June 15, 2013

Language Immersion Program Pushed for Vietnamese Youth in Orange County

From http://www.voiceofoc.org/oc_central/article_153bcd3c-cd21-11e2-8e02-001a4bcf887a.html

Language Immersion Program Pushed for Vietnamese Youth
By Thy Vo
June 4, 2013

While just a brief visit to Orange County's Little Saigon shows the deep connection the local Vietnamese community maintains with its homeland, there is growing concern that the community may be losing its most important cultural tie — its language.

“They don’t write well, they don’t read well and their pronunciation is Americanized. When they have children, many don’t know any Vietnamese,” said Vy Hoang, a high school math teacher and volunteer instructor at a Saturday Vietnamese school at St. Boniface Church in Anaheim. “We’re losing the language in one or two generations, and for me that’s a concern.”

With this reality as a backdrop, a group of Vietnamese parents and educators are asking the Garden Grove Unified School District to create the state’s first Vietnamese-English dual immersion program as soon as fall 2014.

There are more than 230 two-way immersion programs in California offered in languages such as Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean and German. So far, the only programs offered in Orange County are in Spanish and Mandarin, with a Korean charter school set to open in the fall.

While the proposal is still in the early stages, the district has so far agreed to hire a consultant to study the feasibility and cost of such a program.

Read the full article at http://www.voiceofoc.org/oc_central/article_153bcd3c-cd21-11e2-8e02-001a4bcf887a.html

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