Include bilingual instruction for all students in ESEA reauthorization

A commentary in Education Week supporting expanded bilingual education in ESEA reauthorization:

While employers are clamoring for bilingual or even multilingual employees for an increasingly globalized economy, U.S. schools turn out relatively few students who are even somewhat competent in a second language. Hard figures are unavailable, but we know that only 5 percent of the 4.2 million Advanced Placement exams given in 2014 were in a foreign language, and only slightly more than half these students scored a 4 or a 5. That’s about 100,000 students—about six-tenths of 1 percent of the country’s nearly 16 million high school students. Most egregiously, instead of maintaining and building on the home-language abilities of 11 million students in our public schools, we actually attempt to quash them, if only by neglect.

Education Week: Congress: Bilingualism Is Not a Handicap

Seal of Biliteracy

Support the Seal of Biliteracy in Massachusetts! Support An Act to Establish a State Seal of Biliteracy H.422/S.336 and An Act relative to Language Opportunity for Our Kids (LOOK) H.498/S.262.

“A lot of businesses want to know, ‘Do you know Chinese? And how do I know you know?’ And you can have your certificate as verification.”

NPR: On The High School Diploma: A ‘Bilingual’ Stamp Of Approval?

LOOK Bill – Letters to the Editor

Two Letters to the Editor were published in The Boston Globe in support of the March 31 Globe editorial on the LOOK Bill:

Double Standard for Bilingualism?

“Bilingualism is often seen as “good” when it’s rich English speakers adding a language as a hobby or another international language, but “bad” when it involves poor, minority, or indigenous groups adding English to their first language, even when the same two languages are involved.”

New Research on Bilingualism and the Brain

New research shows that bilingualism leads to structural changes in the grey matter and white matter of the brain, in response to the increased demands of juggling information between two languages.

Opportunity for Bilingual Interpreters

Found in Translation is a Boston area program that provides training, free of charge, to bilingual women who earn very low incomes so they can become bilingual medical interpreters, opening up new economic opportunities for the women and their families.