Let me get this straight: To assist Hispanic students to master English, we’re going to teach them Spanish? No comprendo! I don’t get it!

I came to this country from Cuba at age 4 and was required to pursue my education entirely in English. As a result, today I speak both English and Spanish (my family spoke Spanish at home and continues to do so today). There is no guarantee that educating non-English speakers in their native language will provide the vocabulary or grammatical skills for success in English.

Look at the failure of bilingual education in California. Having matriculated in the California public school system, I am well acquainted with individuals who have recently graduated from those schools without basic English skills. Given that track record, does Durham Public Schools really believe that a $ 250,000 expenditure for teaching Spanish to Hispanic students is warranted?

I applaud the compassion of those who want to assist non-English speaking residents, but if the high school years are spent learning Spanish, were is the time (and money) to learn English?

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