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Mid-western Educational Researcher






Midwestern perspectives on bilingual education: Changing demographics and educational challenges and opportunities [Special issue]

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In recent years, the benefits of bilingualism through dual language (DL) education models have been well documented. Despite evidence of bilinguals' heightened cognition and achievement, Midwestern English language learners (ELLs) are relegated to language programs that do nothing to enhance or maintain students' native language. This descriptive study employed a survey to collect data on existing DL programs across the state of Illinois (the largest population of ELLs in the Midwest), to better understand the challenges facing DL educators and administrators in the nation's middle. Data suggests the predominant obstacle encountered by school administrators is a lack of qualified DL educators, including an inadequate knowledge of dual language pedagogy and/or limited academic language biliteracy. Dual language program expansion across the Midwest can only continue if the teacher shortage and development needs are addressed. This study presents recommendations for DL teacher preparation and professional development.



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