Monday, April 7, 2014

What scientific research says about bilingual education

Published in the Boston Globe, April 10, 2014 as "MCAS scores are no way to as­sess lan­guage pro­gram"

Not mentioned in the discussion of dual language schools in Dever ("Teachers, parents protest end of bilingual program," April 7) is the overwhelming evidence that bilingual education works.

MCAS scores are unscientific. They are influenced by many factors that have nothing to do with the the efficacy of bilingual education, eg. students changing schools, changes in the test,  changing levels of poverty, changing definitions of English proficiency, and teaching factors.  Scientific studies are set up to probe the effect of bilingual education, all other factors held constant.

Scientific studies consistently show that language minority students in bilingual programs outperform similar students enrolled in English-only programs on tests of English reading. 

Stephen Krashen

Source: McField, G. and McField, D. 2014. "The consistent outcome of bilingual education programs: A meta-analysis of meta-analyses." In Grace McField (Ed.) 2014. The Miseducation of English Learners. Charlotte: Information Age Publishing. pp. 267-299.

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