The high number of English language learners (ELLs) has brought a change in the demographics of public schools and a need to account for the educational experiences of these students, both linguistically and academically. A comprehensive English language development program that facilitates English language acquisition has never been comprehensively articulated and evaluated. This paper argues that robust and rigorous research could be highly useful for policy and education practice modifications. The expanded utilization of dual-language programs is a hopeful sign of that possibility as they offer an alternative with solid empirical evidence for success in selected populations and specific conditions.
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This paper comes from an Urban Institute roundtable on young children of immigrants funded by the Foundation for Child Development.