November 14, 1985 |
Strait-laced Aunt Margaret, visiting from London, exclaimed, "You wouldn't believe the price of a nice joint these days!" If native English speakers do a double take at her provincial reference to a Sunday roast beef, imagine the challenge English presents to non-native speakers. Chocolate moose? Drives me up a wall? Steal a base? In ESL (English as a second language) classes from Oceanside to San Diego, teachers help students decode the English language.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 16, 1985 |
In a display of political ignorance that would be laughable were it not so mean-spirited, the Ventura County farming town of Fillmore decided recently that English is its official language. The city council so declared in a one-sentence resolution that will have no effect other than to insult the half of Fillmore's 10,000 residents who are Latino.
February 27, 1986 |
Conceding that an "English-also" sign ordinance passed last summer is too weak, the Monterey Park City Council has introduced an ordinance that would require every store and manufacturing plant to have at least one sign describing the business in English. It is aimed primarily at businesses that post signs exclusively in Chinese. Henry Terashita, community development director, said a recent survey shows that only 14 of Monterey Park's 3,215 businesses avoid English entirely in signs.
June 11, 1986 |
Latinos and other supporters of bilingual education are launching an offensive against the growing move to establish an English-only policy nationwide, which they call an example of increasing hostility against Latinos. Pressing their case for more support for those hampered by their inability to speak and read English, several groups and members of Congress plan a news conference today to announce details of a federal education bill to be introduced this week. The legislation, drafted by Rep.
August 17, 1990 |
Education Secretary Lauro F. Cavazos told educators from this Texas-Mexico border area today that students who do not speak English are not ready to learn, and drew swift criticism. Cavazos, speaking to about 1,500 Laredo principals and teachers, urged them to get parents more involved in education and to make sure students have a command of English. "Parental involvement and language competency are basic," Cavazos said.
September 9, 1995 |
A judge who told a Mexican native she was dooming her daughter to life as a housemaid by speaking only Spanish to her apologized Friday to Latinos for making an insensitive choice of words. But State District Judge Samuel Kiser refused to apologize for ordering the woman to speak English as well as Spanish to the kindergartner--an order criticized by Latino leaders across the nation.
January 13, 1987 |
Wendy Motoike was teaching her fourth- and fifth-graders about owls. The ideas were sophisticated but her words and phrases were as simple as a parent's to a toddler. As the teacher enunciated the words, she sometimes moved her body in pantomime. "The owl eats the mouse whole," she said. She held up a picture of an owl gobbling a mouse. To show digestion, she made a churning gesture on her stomach. "Twelve hours later the owl coughs up one of these," Motoike said.
February 13, 1989 |
For the Spanish-speaking, Los Angeles is hardly a foreign city. Not only do the street names reflect the city's Mexican heritage and mother tongue, but blaring billboards in Spanish hawk everything from beer to panty hose, from cigarettes to Spanish-language telephone service. Turn on the radio and you can take your pick of Ranchera music standards, the latest salsa tunes and easy-listening Spanish-language rock.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 5, 2011 |
From the outside, Plummer Elementary doesn't look much like a showcase school. The 60-year-old campus has drab green bungalows, a patchy lawn and graffiti scrawled on the "Please, No Honking" sign. The California Distinguished School logo above the front gate, out of reach of taggers, is about the only indication that something special is happening inside. The San Fernando Valley campus, in a working-class pocket of North Hills, was singled out by Los Angeles Unified Supt. John Deasy in a conversation we had last month about whether low-income, Latino students in this district are doomed to mediocrity.
July 23, 2010 |
I became an English tutor by accident. A few months out of college and feeling lonely and bored in a new town 3,000 miles from my family and friends, I volunteered to teach illiterate adults to read. It was something to do, somewhere to go other than my moldy attic apartment after work in a windowless office in Aberdeen, Wash., a foggy mill town of 16,000 people best known as the hometown Kurt Cobain slammed in his songs. To my dismay, the volunteer coordinator at Grays Harbor Community College declined my offer.