This petition has been drafted by a group of parents with children in the Nyack Elementary School District (Upper Nyack, Liberty, and Valley Cottage) that wish to have their children schooled in a language immersion program. Ideally, we are trying to get at least 300 people from the community (at least 100 with children in the district) to sign this petition in order to establish a district-wide program.
A couple of quotes from the experts:
For ESL students, acculturation is different than assimilation. Assimilation presents problems in socialization in higher grades.
"Taking" a language is not enough. "Exposure" to a language is not enough.
Language immersion programs have been shown to be cost-effective and highly-beneficial to the community. Please lend your support by adding your signature to this petition and adding any comments you may have!
I am requesting that Nyack Elementary School District offer a two-way language immersion program. Ideally, such a program would consist of a student population with about half native-English speakers and the other half natively-speaks the target language (e.g., Spanish). Class time would be split in half and taught in English and half in the target language. This way students encourage and teach each other, and eventually all become bilingual.
Proven benefits of these programs include:
- Improves linguistic and meta linguistic abilities
- Increases cognitive abilities such as divergent thinking, concept formation, verbal abilities, listening skills, and general reasoning
- ESL Students (those with a native language other than English) will gain literacy in their native language; otherwise, their literacy will plataue around the third grade
- Opens the door to other cultures and helps a child understand and appreciate people from other countries
- Increases job opportunities in many careers where knowing another language is a real asset
- Superior SAT scores and standardized testing
- Enhances Memory
Nyack and Valley Cottage are multi-cultural communities with 25% of their population having a native language other than English. Offering a two-way language immersion program would greatly help educate our children and improve their understanding of other cultures. This program would offer many benefits to our children and to our community as a whole.