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Publication: Early Learning Nation
Date: June 2022
Benefits Include Stronger Attendance, English Language Development and Early Literacy
Bilingual educators weren’t immune to the COVID-19 burnout that hit teachers this year. For example, last October, Illinois school districts reported 98 vacancies for bilingual educators. In the early childhood setting, that dearth of bilingual teachers could hurt students in the long run.
A 2021 report from the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research and the Latino Policy Forum argues that policymakers should consider prioritizing English Learners (ELs) for access to pre-K programs, especially those arriving with lower English skills and students with identified disabilities. Any plan to increase access to those services should include recruiting and retaining a bilingual workforce for the early childhood settings, the report adds.