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South Carolina Mandarin immersion charter going strong

June 19, 2022

Fox Carolina By Brookley Cromer

Published: Mar. 22, 2022 at 4:25 PM PDT

GREENVILLE, S.C. (FOX Carolina) – Is your child interested in learning a second language? A Greenville charter school is offering something that’s rare in South Carolina and enrollment is open for next year.

Speaking a second language is second nature for students at East Link Academy, a Chinese-immersion public charter school for elementary and middle school students.

“I feel like if my son learns a language like Mandarin, which is really hard and difficult to learn, he can learn any language after that,” parent Jeanne Boughner said.

Students in K-4 through 8th grade learn Mandarin through body language, visuals, and facial expressions.

Please read more here.

A call for more Asian language immersion teachers to be trained

June 10, 2022

LAist, by Josie Huang, June 6, 2022

Chinese and Vietnamese are, after Spanish, the most commonly spoken non-English languages in California, but they’re rarely taught in public schools because there’s not enough teachers to do the job.

The state issued nearly 1,200 bilingual accreditations in the 2020-2021 school year, but only 63 were for Mandarin Chinese and two for Vietnamese, according to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing.

The total number of K-12 teachers accredited in Asian languages added up to 93.

Civil rights leaders on Monday joined with state legislators in calling for a one-time, $5 million state allocation to invest in a teacher training consortium for Asian languages, in hopes of moving some of the credentialing costs off the shoulders of teachers.

Please read more here.

Delaware’s language immersion at the ten year mark: An overview of how it’s going

May 31, 2022

Some highlights:

  • Delaware now offers Chinese immersion in 13 schools to 1,300 students.
  • In the Mandarin program, students take the AP exam in 9th grade and then can take college-level Chinese classes in high school, allowing them to graduate one course short of a Chinese minor.
  • Of the 100 students who began in the first Kindergarten Mandarin program, 47 continued on to high school.
  • However, two school district are phasing out their Mandarin immersion programs because attrition and COVID brought the number of students too low to be sustainable.

Delaware Public Media, May 27, 2022

Assessing language immersion after a decade in Delaware schools

With nearly 10,000 students currently enrolled and new grades still being added, Dual Language Immersion (DLI) programs are solidifying their position in Delaware’s public-school landscape.

Announced in 2011 by former Gov. Jack Markell and launched as a pilot program in three schools the following year, DLI programs offering either Spanish or Chinese are now operating in 12 of the 15 school districts that serve the elementary grades (all but Lake Forest, Laurel and Woodbridge). Two charter schools, Las Americas Aspira and Academia Antonia Alonso, offer Spanish immersion, and Odyssey Charter has the state’s only Greek immersion program.

Growth has been steady – from the original three schools to 29 in 2017 to 57 this year. Spanish is offered in 46 schools to about 8,500 students, Chinese in 13 to about 1,300. (Three schools offer immersion in both languages.)

Some of the first students to enter a Chinese immersion program – in the Caesar Rodney School District – are finishing their first year of high school by taking the Chinese Advanced Placement exam. They will have the opportunity to take three more years of Chinese classes in high school – and earning college credit for them – or learning a third language, making them trilingual before they earn their diplomas.

Please read more here.

And here’s info about the state-wide program overall.

San Diego’s Mandarin immersion school to get a “whole site” modernization

May 23, 2022

A Whole Site Modernization project is underway for Barnard Mandarin Magnet Elementary School at 2445 Fogg St. The school offers a Mandarin Chinese immersion program giving students from K-5 instruction in core academics in both English and Mandarin Chinese. The cost of Whole Site Modernization is projected to exceed $15 million with an anticipated construction start in the summer of 2023.

Please read more here.

Influential political site The Hill encourages parents to consider immersion programs

May 16, 2022

Remaining monolingual is a surefire way for America to fall behind


05/15/22 8:30

In a multilingual world, the United States remains a mostly monolingual country. Even though roughly 70 million Americans speak a language other than English at home, almost 80 percent speak English only. In Europe, almost two-thirds of working age adults report knowing at least one foreign language. While over 300 million Chinese students are studying English, only 200,000 or so American students are studying Chinese.

Americans’ foreign language complacency may stem from the knowledge that English remains the language of international business and diplomacy and is by far the most commonly studied second language around the world. But others’ knowledge of English is no substitute for Americans’ knowledge of foreign languages.

The war in Ukraine serves as a wake-up call to Americans to make competence in foreign languages an urgent economic, national security, and educational priority.

Please read more here.

Los Angeles-area Catholic school thriving after Mandarin immersion added

May 7, 2022

The article below says All Souls is the only Catholic elementary school in the country offering a dual-language immersion program featuring Spanish and Mandarin. That’s indeed true. There are however two other Mandarin immersion Catholic schools, St. Michael’s Catholic Acadamy in Flushing, New York and Maryknoll School in Honolulu.

Dual language immersion program brings beloved Alhambra Catholic school back to life

ALHAMBRA, Calif. (KABC) – An Alhambra elementary school that was closed for two years for a lack of students has come roaring back to life by offering a unique way of teaching.

All Souls World Language Catholic School is the only Catholic elementary school in the country to offer a dual-language immersion program featuring Spanish and Mandarin Chinese for all of its students.

Now, 12 years after the Archdiocese of Los Angeles shut the school down – and 10 years after it reopened as a language immersion experiment with just 20 students, All Souls has a waiting list and draws TK through 8th grade students from 65 different zip codes.

Please read more here.

Virginia now has its first Mandarin immersion program – meaning 68% of states are now home to at least one program

May 3, 2022

O.B. Gates Elementary School in Chesterfield County, Virginia, launched its Mandarin immersion program in the fall of last year, making it the first program in the state.

That brings us up to 68% of states having at least one Mandarin immersion program. These are the 16 states that still don’t have one:

New Mexico
North Dakota
South Dakota
West Virginia

O.B. Gates Elementary is also a pathbreaker in terms of the other language immersion program in the school.

In the 2019-2020 it launched the nation’s first dual language immersion program in American Sign Language. The school has 37 students in the Mandarin immersion strand and 63 in the ASL immersion strand. Of those, two are deaf or hard of hearing, according to the article below.

ASL is such a cool language.

Please read more about the school here.