Sometime this month, a handful of parents from Illinois' Naperville School District 203 will discover that their children have secured a coveted spot in the district's pilot elementary foreign language classes. Demand has been so high that the district is using a lottery to determine who will participate in the rejuvenated elementary Spanish program this fall. It replaces the one the district abandoned in 2002 because of budget cuts. The schools join a growing number of suburban districts that are embracing a different approach to teaching foreign language to their youngest students.
Hispanic students at an Arkansas high school will again have the option to trade the traditional corsage and slow-dance prom for one with reggaeton beats and Spanish lyrics. Less than 1,000 students attended the school's prom last year as Hispanic students planned an alternative prom for the same day, without the school's sponsorship or help.
There is neither time nor a reason to slow down a plan to update the English language arts and reading curriculum for public schools, State Board of Education Chairman Don McLeroy said Wednesday after a Texas lawmaker pleaded for input from Hispanic experts since Hispanic children now make up a large plurality of the 4.7 million students attending Texas public schools.
What is the true cost of educating English-language learners? That's the ultimate question. It doesn't really matter that superintendents collectively say the true cost is $304 million and Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne says it's $40.6 million. The Legislature has to fund an immersion program for more than 130,000 students beginning next school year.
The word is out in north Minneapolis' Hmong community: the Hopkins School District is the place to go. Last fall, 39 Hmong students transferred to the district, making it the largest single migration of Hmong students under the state's Choice is Yours program, a voluntary desegregation program for Minneapolis students. This year, more than 40 students applied to join them. But Hopkins has admitted only 10 students so far. It's a change from last year, when almost every student who applied by the deadline was accepted, said Minneapolis neighborhood organizer Jay Clark.
Only about a third of Chicago Public School students with aspirations to attain four-year degrees enroll in colleges matching their qualifications, with 62 percent of students attending colleges with selectivity levels "below the kinds of colleges they would have most likely been accepted to, given their level of qualifications," according to a new study from the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago.
Vilma Serpas moved from El Salvador to Maryland four years ago and still is learning English. So last week when she stopped by her son's school, she immediately sought out the school's bilingual family liaison, Monica Lopez. Ms. Serpas is one of a growing number of Spanish-speaking parents whose children are enrolled in the public schools. They are parents who would be lost without help from liaisons like Ms. Lopez. Like the county's 11 other bilingual liaisons, Ms. Lopez is their link to the tools they need to build a life here and to help their children excel in school.
Florida is one of three Southern Regional Education Board states expected to see "explosive growth" of greater than 20 percent in the overall number of Hispanic high school graduates through 2022. According to a new report, a major increase in Hispanic students will significantly impact the SREB states as they work to raise high school and college graduation rates.
When Nelson Lopez applied to Virginia colleges this year, it never occurred to him that he might not be considered a state resident. After all, he has lived in the state since he was a baby, holds a voter registration card and will graduate this spring from an Alexandria high school. Then last month, he got an e-mail from the University of Virginia: If he wanted to be considered an in-state student, he had to prove that his parents are in this country legally. Lopez, 18, was born here — he's a U.S. citizen. But his parents are illegal immigrants. In the years since a huge wave of immigrants began pouring into the country, their U.S.-born children are graduating from high school and finding that citizenship may not be enough.
School officials in three Northern Virginia area school districts have noticed a decline in enrollment of English for Speakers of Other Languages students since the beginning of the school year. Officials in Prince William county said it's too soon to know for certain what is causing the decline. But officials in Manassas and Manassas Park said economic factors such as changes in the housing and job markets appear to be driving ESOL students, many of whom are Hispanic, out of the area. The anti-illegal immigration resolution passed in Prince William County also appears to be driving some Hispanic families away, Manassas Park officials said.