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Bilingual Education

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Bilingual Education

Bilingual Education is the teaching of two languages. This would also be the ability to speak two languages. During the 1920's testing among various groups of people began. These tests were conducted in poor testing conditions, overcrowded rooms, poor lighting, and large rooms with poor audibility. Many immigrants were categorized as "simpletons" for receiving zeros on the test because they were unable to speak English, could not read, and were unfamiliar with the American culture. The low-test scores confirmed white Anglo Saxon Protestant beliefs that immigrants were inferior. This gave the congressmen more reason to discriminate against the immigrants. In the 1950's, federal and state laws ruled that discriminatory testing was unconstitutional (What To Do About Immigration? p 327). Bilingual education did not originally grow from the pressures of immigration. It was started as a small, federally funded program to help Mexican-American children (largely native-born) in the Southwest. The purpose was to try to make Mexican-American children fully literate in English.

Today, our expectations of bilinguals are very high. We expect them to learn our language fast and accurately. However, we do not teach them well. Instead of running away from this problem by abolishing bilingual education, we should find a way to improve this practice in order to make it a part of our culture.

People with a native language other than English have two goals in school: learning English and mastering content. A very big problem is that bilingual education is taught in many different ways in classrooms. Often, students with limited English skills would be taught for no more than a year in special English classes before being moved to mainstream. Some students are pulled out of English as a second language. Others are placed in transitional bilingual education, which is intensive English-instruction. A portion ...

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Keywords: bilingual education act, bilingual education policy, bilingual education institute, bilingual education definition, bilingual education programs, bilingual education benefits, bilingual education in the united states, bilingual education essay

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