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Lack of teachers a rate-limiting factor for immersion programs

December 7, 2016

City’s Dual Language Programs Struggle to Find Teachers, Experts Say

By Amy Zimmer | February 23, 2016 9:54am

 Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina (left), Principal Victoria Hunt (center) and Queen Letizia (right) observe a kindergarten art class at the Dos Puentes Dual Language School, a dual language program in Upper Manhattan.

Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina (left), Principal Victoria Hunt (center) and Queen Letizia (right) observe a kindergarten art class at the Dos Puentes Dual Language School, a dual language program in Upper Manhattan. View Full Caption

Newsday

MANHATTAN — The Department of Education has celebrated its expansion of dual languageprograms — recently awarding $10,000 to more than a dozen schools for multilingual instructional materials and ongoing professional development.

But at many of the approximately 160 remaining dual language programs around the city, principals are struggling to fill the teaching spots amid a dearth of certified foreign language teachers, parents and experts said.

In the Lower East Side’s P.S. 20, which includes a Mandarin dual-language program, it’s been so hard to find qualified teachers that its fifth-grade Mandarin teacher and fourth-grade English teacher had to flip flop between classrooms from one day to the next for months, parents said.

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