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The Proposition 227

English for the Children Enforcement Project

Immigrant Student Test Scores Reveal Large Increase After First Year of Prop. 227 English Immersion Classes

(310) 737-1969

Thursday, July 22, 1999.

After repeated delays in release due to computer errors, California's standardized STAR test scores revealed a large increase in the academic performance of English learner students statewide just one year after Prop. 227 dismantled most bilingual education programs.

For the elementary grades 2-6 most affected by the changed curriculum, mean percentile scores of English learners rose 18% in reading, 21% in mathematics, 15% in language, 21% in spelling, and 19% overall. The percentage gains in mean percentile ranks for these students were more than double those for all California school children.

Oceanside U.S.D., which had most strictly followed the Prop. 227 framework, saw its English learner test scores rise 47% overall, while San Jose U.S.D., the only school district legally exempt from the provisions of Prop. 227, showed gains among the lowest in the state, rising, for example, just 4% in reading.

Prop. 227 author Ron Unz was generally pleased with the results. "Last year, when California voters were considering our measure, nearly the entire educational and political establishment predicted disaster and plummeting test scores if it passed. Now that statewide test scores for immigrant students in elementary grades have risen a remarkable 20% after just seven months of the new program, those same opponents are reduced to disputing Prop. 227's success instead of decrying its failure. And if more districts had followed Oceanside's strict adherence to the law, the gains would probably have been greater still."

As a benchmark for comparison, a major recent study concluded that California's massive three-year, $4 billion class-size reduction reform had raised percentile test scores by approximately 2-3% per year.

STAR Test scores and percentage increases for Selected Districts

English for the Children–Proposition 227

3415 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Suite #370, Los Angeles, CA 90034 Tel: 310-737-1949 Fax: 310-737-1959

Web: www.YesOn227.org E-Mail: [email protected]