The news from an all too happy AP reporter about America`s continuing loss of a common language came today. Georgia`s first bilingual government school - Unidos Dual Language Charter School - is now conducting classes in two languages. One more than the other. Students at Unidos get about 70 percent of their reading, writing, social sciences and math in Spanish, and 30 percent in English, said school founder Dell Perry:”it’s [Spanish] sort of where things are going,” Perry said.
By GIOVANNA DELL’ORTO
the increasing desire to preserve the immigrants’ heritage and the economic recognition that being bilingual is a plus on a resume is leading to a growing number of dual language schools like Unidos. There are more than 300 such programs in the U.S., the first of which opened in 1962 in Florida, and most teach Spanish and English, according to the Center for Applied Linguistics
“I hope people start looking at a diversity of languages as a must, and stop looking at America as a one-language country,” said Pedro Ruiz, president of the Washington-based National Association for Bilingual Education.
And so it goes.
The AP report closes with this:
Yolanda Hood enrolled her 5-year-old son, Thaddeus, in Unidos with the hope he’s young enough to learn Spanish effortlessly. She said that will help him thrive in a country that’s increasingly diverse.
“We’d be really arrogant to expect everybody to speak English,” she said.
Here in Georgia the news in last week`s DHS report that, as a state we suffer the fastest growing population of illegal aliens in the nation didn`t come as a surprise to most people here.
The fact that we have a rate of growth of illegal immigration - 114% that is more than twice that of the next state, Arizona (45%) turned a few heads, mine included.
Proof that Georgia has become a border state is not hard to find. The flag of Mexico is everywhere here and when I call my bank, the cable TV company, my health care provider, and a list of businesses too long to list, English is an optional language on the telephone.
This information contained in the federal report was a surprise to me however:
Indo-Asian News Service
Washington, August 19, 2006
Most illegal immigrants to the United States come from Mexico but the greatest percentage increase in their ranks during 2000-2005 was from India, according to official estimates.