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OPINION
October 23, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
Segregating young children for whom English is a new language according to their fluency levels produces the best academic results, according to most research. So the Los Angeles Unified School District has little choice in the matter. As a result of a settlement with the U.S. Department of Education, which had accused the district of doing poorly by its English learners, the district was required to submit an evidence-based plan for improvement, and that plan calls for sorting the students by English skills.
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OPINION
October 23, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
Segregating young children for whom English is a new language according to their fluency levels produces the best academic results, according to most research. So the Los Angeles Unified School District has little choice in the matter. As a result of a settlement with the U.S. Department of Education, which had accused the district of doing poorly by its English learners, the district was required to submit an evidence-based plan for improvement, and that plan calls for sorting the students by English skills.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 24, 2013 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
The state Education Department has ignored its obligation to make sure that thousands of students learning English receive adequate and legally required assistance, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court. State officials said they had not studied the lawsuit, but insisted they are meeting their legal obligations. The suit, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and others, focuses on an estimated 20,000 students who are receiving no help or inadequate services as they work to learn English and keep up academically at the same time.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 19, 2013 | By Teresa Watanabe
Luis Gaytan, the 5-year-old son of Mexican immigrants who speak Spanish at home, was so terrified by kindergarten that he would barely talk - prompting classmates to tease that he didn't have a tongue. In the last two months, at Granada Elementary Community Charter, Luis has gained a growing command of the language in a class of students with a mixed range of English ability. His father, Jorge, is convinced that his son is learning English more quickly because he hears it every day from more-advanced classmates.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 31, 2012 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
State officials are neglecting their legal obligation to ensure that students who are learning English are receiving an adequate and equal education, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday by the ACLU of Southern California and other advocates. The focus of the litigation is a small school system near Fresno, but the legal implications are broader: The suit accuses the state of poor oversight and says it must, by law, act to make sure these students are keeping pace academically with their peers across California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 28, 2010 | By Teresa Watanabe, Los Angeles Times
Nearly 60% of English-language learners in California's high schools have failed to become proficient in English despite more than six years of a U.S. education, according to a study released Thursday. In a survey of 40 school districts, the study found that the majority of long-term English-language learners are U.S. natives who prefer English and are orally bilingual. But they develop major deficits in reading and writing, fail to achieve the academic English needed for educational success and disproportionately drop out of high school, according to the study by Californians Together, a coalition of 22 parent, professional and civil rights organizations.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 11, 2011 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Unified School District has agreed to sweeping revisions in the way it teaches students learning English, as well as black youngsters, settling a federal civil rights investigation that examined whether the district was denying the students a quality education. The settlement closes what was the Obama administration's first civil rights investigation launched by the Department of Education, and officials said Tuesday that it would serve as a model for other school districts around the country.
OPINION
March 21, 2006 | Kelly Torrance, KELLY TORRANCE is an adjunct scholar at the Lexington Institute in Arlington, Va.
THE LATEST TEST scores of California's English learners show that immigrant children are continuing to do well under English immersion, defying the doomsday predictions by opponents of 1998's Proposition 227. The mandate that schools teach children "overwhelmingly" in English, rather than in their native languages, has resulted in a large, demonstrable improvement in English proficiency. Last year, more than 1.3 million English learners took the California English Language Development Test.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 1, 2006 | Carla Rivera, Times Staff Writer
Glendale teacher Rebecca Quintero spent a recent morning encouraging her fourth-graders to write about the joys of summer for an English assignment. But some of her Spanish, Armenian, Korean and Tagalog speakers were confused at how to begin and their textbook offered limited guidance. What Quintero needed, she said, was a fourth-grade book that would support students with varying degrees of English proficiency.
OPINION
July 11, 2010 | By Alice Callaghan
The continued segregation of impoverished English learners in failing inner-city schools harms students as well as the abiding interest of society to have educated citizens capable of participating in all social and economic opportunities. Low economic status and low educational achievement go hand in hand. Proposition 227 ended the 25-year failed program of transitional bilingual education, in which students were taught all or mostly in their native language during their first years in school.
