I am curious why the author stated that we are often unprepared to serve these
students. The article then goes on to describe the amazing, outstanding, varied
and numerous programs that are available to serve these students in our public
schools, in special schools, after they leave high school (community ed
programs, community colleges, etc.), and even in the colleges and universities.
Also enumerated are many people committed to helping these immigrant students
achieve whatever is possible for them. I would not characterize this as a
system "unprepared" to serve them.The expectations for
graduation are the problem, and need to be addressed in "the system".
The principal quoted was wise and professional in his estimation that a great
goal for some immigrant students who come late to our system is to learn as much
as they can and have a good experience in school. Putting pressure on our high
schools to "graduate" immigrants who come late to our system is unwise
and will drive our high school graduation expectations downward, and dilute the
value of our diplomas.There should be no pressure on schools for
high graduation rates.
Great article. There is a correction - Valerie Gates has been the ESL
coordinator for the school for the past 2 years.
An interesting new book/ebook by ex-Salt Laker Lance Johnson that helps those
coming to the US is "What Foreigners Need To Know About America From A To Z:
How to understand crazy American culture, people, government, business, language
and more.” It has a chapter that explains how to be accepted to an
American university and cope with a new culture, including friendship and
classroom differences. Endorsed worldwide by ambassadors, educators, and
editors, it has chapters on English grammar and speech. Half of our foreign
students stay here after graduation. It has four chapters that explain how US
businesses operate, a must for those who will work for an American firm. Most
struggle in their efforts and need guidance from concerned Americans and books
like this to extend a cultural helping hand so we all have a win-win situation.