Making the Case for Spanish at School Defenders of Bilingual Education Rally in an Effort to Defeat California Ballot Initiative

By Daniel B. Wood, writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, March 13, 1998 | Go to article overview

Making the Case for Spanish at School Defenders of Bilingual Education Rally in an Effort to Defeat California Ballot Initiative


Daniel B. Wood, writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


At first glance, this border town of 22,000 has all the makings for social and educational disaster: high gang activity, high drug and alcohol abuse, 25 to 30 percent unemployment, and low income - only $12,000 per family, on average.

But because of innovative policies set in motion nearly 30 years ago, the small district's 11 public schools have become a national model of success in bilingual education - sending 93 percent of a recent high school class to college. Now, with countrywide debate swirling over moves to ditch bilingual programs and immerse students in English only - fueled, in part, by a California ballot initiative - Calexico's long-term success has moved to the front of the debate.

"If bilingual education can be made to work in this town, it can work anywhere in California or America," says Gloria Celaya, principal of Main Elementary School here. The California ballot measure pressing the issue is Proposition 227, a citizens' initiative that would end bilingual-education programs in Calexico and across the nation's most-populous state. Under the initiative, the 1.4 million students with limited English proficiency (LEP) - more than half the national total - would be placed in regular classrooms after only one year of English language instruction. With the considerable funds of initiative sponsor and wealthy California businessman Ron Unz behind it, Prop. 227 quickly grabbed steady media coverage with its message that the state's 30-year experiment with bilingual education has failed. But with the vote roughly two months away, the anti-Prop. 227 forces are joining together to fight back. And as voters take a closer look at the fine print, poll results have begun to shift just as they did in the final months before other precedent-setting initiatives here. At a late February gathering in Dallas of 20 of the largest Hispanic organizations in the United States, members of the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA) urged California voters to reject the measure as "dangerous and extreme." "History has proven that English-only instruction harms Hispanic students in several ways," says Arturo Vargas, chairman of NHLA. "It makes the acquisition of English difficult and frustrating. It unnecessarily delays academic subject matter learning. It prevents parents with limited-English skills from actively participating in their children's schooling. And it sharply increases the rate at which Hispanic students drop out." Instead of throwing out the many varied programs of bilingual education that have not worked, Prop. 227 opponents ask, why not model programs after the successes of Calexico? Indeed, 80 percent of the 7,000 students in Calexico are LEP, yet the Hispanic dropout rate there is half the state average. Main reasons for success A tour of the 650-student Main elementary facility reveals a long list of reasons for success: highly trained bilingual teachers; involvement by parents, teachers, and the broader community; and widespread programs to deal with student's emotional concerns and social skills. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Making the Case for Spanish at School Defenders of Bilingual Education Rally in an Effort to Defeat California Ballot Initiative
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.