Money, oversight for John Adams bilingual program

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Budget season may feel as though it just ended, but the Alexandria School Board held its first public hearing on the as-yet undefined financial plan for fiscal year 2013 Thursday night.

John Adams Elementary School parents Sharon Yandian and Nora Mead were among the few who spoke, calling on the board to bolster the West End institutions dual language program. Describing the classes as weak and bare-boned, Yandian asked school officials to provide more money and oversight to the John Adams program. 

Teacher retention remains problematic, as do educational assessments theres no data on Spanish achievement and public awareness about the program remains low, the two mothers said. 

My daughter is bilingual and I am a native Spanish speaker and my husband is a native English speaker, Mead said. We would like our children to be proud of, and capable of, speaking in two languages … The program [consists of] 20 percent of the student body, but lacks the support I expected.

Sherman pledged his support to the programs growth. 

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