In previous years, immigrant children were thrown into an English- language school system with little special help. Some had difficulty and dropped out; others mastered the language and did well. In any event, the public schools were regarded as a great assimilating agency. In recent years, this policy has been attacked as disrespectful to the non-English language group.and as burdensome to the immigrant child. Consequently, bilingual education (for the non-English-speaking child only) has been made mandatory in every school district in which twenty or more students .speak a foreign language as their native language.
The program suffers from a confusion of objectives, because its advocates are divided on whether the goal of bilingual education is simple to smooth the transition to English or to maintain knowledge of a foreign’ language and help preserve ethnic-group identity. Evidence is inconclusive as to whether bilingual education aids or delays students in learning to use the English language [Danoff, 1978, p.14].