Latino Parents Decry Bilingual Programs

Ronald Kephart rkephart at
Tue Jul 20 13:18:58 UTC 2004

At 8:36 AM -0400 7/20/04, Harold F. Schiffman wrote:

>Children are famous for being able to detect microscopic differences
>in the size of two pieces of cake, so they are also quick to discern
>differences in the quality of materials...


My experience, lo these many years ago now, was somewhat different.
In the mid 1980s I produced some literacy materials for Creole
English on Carriacou, Grenada. As with you, this was before desktop
publishing and I had to type them on stencils and then run them off
on an old hand-cranked Gestetner copier. They were spectacularly
primitive-looking compared to some of the other books the kids had,
which of course were in English. Nevertheless, the kids seemed to
love these things, and even children I wasn't working with would come
up and ask for a copy. In some cases, these were the first things
they had ever taken home and read to their family. When I was back on
Carriacou last summer, I learned that some of them are *still*
floating around.

Anyway, in this case I think the kids really were hooked by the fact
that the books reflected the language they knew; and were willing to
overlook the non-glossy aspect of them.


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