#1 Spanish Speakers Offered AP Spanish.02-25-2009, 12:21 PMCalifornia School Spends $10G a Year to Teach AP Spanish to Kids Who Speak Spanish
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
By Nora Zimmett
A middle school in Southern California is spending $10,000 a year to teach Advanced Placement Spanish to 35 of its 650 students -- and all but one of them are already fluent in Spanish.
Thirty-four of the kids in the AP class are from Mexico or are the children of Mexican immigrants. They all grew up speaking Spanish at home.
The program -- the only one of its kind in California -- has outraged some critics who say they are concerned that the AP course wastes public resources – including taxpayer dollars – to teach native Spanish speakers how to speak their native language in an American public school.
“In public schools, Spanish speakers should put their focus on making sure that they are fluent in English and equipped to speak the kind of English that will open the doors of opportunity to them in this country,” says K.C. McAlpin, executive director of Pro English, a non-profit organization promoting English as the official language of the United States.
“I think this school is kind of playing games with educational resources, that you know, I think any taxpayers, especially local taxpayers, would object to,” McAlpin told FOXnews.com.
But administrators at Lemon Grove Middle School, located eight miles outside San Diego, are enthusiastic about the program, which they say will help prepare the 6th- through 8th-graders for college.
“Our goal is basically to provide kids with an opportunity to excel and to feel really satisfied about doing the higher level work,” Lemon Grove School District Superintendent Ernie Anastos told FOXNews.com.
He said the AP course goes well beyond the students’ everyday conversational skills. “This is not ordering-at-a-restaurant language. This is taking a graduate course language.”
But McAlpin is not convinced. “This whole thing about building their self confidence is a bunch of hooey," he said.
"Students are not fooled by this. If anything they’re going to – they’ll be inclined to become cynical about the system. And how it can be sort of rigged in their favor.”
02-25-2009, 12:26 PM
I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.C. S. Lewis
02-25-2009, 12:37 PM
- Join Date
- Aug 2005
My addopted daughter is a Spanish speaking nativeborn who is obviously conversant in her native tongue and tutors kids in her required Spanish classes at school .She also is an flawless English speaker that she learned from friends while attending school in America ! Learning a new Language has it's utilitarian virtues only if it is applied to some useful task ,It smacks of "Carrying coals to Newcastle ",otherwise .
02-25-2009, 03:34 PM
A child I work with attends one of the three good high schools in Detroit (magnet schools for advanced students). She grew up speaking spanish and english, so they won't let her take spanish as a class. She was bumming, because she was looking for the easy A.
02-25-2009, 03:51 PM
BUT I think that the point here is they get more money for better grades and for getting students to pass AP exams.Stand up for what is right, even if you have to stand alone.
02-25-2009, 04:57 PM
- Join Date
- May 2008
Meh, they probably also spend money to send English-speaking kids to AP English classes.
No college worth its salt would give AP credit to kids who can already speak Spanish fluently.
02-25-2009, 05:54 PM
and how many of those are left?Stand up for what is right, even if you have to stand alone.
- Join Date
- May 2008
02-26-2009, 09:40 AM
What makes me laugh is that they are offering it in Middle school. One of my friends in high school was a native Spanish speaker, but she also spoke perfect English (she actually ended up with the 2nd or 3rd highest GPA in the school) and she took independent study Spanish in High School, where she wrote serious Spanish essays and read real Spanish literature. If they want native Spanish speakers to take Spanish in school, then it should not be the same Spanish everyone else takes, it should be more like an English class, where it will really challenge them.
However, considering the state of California's schools, I don't think that is an essential area to be focusing on at the moment
02-26-2009, 11:02 PM
Nothing surprises me in this state.
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