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  1. #1
    Senior Member FedUpinFarmersBranch's Avatar
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    BS-English-only school could hamper students, principal says

    Wednesday, August 20, 2008
    English-only school could hamper students, principal says
    By PETER SCHELDEN
    Staff Writer
    Comments 51| Recommend 32

    The principal of Marco Forster Middle School, which a parent last week complained is run like a "Mexican public school," says all students are well-served there and that teaching students about a variety of cultures can ultimately lead to understanding.

    At a recent school board meeting, Capistrano Unified School District Superintendent A. Woodrow Carter distributed a two-page statement defending multiculturalism at Marco Forster.

    The statement was in response to a letter to the district from parent Kim McCarthy, who wrote that the San Juan Capistrano school is operated like a "Mexican public school," noting that students often speak Spanish instead of English on campus and that a Mexican flag is prominent in a school mural.

    The letter landed McCarthy a guest spot on the popular radio talk show "John and Ken" on KFI/AM 640.

    Marco Forster Principal Carrie Bertini said the school prints materials in Spanish and encourages students with Spanish-speaking parents to translate teachers' concerns and other school information to them in Spanish.

    She said the school tries to emphasize all cultures.

    "If I was teaching in Westminster and I had a large Korean or Vietnamese population, we'd be doing exactly the same thing to support those students," Bertini said. "Those schools translate information into Vietnamese and Korean. I find it interesting that the only negative attention is when it's done to serve the Hispanic population."

    McCarthy says her concerns are cultural, not racial.

    "I think people are frustrated with feeling like the English language has become second and not as important, and it's created a lot of divisiveness," McCarthy said. "We all want to live together and not separate. I feel the biggest disservice here is being done to the Hispanic children. The CUSD is culturally dividing those people. The Hispanic children have a tougher time unless they assimilate, and assimilation will bring friendship."

    But Bertini said a lack of cultural understanding and knowledge tends to lead to fear and prejudice.

    She added that if students do not translate for their Spanish-speaking parents, they could be put at an educational disadvantage.

    "We don't have translators," Bertini said. "We would be damaging ourselves or limiting ourselves if we did not have outstanding school-to-home communication. That disadvantage will impact the students and their performance."

    McCarthy said she has been contacted by many people since her radio interview and that most appreciated her position.

    "I can't believe how many people have contacted me, and it's all been positive," McCarthy said. "These children need to become Americans, and they can go home and speak Spanish at home. We are all Americans in the public schools, and that's what we speak — English."

    Bertini said she wishes McCarthy had raised her concerns while her daughter, who has moved on to high school, was still attending Marco Forster. Bertini said she has an open-door policy with parents and is happy to discuss their concerns.

    "This mother never spoke to me before their kids were gone," Bertini said. "I could have had some great conversations with her and maybe given some insight into some of the concerns they have."

    According to the California Department of Education, 33 percent of Marco Forster's seventh-graders last year were Spanish-speaking English-learners. Latinos made up about 55 percent of the student body during the 2006-07 school year, according to a state report published in the past school year.

    According to Superintendent Carter, Marco Forster has improved its academic rating by nearly 100 points since 1999 — more than any middle school in the district.


    Contact the writer: pschelden@ocregister.com or 949-492-5128
    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/scho ... s-mccarthy
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  2. #2
    Senior Member lccat's Avatar
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    Don't be concerned, the ILLEGALS do not have any intention of learning English! They want to take over the United States for their Third World “home

  3. #3
    Senior Member miguelina's Avatar
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    "If I was teaching in Westminster and I had a large Korean or Vietnamese population, we'd be doing exactly the same thing to support those students," Bertini said. "Those schools translate information into Vietnamese and Korean. I find it interesting that the only negative attention is when it's done to serve the Hispanic population."
    I find it interesting that only the hispanic population plays the race card and demands everything in Spanish. Seems everyone else has no problem assimilating.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member ShockedinCalifornia's Avatar
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    I think these Spanish bilingual public schools are trying their best at UNDOING the English language in America.

    If they really wanted to uniformly teach in order to transition non-English speakers to English there would be mandatory exclusively English prep classes. There should be no foreign languages spoken in regular school curriculums except as an elective class. I don't care where the family is from! I agree with Mrs. McCarthy that Spanish, or whatever, can be spoken at home.

    ENGLISH IS THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE OF CALIFORNIA. The public school system is derelict and negligent if it does not recognize this and prepare its students accordingly.

  5. #5
    Senior Member butterbean's Avatar
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    She added that if students do not translate for their Spanish-speaking parents, they could be put at an educational disadvantage.
    The students spanish-speaking parents need to learn English! These illegal aliens and their kids are keeping American studnts at an "educational disavantage" by demanding everything for themselves.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member lccat's Avatar
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    Seems as if the comment I left on the source article has been deleted!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by lccat
    Seems as if the comment I left on the source article has been deleted!
    Its the OC Register Iccat! They have never met an illegal invader they didn't feel the need to defend! Now you understand why I canceled my subcription to this illegal invader rag!
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