The U.S. policy regarding education has had repeated pendulum swings regarding whether our children should be educated in English only or encouraged to learn in a second language early on.
New America Ed Central has done a 10-part series on this topic. This week’s part, “What do English-only laws mean for Dual Language Learners?” highlights the bipolar nature of state laws.
“In 2000, Proposition 203 passed in Arizona. Similar to California’s law, this measure repealed existing bilingual education laws,” it says. Meanwhile, “the “California Multilingual Education Act” is on the ballot in 2016. ”
However, our international competitors in North Africa, Asia and elsewhere are educating their children in their own language as well as English. This gives them a marketable advantage on the world stage of employment. “Abu Dhabi has seen a huge increase in the supply from 93 English-medium international schools five years ago to 514 last month.” according to an article in the Professionals in International Education website.
So the real question is, where should the U.S. education be? English only? Or dual or multilingual?