Amendment 31 – who does it impact? |

Amendment 31 – who does it impact?

Kenny Teitler

Dear Editor,

Amendment 31 is titled “English Language Education for Children in Public Schools,” but in essence it limits the amount of English support a child can receive in the public school.

Colorado has an estimated 70,000 second-language learners in the public school system, and of those 70,000 students, only 10 percent are in any type of bilingual education program. The biggest impact of Amendment 31 will be on the roughly 63,000 second-language learners who are not part of a bilingual education program but who currently receive English as a second language (ESL) support services.

If Amendment 31 goes into law, all second-language learners will be placed in regular classrooms regardless of their level of English proficiency after just one year of English language instruction.

Currently a second-language learner can receive classes in English language support from an ESL teacher until they are proficient in English.

Studies on language acquisition show that it takes on average 2-3 years to acquire a strong oral language base and 5-7 years to become fluent in academic language. Amendment 31 would negatively impact the support that a second language learner could receive in English.

Please vote no on Amendment 31.

Kenny Teitler


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