ERIC Number: ED242192
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: 0
Legal and Ethical Implications for Teaching the Student Speaking Multiple Dialects.
Byrd, Marquita L.
Until the 1880s, the language of instruction and that spoken by students was dictated by the culture of the community. Although public officials advised immigrants to use American English rather than their mother tongues, no legislation was enacted mandating English as the official language of education. However, with sizeable groups of immigrants arriving in the late 1800s, political issues and xenophobia brought about federal legislation and legislation in 32 states mandating English as the only language of instruction. By 1920 and until the 1960s, testing in English was used for screening people for employment and voting. Based on public laws of the last 20 years and results of court litigation, it appears educators must be careful to avoid systematic exclusion of culturally and/or linguistically different students from the learning experience due to either their inability to understand the language of instruction or the teacher's inability to appreciate their speech community. Although no student has a constitutional right to a specific educational experience, each is protected from denial of access to education because of language barriers. However, the tendency to Anglify students and eradicate language differences remains, preventing many students' full participation in the educational process. (MSE)
Descriptors: Access to Education, Acculturation, Bidialectalism, Black Dialects, Constitutional Law, Court Litigation, Cultural Differences, Dialects, Elementary Secondary Education, Ethics, Language of Instruction, Language Variation, Legal Problems, Legislation, North American English, Public Schools, Second Language Instruction, Social Dialects
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the Speech Communication Association (Washington, DC, November 1983).