In the next 30 years, minorities will become the new majority in the U.S. The folks at the U.S. Census Bureau predict that by 2044, we’ll be a majority-minority nation. That shift will appear in our youth much sooner – as early as 2020.
With no official language on the books in the U.S. (individual states can set a standard or follow the federal policy of non-adoption), making English standard is an increasingly hot topic in this country. We’ll let politicians deal with contentious issues; we’re focused on exploring the best methods to develop a new generation of effective and capable bilingual communicators in our school systems.
Today, we classify anyone learning to communicate in English as well as their native language as an English Language Learner (ELL). Nearly one in every 10 public school students in the U.S. are classified as ELLs. In Colorado, that number is higher – more than 14 percent of students were classified as ELLs during the 2012-2013 school year. And they spoke more than 160 different languages.
There are several methods to educate ELLs, but differing opinions on which approach is the most effective. Some favor English-only classrooms, other prefer bilingual or dual-language settings. Regardless of the teaching method, working with ELL students requires more than a basic understanding of multiple languages or cultures. Bilingual learners have unique needs. An important part of your role is serving their needs while helping them master communication and academic skills.
It’s why Regis University places an emphasis on helping you understand the latest teaching strategies and methodologies for educating culturally and linguistically diverse students via our Master of Arts in Education: Teaching the Linguistically Diverse program. At Regis, you’ll focus on collaboration, instruction and ways to assess your students’ progress. Just as importantly, you’ll be prepared to take on an in-demand leadership role in public and private schools. So if you’re ready to take your career further, apply to our program today.