Dual-language programs continue to grow in popularity throughout Bexar County as demand increases for curriculum that teaches multilingualism alongside standard subjects. At some schools, waiting lists contain hundreds of names.
There are many documented benefits to learning multiple languages early in life. Multiple area school districts have incorporated varying amounts of both Spanish and English into curriculum for years. A 2015 report cited San Antonio as a national model of success for bilingual education.
How do dual-language programs work, and why are they increasing in popularity? What is the level of local need for bilingual instruction, and how are schools evolving to meet that need?
What are the challenges and opportunities when it comes to the dual-language experience? Could dual-language learning help curb education inequality?
How can schools better prepare students for success in an increasingly diverse Texas?
- Alia Malik, education reporter for the San Antonio Express-News
- Claudia Treviño Garcia, assistant professor in practice in the College of Education and Human Development at the University of Texas at San Antonio, secretary of the San Antonio Area Association for Bilingual Education (SAABE) and former bilingual programs coordinator for East Central ISD
- Hugo Hernandez, president of the SAABE and treasurer for the Texas Association for Bilingual Education
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*This interview was recorded on Thursday, October 3.