Sunday, September 4, 2016

What the research really says about bilingual education

Sent to the Press-Enterprise, Sept 4

Former Oceanside superintendent Ken Noonan claims that dismantling bilingual education worked because after it past,  "English learners’ reading scores soared on state tests." (“Bilingual education could return to state’s schools,” Sept. 3) It is true that English learners' Stanford 9 test scores went up after Proposition 227 passed, but so did scores of all students in California. A new version of the test was introduced the year before the English-only law was passed. Scores increased each year as students and teachers became more familiar with the test, a well-documented pattern when new standardized tests are introduced.

Careful scientific studies have shown no obvious improvement in English language development resulting from the passage of Prop. 227. Also, controlled studies have consistently shown that students in bilingual programs outperform comparison students in all-English programs on tests of English reading.

Stephen Krashen
Professor Emeritus
University of Southern California

Original article:
http://www.pe.com/articles/english-812411-prop-school.html?page=1


Sources:
Careful scientific studies:: Jepsen, C. and de Alth, S. 2005. English learners in California schools. San Francisco: Public Policy Institute of California; Parrish, T. 2006. Effects of the Implementation of Proposition 227 on the Education of English Learners, K–12: Year 5 Report. American Institutes for Research and WestEd.

Controlled studies: McField, G. and McField, D. 2014.  "The consistent outcome of bilingual education programs: A meta-analysis of meta-analyses." In Grace McField (Ed.) The Miseducation of English Learners. Charlotte: Information Age Publishing. pp. 267-299.

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