Across the country, more and more schools are implementing dual-language programs, in which students attend an equal number of classes in English and in another language, such as Spanish, Portuguese or Mandarin. Half of the school districts in Utah -- by far the most progressive state when it comes to bilingual education -- offer dual-language immersion, to great success. This school year, New York City is expanding its own language-immersion programs to 40 additional schools, which means the Big Apple now has about 150 bilingual public schools.
"There's a huge interest," says Emmanuel Saint Martin, a French native and founder of the Bilingual Fair in New York City. "Sometimes it comes from parents wanting their children to connect with their heritage, but there are also many American families who want to get their kids ready for a globalized world."
"It's a big contrast to 50 years ago, when the first thing an immigrant family wanted to do was to forget their language," he adds. "People still want to be assimilated, still want to speak English, but now they want their kids to keep their heritage, too. It's seen as an advantage."
We talked with Saint Martin about the benefits of going to a dual-language school.
Read more at Metro.us.