THE SENATE                           S.C.R. NO.            131
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            
                                                             
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                    SENATE  CONCURRENT
                        RESOLUTION

  REQUESTING THE LEGISLATIVE REFERENCE BUREAU TO REVIEW THE
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION'S LANGUAGE ARTS PROGRAM FOR THE
    HAWAII CREOLE ENGLISH SPEAKING STUDENTS WITH LIMITED
    ENGLISH PROFICIENCY.


 1        WHEREAS, the United States Congress has recognized in the
 2   Bilingual Education Act of 1968 and subsequent amendments the
 3   need for bilingual education programs to help students with
 4   limited English proficiency who are at a disadvantage in the
 5   standard English-speaking classroom; and
 6   
 7        WHEREAS, the intention of Congress is to provide "seed
 8   money" for experimental programs which, when proven successful,
 9   are then to be taken over for full implementation by the
10   individual states; and
11   
12        WHEREAS, additionally, court decisions have required
13   schools to provide appropriate education for students with
14   limited English proficiency whose first language is another
15   language such as Cantonese or Mandarin, or a dialect of English
16   such as Black English; and
17   
18        WHEREAS, students in Hawaii's public schools with limited
19   English proficiency whose first language is another language
20   such as Ilocano or Vietnamese are being provided by the
21   Department of Education with a very successful bilingual
22   program called Students with Limited English Proficiency,
23   involving small classes, bilingual teachers, and bilingual
24   materials; and
25   
26        WHEREAS, the Students with Limited English Proficiency
27   program is based on an attitude of respect for the student and
28   the student's first language and culture, and allows the
29   teacher and the student to communicate in the language as
30   needed, thereby creating a supportive environment in which the
31   student gains English proficiency and higher self-esteem, which
32   in turn enhances the student's chances of succeeding in school
33   and in society; and
34   
35        WHEREAS, thousands of students in Hawaii's public schools

 
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 1   with limited English proficiency whose first language is Hawaii
 2   Creole English, commonly called "pidgin" English, are not being
 3   provided with a comparable program to help them overcome
 4   similar linguistic disadvantages; and
 5   
 6        WHEREAS, teachers and schools have been trying to provide
 7   for the needs of these students by developing materials and
 8   strategies of their own but with limited success, as reflected
 9   in the over-representation of these students among those who
10   have low test scores or are in remedial reading, special
11   education, and alternative education classes, and among those
12   who, because of low self-esteem, do not even try, or drop out
13   of school; and
14   
15        WHEREAS, the federal Office of Bilingual Education and
16   Minority Language Affairs determined in 1983 that Hawaii Creole
17   English qualifies as a language for which federal funds may be
18   expended; and
19   
20        WHEREAS, the Hawaii State Department of Education in 1984
21   applied for and received federal funds for Project Holopono, a
22   program that ran from 1984-1988 involving about 180 Hawaii
23   Creole English speaking students in eight elementary schools
24   and subsequently received a positive evaluation; and
25   
26        WHEREAS, the Hawaii State Department of Education has not
27   followed up these two successful projects with statewide
28   implementation; and
29   
30        WHEREAS, the Hawaii State House of Representatives, in
31   H.R. No. 727 (1979) and H.R. No. 371, H.D. 1 (1988) and the
32   Hawaii State Teachers Association at its 1988 state convention
33   have, by resolution, urged the Hawaii State Department of
34   Education to develop and implement an appropriate program for
35   the Hawaii Creole English speaking students with limited
36   English proficiency, which resulted in unproductive responses;
37   now, therefore,
38   
39        BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Twentieth Legislature
40   of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 1999, the House of
41   Representatives concurring, that the Legislative Reference
42   Bureau is requested to review the adequacy of the Department of

 
 
 
 
 
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 1   Education's language arts program for Hawaii Creole English
 2   speaking students with limited English proficiency; and
 3   
 4        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this review include:
 5   
 6        (1)  The number of students whose first language is Hawaii
 7             Creole English and have limited English proficiency;
 8   
 9        (2)  A comparison and interpretation of standardized test
10             scores of these students and English speaking
11             students, including patterns of test results in
12             reading comprehension, vocabulary, math computation,
13             and word-problem solving;
14   
15        (3)  A comparison of the proportion of these students in
16             the total student population who are in remedial
17             reading classes, special education classes, and
18             alternative programs, and those who have dropped out
19             of school;
20   
21        (4)  The extent to which positive or negative attitudes
22             toward these students and Hawaii Creole English are
23             reflected by the school in rules, policies, and
24             practices, explicit or implicit, that encourage,
25             tolerate, discourage, or ban the use of Hawaii Creole
26             English in class and on the playground;
27   
28        (5)  The extent to which these students are helped to make
29             the transition from Hawaii Creole English to standard
30             English through the use of more extensive reading
31             readiness activities, by allowing the use of Hawaii
32             Creole English, their first language, in class
33             discussions, storytelling, and creative writing, by
34             developing and adapting reading material for these
35             students, and by providing them with more extensive
36             instruction in vocabulary development;
37   
38        (6)  The extent to which schools are using the Keaukaha
39             Project and the Hawaii English Program materials and
40             the Language-Experience-Thinking based strategies,
41             which the Department of Education has cited over the
42             years as helpful in teaching these students, and

 
 
 
 
 
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                                  S.C.R. NO.            131
                                                        
                                                        

 
 1             materials developed by Projects Holopono and Akamai;
 2   
 3        (7)  A survey of teachers and students regarding the need
 4             for a program for Hawaii Creole English speaking
 5             students with limited English proficiency; and
 6   
 7        (8)  An inquiry into whether the Hawaii State Department
 8             of Education, having received federal funds for
 9             Projects Holopono and Akamai, is now obligated to
10             implement a program statewide for these students;
11   
12    and
13   
14        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Legislative Reference
15   Bureau is requested to gather information from the Department
16   of Education, the University of Hawaii College of Education,
17   the Hawaii State Teachers Association, the Hawaii Parent,
18   Teacher, and Student Association, and all of the public
19   schools; and
20   
21        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Legislative Reference
22   Bureau is requested to report its findings to the Legislature
23   twenty days prior to the convening of the regular session of
24   2000; and
25   
26        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this
27   Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Director of the
28   Legislative Reference Bureau, the Chairperson of the Board of
29   Education, the Superintendent of Education, the President of
30   the University of Hawaii, the President of the Hawaii State
31   Teachers Association, the President of the Hawaii State Parent,
32   Teacher, and Student Association, and all public school
33   principals.
34   
35 
36 
37 
38                         OFFERED BY:  ____________________________