Bilingual education eyed at conference Jan. 28-29

RIVERSIDE—Bilingual education in public schools will be the topic of a two-day conference Jan. 28 and 29 at the University of California, Riverside.

“Generations at Risk: The Realities and Debates of Bilingual Education” is focused toward policy makers, school board members and school district administrators, said Robert Nava, UCR director of governmental and community relations, and a conference organizer.

Educational theory about bilingual education and its effectiveness, the best ways to teach children English, and the latest research on bilingual education and how it is applied are topics of the conference, Nava said.

Bilingual education in California public classrooms has come under increasing attack. It is the target of a June ballot initiative that would require all children to be taught in English.

Among the panelists at the conference are Manuel Ramirez, University of Texas at Austin clinical psychology professor; Sal Villasenor, senior legislative advocate for the California School Board Association; Reynaldo Macias, director of the University of California’s Linguistic Minority Research Institute; the UC Berkeley dean of education, Eugene Garcia; and Terrance Wiley of the Center for Language Minority Education at California State University, Long Beach.

The first-day public policy conference session will be held in Room 1500 of UCR’s Humanities and Social Sciences Building.

Registration is $ 65 per person.

The second-day public program will be held in the Commons Cafeteria, and will include discussions of bilingual education’s history, theory, academic results and public debate. Registration for that session is $ 30 per person, or $ 120 for groups of five. For more information call (909) 787-2196.

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