Cross-posted on Don’t Trump Fairfax
According to the Fairfax Republicans, we can solve our ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) challenges by segregating students for a year to learn English, and then removing them from ESOL altogether.
That’s what was proposed in this maddeningly misinformed and inaccurate article co-written by Republican School Board candidate Laura Ramirez Drain and anti-tax crusader Fred Costello. The Republicans must have found it to be so wrong-headed that they had to take it down from their website. But we saved the article here.
Here’s the reality: it takes more than one year for a student to learn how to read, speak and write in the English language, so taking them out of ESOL would be damaging to say the least. On the other hand, contrary to the authors’ claims, if a student speaks another language at home but is proficient in English, then they will not need ESOL services — because that’s what happens as a result of the evaluation.
According to Costello and Ramirez Drain, FCPS is just over-classifying students as ESOL so they can get more funding. Fairfax Republicans are constantly attempting to portray our School Board as having some kind of addiction to collecting and wasting money, as if it’s for their own enrichment. It’s all part of their long-term plan to reduce the school budget. For example, Costello’s own website has a written plan to reduce teacher salaries.