Saturday, October 8, 2016

Prop 58 will improve English proficiency

Published in the Mercury News, October 12, 2016
Re: Bilingual rules rewrite deserves no vote (Oct 7)

The Mercury News recommends voting against Prop. 58 because "English proficiency has to be paramount for success in this country," noting that after Proposition 227 passed, English proficiency tripled ("Bilingual rules rewrite deserves no vote, “ Oct 7)
English learners' Stanford 9 test scores did in fact increase after 227 passed, but so did scores for all students in California. A new version of the test was introduced the year before 227 was passed. Scores increased each year as students and teachers became more familiar with the test, a well-documented pattern when new standardized tests are introduced.  227 does not deserve the credit for this increase.
Careful scientific studies have shown no obvious improvement in English language development resulting from the passage of Prop. 227. Also, controlled studies have consistently shown that students in bilingual programs outperform comparison students in all-English programs on tests of English reading.
English proficiency is paramount for success. For this reason, we should support Proposition 58.

Stephen Krashen

Original article:

No obvious improvement: Jepsen, C. and de Alth, S. 2005. English learners in California schools. San Francisco: Public Policy Institute of California; Parrish, T. 2006. Effects of the Implementation of Proposition 227 on the Education of English Learners, K–12: Year 5 Report. American Institutes for Research and WestEd.

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

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