Tag: languagepolicy

Congress Approves Extra $15M for World Languages

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On Monday, December 21, the U.S. Congress passed the Fiscal Year 2021 Appropriations package, which provided $15m in new funding for the World Languages Advancement and Readiness Act (WLARA), in the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA). This grant program was enacted last year, and with the appropriation, is now funded. The efforts to create and fund WLARA began...

Connecting the Dots

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Whatever the outcome of this month’s U.S. election and however bad the second wave of COVID-19 hits this winter, our world will continue to become more interconnected and more interdependent. Despite the closing of borders and the imposition of travel restrictions, the pandemic has proven how permeable national borders are to not only disease and disinformation but also cures...

Multinational Call to Invest in Language Education

“Clear and precise communication is more crucial than ever before to the health and security of every nation.” For the first time in their histories, five international academies have joined together to ask for increased investment in language education, an unprecedented collaboration at a time of global uncertainty. The Importance of Languages in Global Context: An International Call to Action is...

Challenge to Spanish Causes Outcry

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Last month, Spain’s eighth education law in democratic history was passed by congress while creating a storm of anger and protest. One of the most controversial aspects of the bill is the elimination of a passage stating that Castilian Spanish (Castellano) is the “vehicular language” of Spain. Right wing commentators view this as a concession to Cataluña’s “linguistic immersion”...

New Bipartisan Native American Language Bill

The short documentary "Durbin Feeling: Language Is Everything" honors the Cherokee linguist after whom the legislation is named.
On October 30, U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.), vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) commemorated the 30th anniversary of the Native American Languages Act (NALA) with the announcement of new bipartisan legislation, the Durbin Feeling Native American Languages Act of 2020, to ensure the federal government is living up to policies and principles set out in NALA...

Call to Reimagine English Learner Education

Group of multi-ethnic five little kids children African American, asian and Caucasian happiness together with friend to draw colour pencil to full colour of picture in living room or class room
Coalition for English Learner Equity issues a call to help address the education disparities faced by English Learners across the U.S. The Coalition for English Learner Equity (CELE), a group of national education leaders and organizations, working together to improve educational outcomes for linguistically and culturally diverse students, has launched a new national effort to help address the education disparities...

Coronavirus Language Access Act Introduced to Senate

Doctor checking Asian senior patient wearing a face mask in hospital for protection from infection
U.S. Senators Mark R. Warner (D-VA), Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI), Bob Casey (D-PA), and Kamala Harris (D-CA) have introduced the Coronavirus Language Access Act, which expands access to coronavirus-related resources by increasing language access services and supporting culturally appropriate COVID-19 response programs to help those who have limited English proficiency (LEP), older Americans, and people with disabilities. “We’ve seen that...

German Gender Disagreement

Students on university campus keeping social distance and wearing face masks due to coronavirus
The Association for German Language (GfdS) is calling for end to the practice of using an asterisk to make gender-specific nouns seem gender-neutral in German, reports Deutsche Welle. In the same way that the asterisk has been used in the U.S. to create gender-neutral words like Latinx, it has been used more and more frequently in German media and public...

Welsh Speakers Urged to Create Digital Recordings

Welsh speakers worldwide are being asked to help safeguard the future of the Welsh language by recording their voices using Common Voice, an initiative run by the free software community Mozilla to improve digital services in the Welsh language. The aim is to help technologies including phones, computers, and other electronic devices understand how people speak Welsh in order to make voice recognition open and accessible...

Louisiana Joins La Francophonie

The state of Louisiana is now a member of the International Organization of La Francophonie (IOF). Its application as an observer member was accepted on October 11 by the organization’s member states at their biannual summit in Armenia, along with Ireland, Gambia, and Malta. The 54 full members of the OIF unanimously approved Louisiana’s application at the 17th summit of La...
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