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Bilingual Education

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Bilingual Education

Education is very important. There use to be a time when you didn't have to go to school. When it was only important for men to have an education. Times have really changed. Now it is crucial for everyone in our society to have an education. Survival is the main reason: a cohesive society is another. Our schools today need to keep Bilingual education as a tool for teaching: not only for the sake of our society but also for the sense of our culture.

Bilingual education in our schools is crucial: but still there is talk about banning the use of foreign language in the instruction of our young children. We have to work to change that kind of attitude. We have to proceed from the assumption that bilingual

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education is a sound educational proposition for all children and that it addresses the needs of all the constituencies of education. Now more than ever the words of Thomas Jefferson ring with special meaning: in 1977, in a letter to his nephew, Jefferson said: "Bestow great attention on Spanish and endeavor to acquire an accurate knowledge of it. Our future connections with Spain and Spanish America will render that language a valuable acquisition. The ancient history of that part of America, too, is written in that language". (qt. in A Relook '66).

Hispanic leaders should plan an initiative to help Hispanic youths do better in school.

It's a coming-together as a community to deal with a very pressing issue. The organizations should be composed of public officials,


students, educators, administrators, and business people and should try to determine the

biggest problems facing Latino students in their community.

These groups need to work together to develop a statewide agenda. Hispanic students, according to some studies, lag behind other students in classroom performance; have the highest dropout rate of any ethnic group in the country; and, according to federal data, are less likely to pursue higher learning(Tucson '66). We as a society, need to have a school system that prepares our students for higher education if that is their choice. Society needs to work together to change the educational process for Latino students. Consider these numbers, which we drew from As A Relook at Tucson '66 states" Minority groups are being shortchanged by more than 200,000 teaching jobs in the public


elementary and secondary schools of the nation. In 1972, the enrollment of the nation's public

schools was 44.6 million. As a relook at Tucson '66 states, the number of English speakers in the Western Hemisphere is only slightly larger than that of Spanish speakers. By the year 2000 the number of Spanish speakers will be far greater than the number of english speakers. Statistics indicate that the United States is now one of the major Spanish-American countries. One statistical example: If the figures on illegal Mexican aliens are correct, that means that every year the United States adds another city the size of Albuquerque and Tucson combined. Or, put it another way, it adds another state larger in population than Wyoming and Alaska combined"(a relook at Tucson 14).


The policy of most governments toward bilingualism in the home is and long has been one of neglect. A few countries actively encourage it, especially if the "second" (non-community) language is the more important language in the country or in the world, or if the "minority" (community) language is the language of a group given special consideration under the law. Many countries, which have recently been colonies, for example, encourage their young people to learn the language of their former "Mother Country", because bilingualism of this type is important in international trade and politics. However, we could find castles full of research and still very little is being done in public


schools to improve and enforce bilingual education. We have to use the research being conducted about bilingual education and improve bilingual education. Some public schools want to stop bilingual education, saying that it's detrimental to students but they don't put any consideration in improving it, or educating themselves on the needs of not just Latino but all children. All bilingual children deserve further discussion on the issues of culture, immigration, ethnicity and adjustment.

Truly bilingual workers, proficient in English and a second language, will be more valuable and marketable as global trade continues to grow. With these facts in mind, some states are launching a visionary effort to develop a dual-language work force. The idea is to convince local school districts to offer a second


language beginning at the prekindergarten level and encourage employers to help adults learn another language.

Spanish is an obvious second-language choice for many because of the rapid growth of Hispanics in our country. The relationship with Mexico and Latin America will grow stronger if businesses take advantage of their position and opportunity. More than 22,500,000 of our countries population already speaks Spanish However, officials cite a growing demand for more Spanish-speaking professionals.

The future work force would be better positioned to build international connections if most professionals had a second language. Students would gain a better understanding of the world by learning another language.


Pursuing a dual-language work force is a sound idea that will boost the countries' economy and personally benefit its individuals.

We as a society should encourage local school districts, businesses and civic-minded groups to embrace the effort. We must try to build a society were human diversity is promoted and not destroyed.

The key to program improvement is not in finding a program that works for all children and all localities, or finding a program component (such as native language instruction) that works as some sort of "magic bullet," but rather finding a set of program components that works for the children in the community of interest, given the goals,



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