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Adult immigrant language education in California: policy, politics & the role of practitioner research, a case in point Anne Whiteside City College of.

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Presentation on theme: "Adult immigrant language education in California: policy, politics & the role of practitioner research, a case in point Anne Whiteside City College of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Adult immigrant language education in California: policy, politics & the role of practitioner research, a case in point Anne Whiteside City College of San Francisco (San Francisco State University) Kings College November 2, 2011

2 Grassroots language planning Language Planning from the Bottom up Nancy Hornberger (1996)Indigenous Literacies in the Americas:Language Planning from the Bottom up Contributions to the Sociology of Language, 75. Mouton de Gruyter Educating policymakers: representing practice issues at the policy level, advocacy Educating/empowering practitioners

3 Outline 1.General US context for immigration Socio-economic changes & globalization 2. California: the Sociolinguistic context Immigration to California: some demographics Reception of immigrants at 3 levels: policy, politics, communities 3. Practitioner Research: the CCSF ESL Study Study rationale, design, data collection findings What we learned in the process Future directions 4. General discussion: advocacy/pragmatic issues

4 Part 1. US context Socio-economic change and globalization Post-industrial economy: loss of manufacturing jobs Growth of professional, business sector/ low skilled labor/service sector Increased income disparity

5 Foreign-born in US at historic high 40,000,000 FB 12.9% of US population Growth in immigration: = % = +28.4% Highest growth states: S. Carolina (88.4%) Tennessee (81.8%) Arkansas (78.7%) Kentucky (75.1%) Source: 2010 American Community Survey (ACS)

6 Globalization & the informal economy: To stay competitive internationally cheap labor reliance on undocumented immigrants

7 Undocumented/unauthorized immigrant pop. Pew Hispanic Center estimates US: (in millions) 2000: : : 11.1 (28% of foreign born)

8 US: major events & immigration policy NAFTA 1993 – Increased regional interdependence btw Mexico, US, Canada, – flow of Information/human & economic capital Sept. 11, 2001 – Emphasis on security and control INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service) becomes ICE (Immigration Control Enforcement) Under the Department of Homeland Security

9 Whole US: National origins of immigrants 2009

10 Part 2. California National origins of immigrants in California: 2009

11 Immigration to CA Increase despite tighter controls Source: MPI fact sheet Year# of Foreign born% of population 19906,458, % 20008,864, % ,150, %

12 California: Foreign-born & legal status btw million undocumented 9.3% of labor force 2007 to 2009: declined by 8%

13 Foreign-born in California & schooling 2008 Immigrants accounted for: 30.1 % of college-educated workers age % of civilian employed workers with no high school degree Source MPI fact sheet

14 California is multilingual! California Foreign-born & language: Source MPI American Community Survey 2009, 1990,2000 census Foreign born Speak only English Speak L Speak English VW Speak Eng. >VW

15 Linguistic assimilation: Alba 2005 Bilingualism more common than in the past most children of immigrants speak L1 at home, particularly children of Latin American immigrants (L1 Spanish)

16 How immigrants are received/perceived? Concepts from Alejandro Portes (1995) assimilation/acculturation vs modes of incorporation= processes that structure integration 3 levels of incorporation: – Policy – Mainstream society (political discourse) – Local community economic embeddedness, nested economies

17 Federal level: immigration policy Homeland Security & ICE: control, increase in deportation, particularly criminals Federal comprehensive reform continues to fail – Republicans divided: business vs nativists – Democrats divided: labor vs rights

18 Federal level: Language policy no explicit, formalized language policy at the federal level attempts to pass English-only federal laws have failed default policy: linguistic status quo – English as a symbolic imagined community – Monolingualism the norm – American =Monolingual speaker of English

19 Federal funding for ESOL 1998: Federal Adult Education & Family Literacy Act, Title II Workforce Investment Act (WIA) WIA funds Adult Basic Education (ABE) English as a Second Language (ESL) Adult Secondary Education (ASE) Goal to enable adults to become more employable, productive, and responsible citizens through literacy

20 Language of WIA increase the basic reading, writing, speaking, and math skills necessary for adults to obtain employment and self-sufficiency and to successfully advance in the workforce assist immigrants who are not proficient in English in improving their reading, writing, speaking, and math skills and acquiring an understanding of the American free enterprise system, individual freedom, and the responsibilities of citizenship.

