Language diversity

  • Lucia BUTTARO (Adelphi University USA)
    Effective Bilingual Education Models
    2014, Vol. XIX-2, pp. 29-40

    Spanish-speaking children take their ethnolinguistic and sociocultural heritage to school. School culture requires socialization and learning solely in English. Spanish-speaking students’ success depends on their ability to learn English and process subject matter in English effectively. Doing so means that students are grade-level proficient in English. But Spanish-speaking students are not developing English literacy accordingly. The English-only approach in educating Spanish-speaking students is ineffective and accounts primarily for the dropout rates of these children in the five Southwestern states of Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico and Texas. Bilingual education, many witnesses feel, would enable Spanish-speaking children to use the home language and culture to adapt positively to the culture of the school and learn content area material.