Author Topic: GCISD Parents Say Students Forced To Learn Spanish  (Read 996 times)

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Offline CactusCarlos

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GCISD Parents Say Students Forced To Learn Spanish
« on: February 01, 2008, 10:33:04 PM »

GRAPEVINE (CBS 11 News) ― A fight over language in a Grapevine school has gotten so heated that some parents are pulling their children out of class.

The parents are claiming that students are being forced to learn Spanish, while children of immigrants aren't being forced to learn or speak English.

The signs posted around Timberline Elementary are done in both English and Spanish, and so are the school letters and other information.

Officials with the Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District say it's their duty to educate all students. But some white students and their parents say they are now the minority and are left with no choice, but to fight.

Kaitlyn O'Pry, a fifth grader at Timberline, is protesting her school. "If I didn't take Spanish, then I'm probably going to fail," the 10 year-old said.

Kaitlyn is not alone. Ashley Allison's mom has pulled her out of Spanish class each day, to study in the library. "I'm not real happy with the issue," said Ashley's mom, Leigh Allison.

Kaitlyn has begun circulating a letter, which many students have signed, opposing the elementary schools mandatory Spanish classes.

Some parents say accommodations are being made for a growing Hispanic population. Kaitlyn claims that, "Over half of our school has doubled in Spanish population." Kaitlyn's mom, Julie Swartz, says the school isn't focusing on the entire student population. "I think they're concentrating way too much on accommodating the Spanish speaking kids," she told TXA 21 News.

In 2001 Hispanics made up 33-percent of Timberline Elementary enrollment, with white students accounting for 60-percent. Now in 2008, Hispanics account for more than half of the student body, and white enrollment is down to 36-percent.

The girls and their parents have met with their principal, the Grapevine-Colleyville School Board, and the superintendent. The opposition is garnering other support, including that of Dora Deleon. "This is a country America, with English. So we supposed to learn to speak English," said the concerned Hispanic mother, whose grandchildren attend Timberline.

Kaitlyn's stepfather, Patrick Swartz, says, "They should not be forced to take Spanish."

But there are some parents who embrace the Spanish initiatives at Timberline. "It develops our kids," said parent Tia Green.

The girls and their supporters say they're not giving up the fight.
"The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism, but under the name of liberalism they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program until one day America will be a socialist nation without ever knowing how it happened."
  -- Norman Thomas, six-time Socialist Party presidential candidate and one of the founders of the ACLU