school board reverse chinese language program decision

In Janesville, Wisconsin, the school board recently voted to reverse a decision making it mandatory for elementary school students to take a Chinese language class: Janesville School Board Reverses Chinese Program Decision.

Third through fifth grade students at Roosevelt and Harrison elementary schools in Janesville are required to take Chinese. But a few weeks ago, the school board voted 5-2 to make the Chinese program optional for students.

The language program was approved earlier this year, but it created controversy this fall when some parents complained that it shouldn't be mandatory. I guess that shouldn't really come as a surprise.

Some parents were apparently upset about everything from time being taken away from other subjects to concerns of Chinese culture and religion being included in lessons. Now, the administration has to come up with changes to the program.

First of all, props to Janesville schools for trying to teach kids Chinese. But I suppose it was inevitable that parents would complain. It's Chinese, after all. It's weird and it's foreign and it's not English.

I've just never understood the staunch resistance to letting kids learn a language other than English. Now, some kids will probably miss out. But you know they're going to regret that when the Chinese ultimately take over.

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