In some New York City public schools, learning English doesn’t mean giving up your native tongue.
There are about 90 dual language schools in New York City that aim to make students proficient in two languages. Categorized as bilingual programs, these schools are intended to strengthen students’ native language development while simultaneously teaching them English.
91 percent of the students at P.S. 24 in Sunset Park, Brooklyn are Latino and almost half are designated 'English Language Learners.' The school has won the trust of immigrant families by immersing the students in both English and Spanish, but its D.O.E report card was mixed. While the school struggled to meet D.O.E. standardized test goals, it won accolades for its success in child development. Fi2W reporter Ramaa Reddy Raghavan investigated the school's dual language program and in this podcast episode, she speaks to Fi2W executive producer John Rudolph about the challenges facing the immigrant students and their teachers.