ERIC Number: ED300542
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Jan
Literacy in a New Language.
BCEL Newsletter for the Business Community, v1 n10 p1,4-6 Jan 1987
Immigration and the role of English are issues very much on the minds of Americans. "English-only" laws in California and elsewhere have ironically not included provision for funding English-language instruction. Nationwide, the demand for classes far exceeds the supply. A survey shows that 37 percent of illiterate adults do not speak English at home and that up to 86 percent of non-English speakers who are illiterate in English are also illiterate in their native languages. Furthermore, the limited English speaking segment of the population is growing in size and in importance. Up to one-third of those added to the ranks of limited-English speakers every year are not new immigrants, but the products of U.S. schools. Usually, literacy is thought of as the reading and writing skills required by persons who already speak English, indeed, many English speakers use the spoken language alone to "get by". English as a Second Language (ESL) experts consider the development of listening and speaking skills a prerequisite for learning to read and write for limited English speakers who do not know how to listen to, comprehend, and utter the spoken language. Major funding and service paths include the Adult Basic Education Program, Refugee Assistance Agencies, the Department of State, vocational education programs, voluntary organizations and libraries, community-based organizations, migrant programs, and business and industry. Given the scale of the problem, the major funding responsibility must reside in the public sector. (YLB)
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - General
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Business Council for Effective Literacy, New York, NY.