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Politics of ELL. By: Joe Lofstedt and Katie Tamola. Current Definition.

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politics of ell

Politics of ELL

By: Joe Lofstedt and Katie Tamola

current definition
Current Definition
  • ELL-The term English language learner (ELL), as used here, indicates a person who is in the process of acquiring English and has a first language other than English. Other terms commonly found in the literature include language minority students, limited English proficient (LEP), English as a second language (ESL), and culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD).
controversy bum bum bum
Controversy (BUM BUMBUM!)
  • English One language or the official language?
  • Proposition 63 (11/1986): California rules that English is their state’s official language!

-Initiative: “to insure that the role of English as the common language of the State of California preserved and enhanced.”

proposition 63 continued
Proposition 63 (Continued)
  • Bill Honig: “programs to teach non-English speakers” would be unaffected by P63
  • U.S. English: group that spent over $700,000 to get P63 passed)
  • U.S. English waited for the expiration of the CA’s bilingual education statue
  • The old statue had strict requirements in regards to establishing bilingual classrooms, how to evaluate LEP children, etc.
the shot heard around the usa
The Shot Heard Around the USA!
  • Many acts similar to P63 followed
  • Between 1987 and 1995, similar proposals were put forth
  • Eleven states passed these proposals
  • Bringing the total of “official-English” states to twenty.
but people want the bilingual ed law
But People Want the Bilingual Ed Law!
  • Fall 1986: “Virtually every school board and educators’ organization in California endorsed AB 2813”
  • AB 2813: A bill to extend the bilingual education law
  • 1987: The governor denies reauthorization on this bill
teresa p v berkeley
Teresa P. v. Berkeley
  • Berkeley Unified School District had a Language Remediation Program
    • Plaintiff claimed that BUSD did not design program effectively
    • Teachers were not qualified to teach the material
    • School needed to examine programs for LEP students: Castañeda vs. Pickard 1981
english plus alternative
‘English Plus’ Alternative
  • To counter the English Only movement
    • United Latin American Citizens and Spanish American League Against Discrimination
      • These two groups launched campaign
    • “We don’t want a monolingual society. This country was founded on a diversity of language and culture, and we want to preserve that diversity.”
english plus cont
‘English Plus” (cont)
  • This offered a positive alternative
  • English + other tongues
  • Passed in three states
    • New Mexico, Oregon and Washington
  • As well as in municipalities
    • Atlanta, Tucson, Cleveland and Washington D.C.
split into two groups
Split into two groups
  • Each group must draft an act for their state
  • One person needs to sponsor the piece of legislation
  • One person must be the Governor of the state
  • Group A
    • The demographics of your state by native language 20% Spanish, 15% Polish, 65% English
  • Group B
    • 5% Spanish 5% German and 90% English
reminders for groups
Reminders for groups
  • For the Governor and half of the congress it is an election year
    • You are all re-running and want to win
  • You have five minutes
  • Discuss
plot twist
Plot Twist
  • Your demographics have changed
  • Group A
    • The demographics of your state by native language 5% Spanish 5% German and 90% English
  • Group B
    • 20% Spanish, 15% Polish, 65% English
  • Are you going to change your Act? Why or why not?
slide13
EPIC
  • English Plus Information Clearinghouse
    • First national effort against English Only
    • One of the main objectives: fending off attacks on bilingual education
    • By 1988 this movement lost strength
      • “English minus”
the bennett years
The Bennett Years
  • 1985: US Secretary of Education William J. Bennett
    • We have “lost sight of the goal of [teaching] English” and instead adapted “ a way of enhancing students’ knowledge of their native language and culture”
    • He claimed bilingual education was “a failed path”
bennett cont
Bennett (cont)
  • Non-English speakers were not loyal Americans
  • Bilingual education muddies the water for English acquisition
  • War on all languages other than English
slide16

Break into 6 groups

  • Go to Wikipedia and search: Bilingual Education Act (reason for using Wikipedia accurate and easily searchable)
  • Group 1- 1968 Act, 2-1974, 3-1978, 4-1984, 5-1988 and 6-1994
slide17
NCLB
  • Renamed the English Language Acquisition, Language Enhancement, and Academic Achievement Act
  • Name change signifies a philosophical shift
  • Failure is determined by….tests
  • “The policy still remains highly debated at both the state and federal level.”
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