Faces of Bilingual Education : A Personal Account of the Bilingual Program at Roosevelt Elementary School in St. Paul, Minnesota
Janssens, Michelle D.
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I came to Roosevelt Elementary School and to the West Side of St. Paul in search of a story. I have always been intrigued by the power of communication and the complexity of language. Through my own language learning experiences, I have felt how language can both connect and isolate an individual. The depth to which a language shapes a culture and an individual amazes me. At Roosevelt, I saw an opportunity to explore this shaping. I saw a group of students grappling with the complexities of language while also struggling to establish their own identities among conflicting cultures and numerous stereotypes. Through these students, I desired to better understand the significance of their language learning and to discover real-life faces within the much debated issues of bilingual education. My work at Roosevelt did provide me with the reality of an inner city, bilingual child's life and furthered my amazement of the power of language. Within each child's life, I found a unique and compelling story.
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