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Bilingual Students

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 11, 1996
Douglas Lasken (letter, Dec. 6) wrote that students who are "redesignated" have "finally earned the right to study English for the first time." This is totally incorrect. Students who enter a bilingual program begin studying English from day one, while receiving instruction in academic subjects in the language they know best. The amount of English instruction they receive increases gradually as their mastery of English improves. At some point, they receive nearly all of their academic instruction in English, taught in a technique called "sheltered English," which makes the material more comprehensible to the students.
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OPINION
August 2, 2003
Re "College Board Scores With Critics of SAT Analogies," July 27: While I agree that the verbal section of the SAT is culturally biased, I disagree that replacing the analogy section with a writing section is fair. As an immigrant who was educated in a Detroit public school, I would agree with Robert Schaeffer of the National Center for Fair & Open Testing that I would not have known what a regatta was when I was in high school. However, all the other words in the sample question should be known by anyone who is planning on attending college and, therefore, the right answer can be derived by the process of elimination and some analytical thinking.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 6, 1996
Re "L.A. Schools Shift 26,000 Out of Bilingual Classes," Dec. 3: The Los Angeles Unified School District is very proud of a slight increase in the rate of redesignation of bilingual students into English. The public, however, does not really understand what "redesignation" means. It does not mean that the student has learned any English. It means that the student, after years of effort in the native language, has finally earned the right to study English for the first time. The district's new standards call for redesignation within five years, which means that a 5-year-old who speaks no English may not study English until he or she is 10. At that point, redesignated students routinely score poorly on English language tests and face years of difficulty catching up. DOUGLAS LASKEN Woodland Hills I am a teacher in a multilingual school (Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Spanish)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 1, 2001
Re "Look Beyond Learning English," Voices, Feb. 24: I teach freshman composition at a local college, and I applaud the ability of my bilingual students to effectively process information that is given to them in English. My American students, many of whom have only a nodding acquaintance with a foreign language, are the ones who have difficulty with processing information, following instructions and writing essays that are appropriate to the topic. Further, my American students often display an alarming attitude of entitlement--a trait that my bilingual students, for the most part, lack.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 17, 1996
A new analysis of a study of the Los Angeles Unified School District's LEARN reform program indicates that fourth-graders who recently transferred out of bilingual education classes fared the worst among Latino students. The evaluation of the standardized test data is to be presented to the Los Angeles Board of Education on Monday by outside consultants.
NEWS
April 27, 1989
The Board of Education tonight will consider creating an assessment center to centralize testing of bilingual students. "We're just trying to be more efficient, more effective," said Deputy Supt. Marcia McVey. Thirty-seven languages are represented among more than 800 students whose first language is not English or who speak another language at home. Each of the district's eight schools has been conducting placement evaluations on their campuses. But the increased numbers of bilingual students enrolling is putting a strain on individual schools, McVey said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 1, 2001
Re "Look Beyond Learning English," Voices, Feb. 24: I teach freshman composition at a local college, and I applaud the ability of my bilingual students to effectively process information that is given to them in English. My American students, many of whom have only a nodding acquaintance with a foreign language, are the ones who have difficulty with processing information, following instructions and writing essays that are appropriate to the topic. Further, my American students often display an alarming attitude of entitlement--a trait that my bilingual students, for the most part, lack.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 21, 1997
"Bilingual Education Gets Little Support" (Oct. 15) neglected to point out that the results of The Times Poll showing support for all-English instruction for limited English proficient children are inconsistent with the results of all other polls on this topic. Previous polls have shown that the public supports the idea of using the students' native language for some of the school day to help them learn subject matter and develop literacy while they acquire English, as does published research.
OPINION
August 2, 2003
Re "College Board Scores With Critics of SAT Analogies," July 27: While I agree that the verbal section of the SAT is culturally biased, I disagree that replacing the analogy section with a writing section is fair. As an immigrant who was educated in a Detroit public school, I would agree with Robert Schaeffer of the National Center for Fair & Open Testing that I would not have known what a regatta was when I was in high school. However, all the other words in the sample question should be known by anyone who is planning on attending college and, therefore, the right answer can be derived by the process of elimination and some analytical thinking.
NEWS
March 25, 1987 | LEO C. WOLINSKY and ELAINE WOO, Times Staff Writers
Assembly Speaker Willie Brown all but conceded Tuesday that bilingual education programs required of school districts statewide will expire June 30 because of Assembly Republicans' continued opposition to legislation that would keep the programs alive.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 12, 1999 | DIANE WEDNER, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Top bilingual students from Chatsworth, Van Nuys, Canoga Park and San Fernando high schools racked up impressive wins in the semifinal round of the Desafio Academico, the Los Angeles Unified School District's academic competition for students proficient in English and Spanish. The English-as-a-second-language contestants, many of them honors students from 16 area high schools, competed in the quiz-show-style competition developed last year by school board member Jeff Horton.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 22, 1998 | NICK ANDERSON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
In many public schools in Los Angeles County and other urban areas of California, select groups of bilingual students outscored their "English only" peers on this year's state tests of reading and math.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 4, 1998 | FRED ALVAREZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Despite landslide passage of an initiative aimed at dismantling bilingual education, El Rio elementary schoolteacher Kathy Szlykowicz is planning to use whatever means necessary to help students who speak little or no English. And Nancy Carroll, superintendent of the Ocean View School District south of Oxnard, said she worries about trying to translate the vague language of the initiative into the practical reality of the classroom.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 23, 1997 | JEFF KASS
About 500 supporters gathered Wednesday to dedicate an unusual elementary school that seeks to produce students literate in English and Spanish. Wallace R. Davis Elementary School, which has served 780 students since July, is named for the local attorney who successfully sued the Santa Ana Unified School district in 1968 because a disproportionate number of Spanish-speaking students were moved into classes for the mentally handicapped.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 21, 1997
"Bilingual Education Gets Little Support" (Oct. 15) neglected to point out that the results of The Times Poll showing support for all-English instruction for limited English proficient children are inconsistent with the results of all other polls on this topic. Previous polls have shown that the public supports the idea of using the students' native language for some of the school day to help them learn subject matter and develop literacy while they acquire English, as does published research.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 6, 1996
Re "L.A. Schools Shift 26,000 Out of Bilingual Classes," Dec. 3: The Los Angeles Unified School District is very proud of a slight increase in the rate of redesignation of bilingual students into English. The public, however, does not really understand what "redesignation" means. It does not mean that the student has learned any English. It means that the student, after years of effort in the native language, has finally earned the right to study English for the first time. The district's new standards call for redesignation within five years, which means that a 5-year-old who speaks no English may not study English until he or she is 10. At that point, redesignated students routinely score poorly on English language tests and face years of difficulty catching up. DOUGLAS LASKEN Woodland Hills I am a teacher in a multilingual school (Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Spanish)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 14, 1992 | SCOTT GRAVES
About 50 bilingual students attended a training seminar Thursday as part of the Oxnard Union High School District's effort to "grow our own" teachers. Spurred by a shortage of bilingual educators, the district recruited high school seniors who speak Spanish and English to form the Migrant Teacher Corps, said Ray Tejada, migrant instructional support teacher.
NEWS
November 21, 1996 | AMY PYLE, TIMES EDUCATION WRITER
The plight of immigrant students dominated discussion over proposed statewide high school graduation standards Wednesday at the first of two Southern California hearings on those standards--with the state's two largest advocacy groups for bilingual students taking dramatically different stands.
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