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Teach Migrant Children English -- Bilingual Ed Is a Scam

: Betsy Mccaughey on

New York City, Denver, Chicago and other cities are urgently recruiting bilingual education teachers as the children of migrants enroll in school. Bilingual ed will doom most of these kids to failure. All too often it's an educational ghetto, producing dropouts who can't speak English and face a lifetime of poverty.

Non-English-speaking students should be given intense instruction in English when they first arrive at school and then mainstreamed to classrooms where students are taught only in English.

The educational establishment says stressing English competency is "xenophobic."

But immigrant parents deserve the truth, not political indoctrination.

They need to know that nationwide, only 4% of eighth graders and 3% of 12th graders with limited English proficiency are proficient in math and reading, according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress test scores. A staggering 80% have no grasp of either subject. Imagine the limited future they have.

New York advertises a Parents' Bill of Rights, telling parents of English language learners that they can keep their children "continuously enrolled year to year" in bilingual education.

 

Truth is, bilingual education is not a "right." It's a wrong.

Buffalo is one of the poorest cities in the U.S., and poverty there afflicts native-born residents and migrants alike. Yet students in bilingual programs are less than half as likely to graduate as students taught in English.

Learning English is the civil rights issue of our time.

For the first time ever in American history, 15.5% of people are foreign born, more even than in the 1890s and the 1910s. Now is the time to get language instruction right, not double down on failure.

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