Tag: Social Economics

Trapped in ESL: Some students wind up in English-learner programs even though they only speak English

Julian Ruiz is an English speaker who doesn't know a word of Spanish or any other foreign language. Yet when the 7-year-old entered kindergarten in Torrance three years ago, he was classified as an English learner - a student not fluent in English. His mother says he is trapped in the school district's English Language Development program, giving him a label he doesn't deserve.

Read more

California’s English language learners getting stuck in schools’ remedial programs

Melanie Perez wishes she could have played the saxophone. Octavio Reyes would have liked to take a computer science class. Both students at San Pedro High School say they can't sign up for these electives because, at some point in their school careers, they were stuck having to take remedial classes for English learners - even though both speak English fluently and have performed reasonably well on English tests.

Read more

State’s Dream Act doesn’t help students near graduation

From coast to coast, the passage of the California Dream Act has prompted loud cheers from supporters and bitter outrage from critics. But for Vilma Nerio, a senior at California State University, Dominguez Hills, in Carson - and an undocumented student - last weekend's signing by Gov. Jerry Brown felt almost inconsequential.

Read more

Christmas Unwrapped

Traditionally, Christmas is known as a day of traveling, eating, unwinding and unwrapping. But not everyone in Santa Barbara is experiencing a traditional Christmas Day. Today, as thousands indulge in the joys of tearing paper, laughing children, sentimental music and hot cider, others in Santa Barbara will march to the beat of a different drummer boy. They will wait for emergency calls at a fire station, serve food at a swanky hotel in Montecito, counsel dangerous inmates in the Santa Barbara County Jail or lie dying in a hospice.

Read more