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Letter: Please Don’t Eliminate Language Immersion Program

(The following letter was sent to the members of the Herricks School Board and printed here at the request of the writer.)

I received an email yesterday concerning the possible ending of the Language Immersion Program.  I felt compelled to contact all of you and tell you why I believe the Immersion Program should be kept intact.   

My daughter Annalisa participated in the pilot program this year.  The program was and is wonderful.  It has taught her the basics of a language she would have never learned.  It also was, in my opinion, responsible, for taking my once shy child out of her proverbial shell.  Each accomplishment in her second language was as if she conquered a new and wonderful mission.  The first stage of what was told to us to be a multifaceted component to our children’s education.

 To think that this might not be available to any other child is very disheartening.  I know budget money is tight and I know that all programs are “good” programs but this like immersion are virtually lost for ever once the children are in the upper elementary  grades.  If this program is stopped for those who have already started it, it would be a travesty.

 The idea that we would teach our children that you are not allowed to just drop from the program but the program can collectively drop all of them, I believe the lesson the district wants to now teach our children is very inappropriate.  Our children are taught both at home and by the school that lying is wrong.  That lying must be avoided at all costs.  Telling the truth is something we continually re-enforce and reward to our children.  So how do we explain that last year when the issue of budgets and the Immersion Program were brought up the Superintendent of Schools said it would not be a budget issue “it cost the same” as it related to teaching and “minuscule” was the word used to describe the cost of transportation. Seems like a broken promise to me if it is ended.  

Jerome J. Galluscio

(Editor’s note:  At the last Herricks School Board meeting Herricks School Superintendent Dr. John Bierwirth assured the writer that the Language Immersion Program would be continued.)