Sunday, September 07, 2008

English First

From Joanne Jacobs:

English Learner students were excelling in Diamond Lakes, a half-Hispanic school district in northern Illinois. The percentage of ELs reading proficiently had soared from 33 percent in 2004 to 71 percent; math proficiency rose from 49 percent to 79 percent. Then the state cut off funding, discovering that Diamond Lakes had dropped bilingual classes in favor of teaching in English with extra support in Spanish only as needed. After a big fight, the district got its EL funding back. Superintendent Roger Prosise explains what works (pdf) on the Lexington Institute site.
Good for them. "...extra support in Spanish only as needed." Immersion works for children and adults.  

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