At the age of nine I moved from Ethiopia to a completely new atmosphere known as the United States. Coming to a new country that you have never been to is one thing but not being able to speak the same language is a completely different story. So going to school in America was extremely hard mainly because I wasn’t able to understand my teachers or classmates. This made me feel afraid, not understood, and not accepted in a new world that spoke English. That is why I support Prop. 58.
Prop. 58 was recently passed on Nov. 8, repealing Prop. 227 which was passed in 1998. Prop. 58 allows schools have bilingual education programs so students can take classes that have teachers who can speak both English and the students’ native languages. These programs give students a better understanding and communication with their teachers. The new law also no longer requires students to get parental waivers to take these English Learner programs.
Prop. 58 does not require all schools to have these programs but parents and teachers can ask schools and districts to create them to further help educate their students.
These programs should be available to very school district because they help English learners be more developed and also it’s very helpful for these students to have teachers who can relate to their situation which makes the students at ease.
As a student who speaks English as a second language, I always wished that I had a teacher who taught in English and spoke my native language.
As a student I want to become proficient in English, but I also want to be given the opportunity to take other foreign languages with teachers who can speak my language and can work with me to better understand in a foreign language class.
It was biased of voters schools to restrict certain students from taking these programs as Prop. 227 required, when other countries have multiple languages available with teachers who can also speak English and teach these foreign languages.
“Everybody should speak more than one language. We need to build a broader community so if we only speak one language that means we can only connect to people that only speak our language. This is a world, it’s not a city, it’s not bubble, let’s burst it,” said health teacher Sue Anderson.
We need to be more open to new and innovative ideas and not restrict our students to stick with one or two languages that have teachers who can only speak one language and teach our students both English and students’ native languages. The bilingual education programs offer English learners to expand their knowledge of education while being able to work with teachers who know the students’ native languages.