The Official Language Movement – Essay Example
Running Head: THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE MOVEMENT The Official Language Movement The Official Language Movement
The Hispanic population in America is getting bigger and currently forms 13 per cent of the total American Population (U.S. Census Bureau, 2009). Many Hispanic students who attend school may face problems with English language. It is for this very reason the official language movement began. The movement suggests that bilingual education should be provided to support students speaking other languages. This movement have a lot of support from children basic human and civil rights (Rethinking Schools, 2010). They believe that it is the right of every student to be able to get education in the language s/he understands better and should not be denied the right to education on the basis of ethnicity and culture (Rethinking Schools, 2010).
However, the movement has faced just as much opposition from immigrant parents. They believe that introducing bilingual education will prevent their children from getting higher education as they will required to compete with other English speaking student in college and universities which will put them at disadvantage if their ability to understand and converse in English is weak (Frerking, 1997), and has resulted in an increased number of Hispanic dropouts (Porter, 1998). This is true because compared to the rate of dropouts of African American and non-Hispanic whites is much lower (Porter, 1998).
A number of people also believe that the only schools support bilingual education is to secure jobs for Hispanic teachers and get federal funds for programs that do not help children (Peek, 2010). It is true that the government spends millions of dollars every year to support bilingual education programs but there is no evidence to support the claim that schools introduce these programs for federal funds. Teaching other languages is important in order to preserve them but equal efforts should be made o teach these student English so they are able to compete with other English speaking students in future.
Frerking, B. (1997, November 16). Immigrant parents join campaign against bilingual education. Retrieved September 28, 2010, from CRPC: http://www.crpc.rice.edu/newsArchive/nsl_11_16_97.html
Peek, L. (2010, August 25). Bilingual education: Toss it and teach kids English. Retrieved September 28, 2010, from The Fiscal Times: http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Issues/Budget-Impact/2010/08/25/Bilingual-Education-Does-Not-Work.aspx
Porter, R. P. (1998, May). The case against bilingual education. Retrieved September 28, 2010, from The Atlantic Online: http://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/98may/biling.htm
Rethinking Schools. (2010). Bilingual Education Resources. Retrieved September 28, 2010, from Rethinking Schools: http://www.rethinkingschools.org/special_reports/bilingual/resources.shtml
U.S. Census Bureau. (2009). State and County quick facts. Retrieved September 28, 2010, from U.S. Census: http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/00000.html