Bilingual higher education and successful academic results. However, bilingual

Bilingual Education in the United States is a topic that has been debated over for many years, years that even date back to the early 1900’s. The increase in immigrant and minority people in the United States has risen exponentially over the past 100 years, and because of this rise in population, there is still a question that remains to be concluded. That question being whether or not bilingual education should become a major factor in the education system as well as the community.          Having bilingual education in the U.S gives bilingual, non-bilingual, and minority students an enhanced probability of receiving a more developed education. The use of bilingual education in the primary education system helps minority students learn English to better harmonize with their education and achieve successful academic results. It also gives bilingual and non-bilingual students the opportunity to learn more about a different language. Students do not have to learn from bilingual courses in order to achieve a higher education and successful academic results. However, bilingual education gives language majority, bilingual, and non-bilingual students an opportunity to develop proficiency in another language. In fact “studies on the acquisition of a third language in a bilingual context have shown that literacy in two languages facilitates the acquisition of a third” (Hanz 24). When members of a majority group learn a second language in order to become bilingual, bilingualism tends to result in additive linguistic consequences. However, When members of minority language group’s learn a second language which might replace their native language, bilingualism results in subtractive linguistic consequences. “Thus, bilingualism has a positive outcome depending on the status of the languages involved” (Hanz 25). It is scientifically proven that students who are proficient in a second language have obtained higher levels of academic achievement and developed the acquisition of a third language.      In Texas a study was held that examined a variety of student outcomes in the area of linguistic and academic development that determined whether students enrolled in a two-way bilingual program for a minimum of three years are achieving academically. The participants of the study were native spanish-speaking and native english-speaking fifth grade students of Mexican origin. “The findings indicate that the majority of students who participated in the two-way bilingual program were performing at academic levels equal to or greater than their non-participant campus peers when tested on the Texas Assessment of Academic Skills (TAAS). In addition, participants were developing a high level of English literacy skills” (Alanis 2). Though bilingual education is able to show its success proficiency scientifically it also shows it through its history.         Bilingual Education has a long history within the United States and because of that it needs to be further developed and exemplified. The push for having bilingual education in the education system has been in progress for many years dating back to the early 1900’s and even further back to the beginning age of colonialism. The use of bilingual education has played a factor through different programs that give students a chance at high levels of proficiency in the first and second language as well as cross-cultural competence. Some would argue that the need for bilingual education is not as necessary since the United States has english as its prominent language in the education system and that adding more bilingual courses could cause students tension in their academics and social standards.       However, adding more bilingual courses in schools gives students the chance to further develop not just language skills but interactional skills as well. In present society, the use of these courses would be more successful since the arrival of immigrants as well as multilingual societies has increased over the years. Programs such as the Two-Way Immersion program are designed for this purpose. “TWI programs seek an environment that promotes positive attitudes toward both languages and cultures and supports the development of full bilingual proficiency for each group of students” (Christian 258).With such a large population of minority citizens in the U.S now, the need for further bilingual education is now essential.       Since the need for bilingual education has been proven to be essential, the step needed to help achieve that would be breaking the separation and isolation of bilingual education to expand as an intercultural practice in the education system. “Long before European colonizers arrived on the North American continent with their own languages, cultures, myths, and ideologies, the land was a cornucopia of indigenous languages and cultures” (Ovando 1). Cultural evolution is a natural human phenomenon, influenced by the effects of contact, conquest, disease, and technological advancements, which causes certain languages to either become extinct or prominent (Sanz 25). However, the push for bilingual education cannot be for it to become an isolated educational program. “We have to re-embed bilingual education in the larger frameworks of quality education and access for language-minority communities, promoting bilingualism for all (and foreign language policy), and ending the divisive tracking of children of different languages and skin colors and national backgrounds to different futures” (Ovando 17). Doing this will directly confront implicit ideological tension and accomplish the urgent goal of creating an intercultural education through bilingualism.         Though bilingual education is proven to have a large impact in the U.S, some would argue that the U.S doesn’t need bilingual education in present society and should focus instead on the expansion of english-only language policies throughout the U.S as well as the world. “Influences such as these are mainly a part of the English Only Movement which is a communicative phenomenon emerging from Whites’ perceptions of their own and minority groups’ language vitality, especially with regard to the rapidly growing Hispanic minority in the U.S” (Macedo 16). The expansion of english-only policies benefits the U.S internally since it’s the prominent foreign language, studies show that English-only initiatives have negative consequences for individuals with limited English proficiency.       However, the use for English only language policies in present society is no longer needed due to the large increase in minority students who require the use of bilingual courses. In a colonial context, bilingualism is necessary. It is a condition for all culture, all communication, and all progress. “The effectiveness of bilingual education results from the confusion between program evaluation research and basic research” (Ovando 15). By leaving our colonial choice unexamined, the choice to choose an effective methodology where students are denied the choice to study their language and culture is, for all practical choices, a unbeneficial choice.        Each main point offered information solidifying not only how important Bilingual education is in the education system but how it’s has influenced society for many years, changing it for the better. Hence the reason for arguing about why Bilingual Education in the United States should be a major factor in the education system since it gives bilingual, non-bilingual, and minority students a better chance to receive a higher education, It has a long history in the United States and needs to be further developed and expanded upon, and breaking the isolation and separation of bilingual education will expand it as an intercultural practice  in the U.S.

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