Chapter

The Education Transformation

Ginger Thompson

in Writing Immigration

Published by University of California Press

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780520267176
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520950207 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520267176.003.0010
The Education Transformation

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This chapter argues that in the past decade immigration has fueled the most robust growth in public schools since the baby boom, severely straining the capacity of districts already short on resources needed to serve students with special needs, and putting classrooms on the front lines of the U.S.'s fights over how to assimilate immigrants and their children. Making matters more complex yet, the mass influx of English-language learners coincided with the federal No Child Left Behind law, arguably the most sweeping education reform in modern American history. The chapter also claims that schools across the country were thrust into the cross-currents of a severe economic crisis and an anti-immigrant firestorm that shifted the terms of the national debate from how to best educate immigrant children to whether those living here illegally should be educated at all. Based on previous work with education reporters, researchers, and school officials across the United States, the chapter shares the challenges trying to cover education in a time of deep demographic change, educational crisis, and political malaise.

Keywords: United States; immigration; immigrants; public schools; education; immigrant children; No Child Left Behind; economic crisis

Chapter.  4993 words. 

Subjects: Migration Studies

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