, etc.
We need to get more involved and encourage our schools and districts to look at these facts and do what is best for the student and not what one man happens to convince America. As a matter of fact, if you look into the facts carefully, you will find that the man who is advocating so much that we need to keep bilingual education is profiting from a $500 million dollar business.
So, how is it in your state or country? Let me hear from you this week!