As the state continues to advance early childhood education, the unique characteristics ofincluding their emerging bilingualism and their cultural strengths need to be integrated into our policies and practices. DLLs make up one in four children in the state’s TK-12 system, and 60 percent of California’s children age birth to five live in a household where a language other than English is spoken. If adequately supported, DLLs will make valuable contributions to the state’s multicultural identity, and its economy. If their language and culture are not nurtured in these early years, the state not only risks losing potential social and economic benefits from DLLs’ bilingualism but also also imperils children’s future prospects as they fall behind their monolingual peers in and out of the classroom.
Capitalizing on California’s Diversity Today, for a Brighter Tomorrow
A child’s early years of life are marked by an incredible capacity for growth and learning. For the majority of California’s young children, this potential is magnified by their linguistic and cultural diversity. California’s Gold opens a dialogue on how best to support dual language learners in the early years.
This framework opens a dialogue about how to integrate preschool with the early primary grades and improve DLL/EL education. It marks an opportunity for improvement in early childhood education on behalf of Dual Language Learners (, and encourages new state policy developments seeking to advance the education of older English language learners.
Key Areas for Action
Workforce DevelopmentA strong workforce of teachers and administrators responsive to the unique learning needs of DLLs.
Curriculum & InstructionCurricular and instructional models and resources attuned to the diverse learning needs of DLLs.
AssessmentAssessment approaches that more accurately depict and measure how DLLs are learning.
An Aligned PreK-3 SystemAn integrated early childhood and TK-12 system that recognizes the importance of continuity and coherence with the early childhood period and that meets the needs of DLLs.