Importance of Bilingual Education

Created by Megan Steinkruger

The Growing Numbers of English Language Learners

The number of ELL students is growing rapidly across the nation. ELL children account for nearly 10% of the total Pre-K through twelfth grade population. The ELL population is growing faster than the overall student population in the U.S.
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Percentage Change in Number of Pre-K to Fifth Grade ELL Students: 1990-2000

  • Colorado: 163%
  • Kansas: 87%
  • Missouri: 43%
  • Nebraska: 350%
  • North Dakota: 22%
  • South Dakota: 264%
  • Wyoming: 59%

  • · *Source: English Language Learners: A Growing Population, p. 2

Not providing bilingual education is unfair to ELL students.

In 1974 the case of Lau vs. Nichols came to the Supreme Court. The Court Ruled that schools are to take the necessary steps to overcome educational barriers for non-English speaking students.

"There is not equality of treatment merely by providing students with the same textbooks, facilities, teachers, and curriculum; for students who do not understand English are effectively foreclosed from any meaningful education."

Bilingual education for native english speakers

  • Because of the growing diversity of our nation bilingual education can better prepare our students for the real world.
  • Bilingual students are usually more successful academically.
  • It offers a wider choice of jobs and career fields.
  • Enriches cognitive development
  • Students have a wider understanding of the world and various cultures and customs.