21 Mainstream society: Political frames Liberal: equity level playing field rights & responsibilities Conservative: freedom (from government interference) accountability security

22 Attitudes related to economic changes economic boom low-wage immigrant workers, in particular Mexican/Central American, contribute to construction and service sectors immigrants=good bust high unemployment rates immigrant competition immigrants=bad

23 Mainstream discourses of immigration:Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free Worthy: hardworking up by your own bootstraps American Dream Unworthy: illegal aliens dont pay taxes freeloaders

24 Education policy Bush-era legacies No Child Left Behind (NCLB) 2001 Title III Goal= equity Funds limited-English proficient (LEP) Student Program ensure that all …attain English proficiency, develop high levels of academic attainment in English, and meet the same challenging state academic standards as all other students Title III =accountability Move through the sequence one year per level. General Emphasis on empirical research to justify spending – Science-based, evidence-based i.e. quantitative

25 U.S. Department of Education Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) Accountability: National Reporting System Definition of success Outcome measures Gain/Enter /Retain Employment Obtain a Secondary Credential or GED Enter Postsecondary Education

26 Stae level: California language policy: 1986Constitutional amendment: English the Official language of the government Ballot initiatives: 1994 Proposition 187 SOS prohibits undocumented immigrants from using health, education and other social services won but found unconstitutional in federal court 1998 Proposition 227 English for the Children requires all public schools to conduct instruction in English, that ELLs be taught overwhelmingly in English

27 California Dream Act (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Passed Oct California students who are undocumented immigrants will qualify for state-funded financial aid for college equity

28 California: Funding for Adult education Adult ed (Title 5) based on average daily attendance (a.d.a.) ESOL State formula driven by # of LEP adults with less than HS education 47% of LEP adults had HS or more Underweighted for those who need basic skills

29 California initiatives: Career & Technical education (CTE) Liberal agenda: the EDGE campaign Californias Future WorkforceWho Will Staff Our Economy Increasingly global markets and international competition, rapid technological advancement and an aging workforce confront this state with a critical challenge. If we do not meet it…theconsequences will be borne by all of the states residents CTE including a focus on adults is a critical part of the response to globalization

30 Local level: ethnic enclave communities spaces where immigrants may have little economic capital but lots of social capital Embeddedness Social capital: – Networks provide jobs, housing, protection – layered, embedded identities – co-ethnic ties between immigrants (Smith 2006) Symbolic capital: L1 – ethnic businesses

31 Data from my dissertation: Whiteside (2006) We are the Explorers: Yucatec Maya-speaking transnational migrants negotiating multilingual California

32 Increase in workplace/community multilingualism: Site A: Mongolian, Czech, Chinese, Tagalog, Spanish, Maya Site B: Greek, British English, Spanish, Site C: Chinese, Malay, Singlish (Singaporean English) Spanish Maya Site D: Italian, Arabic, Spanish, Maya Site E: Wolof, French, Spanish, Maya use of lingua franca English linguistic crossing: Don Francisco & the Vietnamese merchant

33 Translocal speech communities phone cards, skype, extended Maya-Spanish daily communication with home, participation at parties watch home videos, apartments with 18 people read Diario de Yucatan online to find out about Yucatecans in North Bay Area

34 Time-scales & immigrant jobs JS: changed restaurant jobs 6 times in 2 years

35 In practice… Normalized: hiring domestic, day labor, agricultural, janitorial, construction, and contractors Two-tiered civil rights: Documented vs undocumented immigrants Right to own, but not drive cars Right to protection of police, tenant/labor laws, but afraid to report abuse Right to assemble, but worry about arrest and deportation

36 Linguistic effects of embeddedness value of L1 linguistic and cultural crossing, genres, styles competence in lingua franca varieties truncated repertoires, checkered competencies (Blommaert 2010) Where does Standard English fit in this picture?

