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News-Press Editorial: The shared burden of immersion's success

The opinion of the News-Press

September 07, 2013

It's fair to say that Glendale Unified's progressive dual-language immersion program, which has attracted 900 students — about 23% of them from neighboring school districts — is a popular one with the kids, their parents and educators. So much so that a couple of elementary school campuses, Verdugo Woodlands and Monte Vista, are now bursting at their seams.

Should classrooms be added to Monte Vista, where the Korean immersion program is in place, at the expense of playground space? At Verdugo Woodlands, where the Japanese program is offered, should a bungalow be added to house the library and computer facilities, thus freeing up two classrooms?

Or should the program be shifted to other elementary campuses in the district where there is more room? This option is less than ideal to parents who prefer their children are schooled closer to home.

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Maybe, it's been suggested, all Verdugo Woodlands sixth graders could be shipped to middle school.

The suggestions for solving the issues are nearly as global as the many languages currently taught by the Foreign Language Academy of Glendale program — they are truly all over the map.

Of course, it would have been ideal if the district had done a better job of forecasting the demand for this program and not instituted it at campuses where there could be a classroom shortage. But there's no time to ruminate over that now. We're glad to see that officials are taking parents' concerns into consideration and formulating a plan to resolve the overcrowding.

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