Legal Memo on Bilingual Education
RE: Bilingual education should be maintainedIntroduction
Bilingual education is a form of education in which academic information is presented to the students in two or more languages. In this manner, an education system that uses more than one language is bilingual. Research on bilingual education emphasizes contemporary educational problems. Administrative, institutional, fiscal, and political issues have shown significant attempts of producing research accounts detailing the history of bilingual education in the United States (Slavin, 2011). However, it is still difficult to elaborate and accurate and global account of the legal struggles that enabled bilingual education to continue in education systems despite decades of intolerance, obstacles, and success. Making an objective assessment on the legal status of bilingual education within legal and educational boundaries requires the utilization of recollected information on the legal process across USA dealing with bilingual educational issues. This memo tries to establish these legal issues surrounding bilingual education in the United States as it relates to the Asian Pacific community.
According to Baker (2011), between 40 and 53 percent of the Asian Pacific community is linguistically isolated. This presents a significant problem when it comes to providing education to members from the community. For this and other reasons, this memorandum sources legal information to present an argument that bilingual education should be maintained. Most of the bilingual education programs are dual language programs where schools enroll students who are both second learners of English and those whose families are English speaking for the purpose of becoming bilingual and bicultural. From the diversity of the cultures and the languages spoken, the students can learn new languages and cultures (Slavin, 2011).
Students who are second language learners and first language speakers of both languages are mixed in courses and classes throughout the school day. However, teachers may decide to use either the target second language or the home language exclusively for some period of instruction or subject- area instruction (Feng, 2007).
Summary of the facts surrounding bilingual education
The 1959 revolution in Cuba is greatly attributed to bringing back the issue of bilingual education in the United States. When Fidel Castro overthrew the Cuban dictatorship and formed a Communist government, many upper and middle- class Cubans fled to the United States (MacSwan, 2005). Most of these refugees from Cuba found settlements in Florida. Despite being well- educated, they had little in terms of resources, and were generously assisted by the federal and state governments. However, their pursuit of education in the United States was hampered by the fact that most of them were not proficient in English. To facilitate a fair access to educations for all people living in the United States, the government made efforts to implement bilingual education in the education systems. Over the years, bilingual education has received support and opposition in equal magnitude. This section summarizes the facts surrounding this form of education:It is better …