37 Modes of incorporation: Summary Policy themes: punitive/control & equity English only as a security, policing linguistic boundaries equity ignores the starting point accountability but measures based on what? Macro, mainstream social themes: ambivalent changes with economic outlook benefits of cheap labor/threat of competition Local themes: security/ social obligations tied to L1 nested economic ties value of L1 and Culture1 nested affiliations/ crossings

38 Part 3. Practitioner research the California Community College context 110 Colleges 2.9 million Ss – providing workforce training, basic skills education and preparing students for transfer to 4-year institutions Incoming Ss and basic skills – 75% unprepared for college English – 90% unprepared for college math Source: CDE ESL Basic Skills report 2010

39 Practitioner research the 2010 CCSF ESL Study Context: City College of San Francisco – 110,000 Ss ESL department – 23,000 Ss credit division: tuition – 3,000 Ss non-credit division: open enrollment, free levels literacy, 1-9 – 20,000 Ss

40 Political context for ESL study Issue: equity Ss taking too long to get through basic skills classes, low completion rates CCSF Board member Pressure to get more ESL Ss into CTE CBOs document needs of ESL Ss >Funding from CCSF Chancellors Office for ESL study

41 Context for CCSF ESL Study The problem : Accountability 1. ARC = Accountability Reporting for the California Community Colleges AB 1417 Focus on Results Career Development and College Preparation (CDCP) Progress and Achievement rate= # of CDPC Ss who – transitioned to credit – transferred to a 4-year institution – received a noncredit certificate of completion or competency. CDCP rate CCSF 6.3% of the cohort 7.1% in

42 Prior CCSF study/report Spurling, Seymour & Chisman 2008 Findings 80% of non-credit ESL students started at levels 1- 4, more than 50% in Level 1 or Literacy only 9% of these advanced to Intermediate levels or above (5-9) Conclusion lack of advancement to higher levels represents a failure of the ESL program to provide students with means to succeed

43 The elephant in the room Undocumented Ss needed for ADA Dont ask dont tell about legal status BUT must pay prohibitive out-of-state tuition for credit classes ($108 vs $669 per 3 unit class) Obstacles for taking CTE classes: ESL level, out of state status

44 ESL Study: Purpose Document Ss characteristics associated with movement through ESL sequence Understand why so few students continue beyond beginning level classes (1-4) to intermediate and advanced levels (5-9)

45 Study design Research questions: Do non-credit ESL levels 5-9 have proportionately more students with secondary education prior to coming to the US than levels 1-4? Which other factors might affect whether students with less formal schooling participate in intermediate and advanced classes? What are some reasons ESL students give for dropping out after level 4, and what motivated them to return?

46 Quantitative piece Capture Ss characteristics, one day in the life Survey, 13 questions Classes randomly sampled (day only for sampling reasons) 16 classes, 2 per level (1,3,5,8) Four campuses, 2 to reflect distribution of linguistic diversity of whole college, 2 to represent 2 dominant language groups Surveys translated into 7 languages for levels 1 and respondents

47 Findings: education in L1 Increasing proportion of students with secondary & post-secondary schooling with each level level 1, a majority of students students > 3 years HS level 8, few Ss > 3 yrs HS

48 Chart 1. Survey data (N=650 days students only)

49 CASAS* Test data: more dramatic N=1630 day + eve Ss Level 1 33% of Ss only primary schooling 60+% less than 10 th grade level 5 70% 10 th grade and above Level 8 80% secondary+ almost 50% post-secondary *(Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment Systems)

50 Chart 2. CASAS data (N=1,630 day and evening students)

51 ESL Study Findings: education in L1 Having more years of schooling prior to arrival in the US appears to have a significant impact on reaching level 8, but not level 5. multivariate regression analysis shows a significant correlation between prior schooling and being in level 8. strong correlation with years in the U.S. and English education prior to arrival. no significant difference between patterns of daily use of English of low-educated and high educated Ss

