Have We Learned Our Language Lesson?

In Spite of Massachusetts’ Decade-Old English Only Law, Two-Way Bilingual Programs Demonstrate Promise and Enjoy Enduring Popularity

Story by Susan Eaton
Photos and Video by Gina Chirichigno

Ten years ago, Massachusetts voters approved contentious English-only law that effectively banned bilingual education in its public schools Largely overlooked in the political battle, though, what that this law did not apply to the several “two-way” bilingual/dual immersion schools that bring children from distinct linguistic backgrounds together to learn in two languages. A decade later, these ethnically and linguistically integrated schools provide a hopeful contrast to a largely disappointing “English-only” mandate. The CHHIRJ project ONE NATION INDIVISIBLE explores the benefits of this promising approach in our increasingly diverse state and nation. You can find the story, photos, video and other resources here.