Structuring Success for Emergent Bilinguals in American Secondary Schools

the U. S. A., ID LLCE2016-245;     For decades, the model of instructing Emergent Bilinguals in American middle and high schools has been focused on segregating these students in English as a Second Language (ESL) tracks for language and content learning. This is not surprising as American secondary schools are largely run using efficiency models that group students in similar language proficiency courses.  Despite data showing that Emergent Bilinguals are the demographic group least likely to obtain a high school diploma, this model persists. This model perpetuates a lack of school success and integration with the broader school culture. At the Global Learning Charter School in New Bedford, Massachusetts, a different structure is employed. Focusing on individual student needs rather than a model of efficiency, the school fully integrates these students with native English speakers for more than 85% of their day. This presentation will focus on how schools can create a diverse environment where the linguistic, content, and social-emotional needs are met.

Key words: Emergent Bilinguals, mainstreaming, ESL