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'Bilingual Showcase'

May 25, 1988

I can't believe the Los Angeles Unified School Board has fooled you into supporting the expanded bilingual program for city schools ("Bilingual Showcase," editorial, May 13).

The plan is supposed to teach the students basic skills in Spanish while learning English on the side.

School Board Member Leticia Quezada tells of her frustration when she was thrown into all-English classes after immigrating from Mexico at age 13. I agree we need bilingual education for older immigrant students.

But the crime of the plan is when it takes 5-year-old students, who are at a ripe age to learn English easily, and instead pushes them into Spanish classes until 3rd grade or more, leaving them only two or three years of English reading before moving to junior high. I'd like school board members to explain how they expect students to master English and develop a strong vocabulary in that short of time.

DAVE DE HERAS

Long Beach

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