Bilingual ed backed by 58% in U.S., poll says
July 9, 2003
By Eric Hubler, Education Writer
Most Americans favor bilingual education, with support especially strong
among Hispanics, African- Americans, young adults and Democrats, the Gallup
polling organization said Tuesday.
Seventy-two percent of Hispanics and 73 percent of blacks polled by Gallup June
12-18 supported bilingual education, which means using the native language of a
non- English-speaking student as a classroom aid for several years until he or
she learns English. Fifty- three percent of whites favored the idea, Gallup
Overall, 58 percent of Americans were in support.
Democrats were likelier than Republicans to favor bilingual education - 69
percent versus 46 percent - as were younger adults. Seventy-five percent of
18-to-29- year-olds supported bilingual education, but only 44 percent of those
65 or older did.
Colorado voters rejected a constitutional ban on bilingual education in
November, but voters in California, Arizona and Massachusetts approved such
bans. Foes of such education say it hampers acquisition of English and academic
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has advocated English immersion in the
past, recently committed $20 million to strengthen the city's bilingual
The poll reached 1,385 adults and has an error margin of plus or minus 3