Measure 58

Text of Measure

BE IT ENACTED BY THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF OREGON;

A new section shall be added to and made part of the Oregon Revised Statutes, which section shall read:

Section 1. English immersion required in public schools. English is the language of opportunity in America. Learning English opens doors to better jobs and opportunities. The only way to fully learn about American culture, and what makes America truly unique, is through our common bond of the English language. Therefore, it is the policy of the State of Oregon that public school students, who are not proficient in English and students for whom English is a second language, shall be immersed in English, not sidelined for an extended period of time, but mainstreamed with English speaking students in the shortest time possible. To that end:

(a) If a non-English speaking student first enters the public school system at the kindergarten through the fourth grade level, English immersion classes shall be limited to not more than one year, after which time the student shall be taught exclusively in English.

(b) If a non-English speaking student enters the public school system at the fifth grade through the eighth grade level, English immersion shall be limited to not more than one year and a half of a year, after which time the student shall be taught exclusively in English.

(c) If a non-English speaking student enters the public school system at the ninth grade through the twelfth grade level, English immersion shall be limited to not more than two years, after which time the student shall be taught exclusively in English.

(d) Public school students, who as of the effective date of this 2008 Act already are enrolled in and have participated in an English as a Second Language (ESL) program and are not yet ready to be taught exclusively in English, for the next school year beginning on or after July 1, 2009 shall be enrolled in an English immersion program as set forth in subsection (a), (b), and (c) of this section. This subsection (d) shall not apply to students who will be entering the 11th or 12th grade in the first school year beginning on or after July 1, 2009.

(e) To insure the cessation of the long term ESL programs currently in use in many of the public schools in Oregon, beginning July 1, 2009, no public school student shall be taught in a language other than English for more than two years. This section does not apply to classes which teach English speaking students a foreign language.

(f) For purposes of this section, a student shall be considered a "non-English speaking student", if the student's primary language is a language other than English and the student is not capable of being taught in English.

(g) This 2008 Act supersedes any pre-existing law, rule, or policy with which it conflicts.