As some districts in CA struggle to expand their bilingual programs under a new state law, more than a dozen school districts and county offices of education have received state funding to increase the number of bilingual teachers — an effort that has been hindered by an ongoing teacher shortage.
CA’s new law went into effect July 1, 2017 as a result of Proposition 58, approved by voters in November 2016. The law effectively repealed Prop. 227, the English-only initiative that had been in place since 1998. The new law allows more schools to create bilingual or dual-immersion programs, in which English learners are in classes with native English speakers learning to speak another language. Prop. 227 required that all English learners be taught in English-only classrooms unless a parent signed a waiver allowing entry to a bilingual program.