ERIC Number: ED356115
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Apr-3
Bilingual Education: A New Beginning.
Pacheco, Manuel T.
This paper discusses the education of Mexican-American students along the Mexico-United States border. A brief review of historical and cultural perspectives suggests that the Mexican population in the border area continues to increase because the area is culturally and linguistically accomodating. Schools that teach the dominant Anglo culture fail in providing equal educational opportunities to students whose cultural and linguistic backgrounds are different. Mexican-American students along the border score lower on achievement tests when compared to their ethnic counterparts away from the border and when compared to Anglo students. The assignment of Mexican-American students to special education classes in border schools is disproportionately high. Mexican-American students along the border have successfully resisted acculturation. Limited English proficiency, however, is a major obstacle to the students' educational achievement. The goals of bilingual education programs are to build on the cultural strengths that the child brings to the classroom, to reinforce native language, to capitalize on the biculture elements in constructing a curriculum, and to retain teachers who are trained and identified with both traditions. Although in Texas all elementary schools are required to have bilingual education programs, it is questionable how effective these programs are in meeting the needs of Mexican-American students and in encouraging cultural and linguistic diversity. (LP)
Descriptors: Biculturalism, Bilingual Education, Bilingual Education Programs, Educational Opportunities, Elementary Secondary Education, English (Second Language), Equal Education, Limited English Speaking, Mexican American Education, Mexican Americans, Multicultural Education
Chicano Studies Program, University of Texas at El Paso, Graham Hall, 1st Floor, El Paso, TX 79968-0563 ($5; 10 or more copies, $4 each).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Texas Univ., El Paso. Chicano Studies Program.