While the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors, or "DREAM," Act has been introduced numerous times and then stalled in Congress, students who would benefit from the measure have been organizing, using social-networking tools to do so. The proposed act was last introduced March 26 in the Senate Judiciary Committee. It would provide a path to legalization for undocumented students who graduate from U.S. high schools and attend college or serve in the military for two years. Education Week Assistant Director of Photography Christopher Powers and I reported for edweek.org on how several hundred immigrant youths, many ...


In two years, Arizona has more than doubled the rate of English-language learners that it reclassifies as fluent in the language, according to an article published today in the Arizona Republic. Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne put out a press release this week saying the jump in the reclassification rate is a result of the state's new program for ELLs. In the new program, English-language learners receive four hours of English skills a day. The press release said Arizona reclassified 28.6 percent* of the state's 143,225 ELLs as fluent in English this school year, up from 12 ...


For the first time in three years, the graduation rate for English-language learners in New York state has not declined over the previous year. Graduation rates for the state released today show that 35.7 percent of ELLs who started school in New York state in 9th grade graduated after four years, up from 27.3 percent the previous year. (Hat tip to GothamSchools.) That contrasts with a graduation rate of 70.9 percent for all students. The data is for students in the class of 2008. The average graduation rate for all students in the class of 2006 in ...


In Houston, we have YES Prep charter schools serving a predominantly Hispanic group of students. In the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, we have IDEA charter schools. In Chicago, we may soon associate charter schools with UNO, which stands for United Neighborhood Organization, Chicago's largest Latino community organization. UNO just received a $98 million grant from the state of Illinois to run charter schools, according to an article published today in the Chicago Tribune. The organization already runs eight charter schools and plans to use the funds to double that number to 16. UNO's eight charter schools serve 3,450 ...


The Choosing America Project is seeking anecdotes from immigrants that it can possibly turn into short films for public screening. The project, which calls itself a "creative initiative" without an affiliation with any organization, doesn't have a deadline for submissions. A public relations person told me that the project organizers are hoping to get "many stories as soon as possible." The project doesn't want to receive life stories or accounts of the immigration process. Rather it seeks stories of 1,500-4,000 words about a "decisive moment that determined the course of your life in America." The description of the ...


"The Today Show" broadcasts an interview with Ron Unz, who financed the effort to curtail bilingual education in California back in 1998, for a segment that attempts to answer the question, "Should education in the U.S. be bilingual?" The show stresses how the Hispanic student population has grown dramatically in this country in places that didn't traditionally receive a lot of immigrants, such as North Carolina. Visit msnbc.com for Breaking News, World News, and News about the Economy As usual, Unz contends that English-language learners have fared better in California since voters approved a ballot initiative to reduce ...


A Stanford University research explores how language shapes how people think.


New York City must do more to support large high schools, where many students with poor academic performance or special needs ended up, after some large high schools were replaced by small ones, according to a new report (via a post at GothamSchools). The report notes that many new immigrant students were diverted to the remaining large high schools. See coverage of the report in the New York Times as well. The report by the New School's Center for New York Affairs was released the day after a report by Advocates for Children of New York and the Asian American ...


Theresa Zhen, a native of New York City's Chinatown, paints a picture of Chinatowns being communities in which residents are generally isolated from the resources they need to succeed. In an op-ed piece in Asians in America Magazine, Zhen makes a distinction between acculturated Chinese and Chinese who are newcomers and may be very isolated because of their poverty and lack of English skills. She notes that in San Francisco's Chinatown, the median household income is $17,886, compared with San Francisco's median household income of $55,221. She says schools are overcrowded in that city's Chinatown. Acculturated Chinese students ...


The What Works Clearinghouse finds that eight studies of the Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol, or SIOP, a framework for teaching ELLs content and English at the same time, don't meet the "evidence standards" criteria of the clearinghouse.


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