Chapter

Improving Indigenous Children’s Educational Access and Outcomes Through Intercultural Bilingual Education

Brittany Lambert

in Lessons in Educational Equality

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199755011
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918867 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199755011.003.0010
Improving Indigenous Children’s Educational Access and Outcomes Through Intercultural Bilingual Education

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Belonging to a minority or Indigenous group is one of the greatest obstacles to a quality education. This case study examines how Bolivia successfully increased enrollment, reduced drop-out rates and raised achievement among its majority Indigenous population through an ambitious home-language learning program implemented in 1500 schools nation-wide. The Intercultural Bilingual Education Program’s approach consisted of teaching Indigenous children to read and write in their home language first, then gradually integrating Spanish. The chapter describes how the program improved Indigenous children’s educational outcomes, increased their levels of participation and engagement in class, and improved the status of Indigenous languages. Despite these successes, the chapter also highlights several challenges that the program has encountered, including management problems, human resources problems, conceptual problems and public opinion problems.

Keywords: Indigenous children; Intercultural Bilingual Education; bilingual education; home language learning; language of instruction; linguistic equity; educational equity

Chapter.  10167 words. 

Subjects: Developmental Psychology

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