How Discrimination Nearly Stalled a Dual-Language Program in Boston – The Atlantic

“Dual-language programs have been growing in popularity nationally for several years now, spurred on by demand among native speakers of common languages as well as monolingual English speakers who want all the benefits that come from bilingualism.

In Boston, however, it has taken a long time to get enough people—and the right people—to agree Haitian Creole deserved to join Spanish in the public schools’ dual-language program. And it wasn’t only district administrators who had to be convinced. The Haitian community wasn’t entirely on board, either.

“Brain research has shown people who are bilingual perform better on a range of cognitive tasks, and long-term studies of students in dual-language programs show they score higher than their peers on standardized tests by middle school. When it comes to students who show up to school speaking a language other than English, dual-language programs that pair English with their native language have been the only ones shown to remove stubborn achievement gaps between these students and their native-English-speaking peers, according to the leading dual-language researchers Virginia Collier and Wayne Thomas.”

Source: How Discrimination Nearly Stalled a Dual-Language Program in Boston

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Multilingual people make better employees because their brains are structured differently — Quartz

“When speakers from different language backgrounds work together using a common language, they draw on subconscious concepts that lie below the surface of the language they happen to be conversing in.

For example, in the German mind, the English word “put” conjures up different images: “legen” means to lie horizontally, “setzen” to make something sit, and “stellen” to stand something vertically. Each of these meanings automatically gives the German speaker access to new ways of approaching a practical problem. In this way, using different languages in collaboration may lead to new connections being made, especially when dealing with complex tasks.”

Source: Multilingual people make better employees because their brains are structured differently — Quartz