52 Educational attainment in L1 and placement in advanced English Table 1: Logit regression for likelihood of being in ESL 8 * significant at the.05 level ** significant at the.01 level *** significant at the.001 level. Variables Coefficient (std. error) P>z Female -.14 (.17)0.42 Age (.006)0.14 Years of schooling.06 (.02)0.01** Multilingualism.34 (.18)0.06 Years in U.S..04(.01)0.00*** Years of English prior to emigration.11 (.02)0.00*** N 291

53 Findings summary Ss with more years formal schooling more likely to have formal language instruction Ss at advanced levels had a median of 4-6 years of prior language study

54 Prior language instruction

55 Informal exposure to English students with less formal education have a higher median of years in the US than students with three plus years of secondary school informal exposure to English may help build oral proficiency and compensate for weaker academic skills

56 Years since arrival in US Level 5Level 8 8- yrs schooling yrs schooling 5 7 Difference:+8 years +2.5 years Students with less and more schooling

57 Qualitative data collection Interviewed 43 Ss over a week 3 of 4 campuses, levels 1,3,5,8 Subjects identified by teachers as few or many yrs formal schooling; if unknown, Ss either struggling or thriving in English Spanish or Cantonese

58 Qualitative study findings 1.Years of schooling not equivalent: hour days, rural and urban, etc.

59 Qualitative findings Reasons for dropping out: Interference from work, marriage, birth of a child, illness – I didnt study consecutively, I had to leave for work, back and forth, it never ends. For about 8 semesters I have come, but it was always interrupted. Other priorities – They feel that they speak English now. But they dont want to continue, and they say, Oh I learned my basic English, now I understand basic English and I can…, they feel Oh I speak English. Reasons for returning – " because I understand my English is small

60 Learning trajectories S1: 24 year-old Mexican man (12 years of schooling) __/\___________/\___________/\________________/\__ arrived ESL 1 dropped returned ESL 3 Reason for dropping: had two jobs Reason for returning: quit second job. Need for English: For a better job and to open doors

61 Learning trajectories S2: 49 year-old Vietnamese man (11 years of schooling) 1987 ? 2010 _/\_ _________________/\___________________/\___ arrived, ESL literacy A ESL 3 ESL 5 Reason for dropping: work Need for English: for me to go doctor anywhere. I dont need my kids support.

62 Learning trajectories S3: 30 year-old Mexican woman (6 years of schooling) __/\______________________/\________/\________/\_____ arrived ESL 4 dropped ESL 5 Need for English: uses English and Spanish at work, uses what shes learning in her daily life, but rarely speaks at home

63 Learning trajectories S4: 50 year-old Salvadorian man (6 years of schooling) ? ? ?2010 __/_____/_______/______________/______________/__________/__ arrived ESLs 1-4 dropped out studied for GED in Spanish, passed ESL 8 Reasons for dropping: to study for GED Need for English: offered a job as a dispatcher and needed more English. Doesnt want to take credit classes doesn't want credit, too much commitment.

64 ESL Study implications midrange of education levels in intermediate and advanced ESL classes tends to be relatively high, students with less than 9 th grade education may experience particular difficulties as they progress through the ESL sequence Interrupted learning normal for non-academic reasons extra academic support, curricula for non-academic learners at low levels flexible programs, insure that students are not penalized for interrupted study opportunities to review when Ss re-enter.

65 Study Aftermath caught in the middle, local politics report dropped Interest in another study recommending ESL be moved from CCC to adult schools

66 Future directions Applied for a grant to develop program to support less academic Ss that includes For teachers: Curriculum design based on feedback from Ss on challenges Workshops for teaching language awareness without grammar, building L2 literacies For Ss A language acquisition specialist counsellor to work on study skills, motivation to continue Tech tutoring Mp3s for use at home

67 Future directions Open discursive spaces for language ecology language as resource vs language as system measuring changes in literacy practices vs. changes in proficiency (Reder LSAL) commitment to non-academic learners use new science-based research paradigms Complexity/Dynamic systems theories (Larsen-Freeman et al)

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