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Legal and Ethical Issues Regarding Education of Ells

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Over the years several states have followed suit in abandoning educating bilingual

students, but many advocacy groups exist and are not allowing this to happen without a fight.

Many of these advocacy groups agree that something must be done in order to help ELLs master

necessary competencies in order to master the English language and succeed in furthering their

education in the United States if that is what they wish to do. In this essay two instances will be

discussed between the legal and ethical issues confronting the education of ELLs and how

schools meet the needs of ELLs without breaking their state laws.

Instance number one:

An article at the Houston Chronicle from Hearst Newspapers, reported by Christine

Rossell titled "It's Time to Replace Texas' Bilingual Education Policy" is packed full of reasons

why Texas should get rid of the programs to stop teaching bilingual students, but the most

important reason comes down to only one; funding. She states in her article, "Bilingual education

also costs more than alternative approaches such as English immersion. Texas schools with a

bilingual education program spend $402 more per student than schools without a bilingual

education program. Other studies find that bilingual education costs $200 to $700 more per pupil

than alternative approaches for English language learners."(Rossell, 2009) When reading the

article you have to admit Texans are proud to be Americans and she is no exception to the rule,

for she starts off her article in full American pride, no sarcasm intended of course. She claims

that English is the 'language of opportunity in the United States and Texas' and must be taught

in order to provide a secure future for all Texans and teaching English properly and as "quickly

as possible to those who do not speak it must be of paramount importance to all educators and

policymakers. "(Rossell, 2009) She continues in the article to point out that bilingual education

in Texas and other states is just not necessarily working and states statistically in 2008-09 Texas

had 448,917 students in bilingual education of which ninety-nine percent were Hispanic. Texas

demographer estimates by 2025 that number will double therefore; according to Rossell it is

imperative to have the most effective program in place to teach English to non-English speaking

students. She reports in Texas the program has a negative effect on English-language learner

achievement. She also reports in Texas students in bilingual education are not required to be

tested on the English TAKS for the first three years, starting in third grade. She reports that

programs that numerous studies have shown that sheltered English immersion programs seem to

be much more productive and have a much more positive effect on bilingual students and have

caused such states



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