Magazine April 3, 2017, Issue

California’s Bilingual-Ed Mistake

(Roman Genn)
Voters replaced a program that was working with one that didn’t

Kenneth Noonan speaks with the zeal of a convert. “I’m convinced,” he says, “that there’s a best way to teach English to kids who don’t know it: all day, every day, from their first day in school.”

The founder of the California Association for Bilingual Education (CABE) isn’t supposed to talk like this — and back when he still served as a public-school superintendent, he didn’t: “We believed that students needed to become fluent in their native language before they could learn English.”

Then Noonan changed his mind. Now he wishes that California voters hadn’t changed theirs.

Last November, they approved Proposition 58,

To Read the Full Story
John J. Miller, the national correspondent for National Review and host of its Great Books podcast, is the director of the Dow Journalism Program at Hillsdale College. He is the author of A Gift of Freedom: How the John M. Olin Foundation Changed America.

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