OPINION
May 2, 2013
Re "Gov. Brown as Robin Hood," Column, April 29 In his column casting doubt on Gov. Jerry Brown's demand that money be shifted from better-off school districts to ones that have a higher share of disadvantaged students and English learners, George Skelton's poison pen writes - with no attribution other than "some" in Sacramento - that Brown was "cranky" after returning from his trip to China because of jet lag. Skelton notes speculation that...
OPINION
April 30, 2013
Re "Lawsuit: State fails some English learners," April 25 The article does not mention two approaches to help those acquiring English, both with substantial research support. One is bilingual education, dismantled by Proposition 227 more than a decade ago. Research has shown that students in bilingual programs outperform students in all-English programs on tests of English reading. Also, studies show that Proposition 227 did not result in improved English proficiency. Second, there is strong evidence that those who do more pleasure reading in English do better on English-language tests, and case histories reveal that those who succeeded in acquiring the English needed for school were dedicated readers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 24, 2013 | By Howard Blume
The state education department has ignored its obligation to make sure that thousands of students learning English receive adequate and legally required assistance, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court. State officials said they had not studied the lawsuit, but insisted they are meeting their legal obligations. The suit, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and others, focuses on an estimated 20,000 students who are receiving no help or inadequate services as they work to learn English and keep up academically at the same time.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 24, 2013 | By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times
The state Education Department has ignored its obligation to make sure that thousands of students learning English receive adequate and legally required assistance, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court. State officials said they had not studied the lawsuit, but insisted they are meeting their legal obligations. The suit, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and others, focuses on an estimated 20,000 students who are receiving no help or inadequate services as they work to learn English and keep up academically at the same time.
OPINION
March 10, 2013
Re "New rules for interns in schools," March 8 The problem with putting teaching interns from programs like Teach for America into classrooms with English-language learners isn't the interns' lack of competence teaching such students; it's their lack of competence period. The young intern profiled in your article, Stephanie Silva, has a degree in political science but is teaching chemistry to special-education students in high school. Credentialed teachers are required to either pass a test in their subject or to have a college degree in that subject.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 8, 2013 | By Teresa Watanabe, Los Angeles Times
Stephanie Silva is just five years older than the Manual Arts High School students she teaches, but she is passionate about making a difference in their lives. The Cal State Northridge political science graduate joined Teach for America last year, underwent five weeks of training and attends night school for her full credential while teaching science to students who are struggling with English and learning disabilities. But interns like Silva will be allowed to teach students struggling with English only under stricter state controls over their training and supervision, the state Commission on Teacher Credentialing unanimously decided Thursday.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 17, 2001 | JENIFER RAGLAND, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Elementary school students in Ventura County who speak little or no English continued to perform better on the Stanford 9 exam this year, and have nearly doubled their scores since testing began in 1998. But those at the middle- and high-school levels have failed to improve at all during the same four years. That is especially evident in reading, where fewer than 5% of ninth-, 10th- and 11th-graders scored above the national average in 2001, according to state testing data released this week.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 2, 2001 | JESSICA GARRISON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Newport Beach and Costa Mesa schools have agreed to revamp the way they teach students who are not fluent in English after a federal civil rights investigation found that a middle school was providing an inadequate education for those children. Under the Oct. 24 agreement, the Newport-Mesa Unified School District promises to make major fixes by next summer or risk losing federal funding.
OPINION
March 7, 2013
In California, teachers whose students include English learners are required by state law to have special certification. That's sensible, given the special challenges that come with running a classroom in which not all children are equally proficient in the language being spoken. There are two ways to secure that certification: by graduating from a college or university that grants such a certificate, or by attending a program that educates would-be teachers in that specialty. The teachers certified by the latter route receive what is called an "intern credential.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 26, 2013 | By Teresa Watanabe, Los Angeles Times
More than 20,000 California students struggling with English are not receiving any legally required services to help them, setting them up for academic failure, according to a recent report by two civil rights organizations. The study compiled 2010-2011 state data showing that students of all ages in 261 state school districts were receiving no specialized support to help them acquire English, as required under both state and federal law. The districts with the largest number of students receiving no aid included Los Angeles Unified with 4,150, Compton Unified with 1,697 and Salinas Union High with 1,618, according to the report by the American Civil Liberties Union of California and the Asian Pacific American Legal Center.
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