Yuma project answers chicken-or-egg question of learning English

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Mon May 26 13:38:05 UTC 2008

 Forwarded From: edling at lists.sis.utsa.edu

The Arizona Republic

Yuma project answers chicken-or-egg question of learning English

Students whose first language is not English usually lag behind their
classmates in achievement even though they have the same potential.
Improving English-language skills for students who are not native
speakers continues to be one of the top challenges in Arizona's
educational system. But the age-old debate remains: do we teach
students in their first language where they can stay on level in
course content, or do we concentrate on teaching them the language
first, knowing that they will fall behind in content? Yuma Elementary
School District's ELL Academy is a unique solution to this challenge
using potentially underutilized summer time. More than 500 students
have been selected to participate this summer in the third year of the
academy. "Last year, two-thirds of the 203 students who finished the
program showed measurable growth after six weeks of intense curriculum
instruction," said Tom Hurt, associate superintendent of school

Full story:



 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone: (215) 898-7475
Fax: (215) 573-2138

Email: haroldfs at gmail.com


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