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The Language Of Education! Essay

978 words - 4 pages

The language of education has always been of a supreme importance. This problem becomes even more important nowadays since the migration processes in the contemporary world is very active and the national and consequently linguistic situation is permanently changing. The US is characterized by high levels of migration and the growth of population is partially provided with new immigrants who arrive in this country often without proper education and knowledge of the local language.Naturally in such circumstances the state has to cope with the problem of linguistic diversity and focus on the bilingual education as a possible way out from the difficulties that are created for national minorities because of language.However, the problem, or to put it more precisely the necessity to introduce bilingual education, is not new for the US and within the 20th century, especially in its second half, the state attempts to solve this problem on both levels, federal and state. As a result, different programs and legislative acts were implemented in order to provide all nations and national minorities with the possibility to receive education in their own language along with the official language of the whole country.Such programs and laws have been started not just because of a political will of some politicians, but the moving force of the introduction of bilingual education were juridical precedents which were the results of quite numerous court cases. These court cases aimed at the solution of the problem of a traditional education based in English only and providing national minorities with equal rights to receive the education as any other citizen of the United States.One of the first, and yet most famous and significant court cases concerning in a way the problem of bilingual education was the Brown v. Board of education (of Topeka) case, which was probably the first step on the way to the introduction of bilingual education. As a result of this case in 1954, the United States Supreme Court ruled unanimously that “racial segregation in public schools violated the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which states “that no state may deny equal protection of the laws to any person within its jurisdiction” (Lambert & Tucker 1972:241). In fact this means that the Supreme Court officially recognized the equal opportunities of representatives of different races and nations to receive education and in such a context national minorities, which were not provided with the education in their native language, were obviously deprived.Another significant breakthrough in the introduction of bilingual education occurred during the presidency of John F. Kennedy, who declared the War on Poverty, which besides implied the promotion of educational opportunities of the most deprived shares of American society, and particularly immigrants who just arrived in the country. The problem was that in the situation of difficult economic situation and...

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