To address the statewide shortage of K-12 teachers to teach in Asian languages, the California State Fullerton College of Education leads the California State University Bilingual Teacher Education Program consortium.
Funded by the California State Legislature, the goal of the $5 million effort is to increase the number of certified teachers with an Asian bilingual mandate to teach Vietnamese, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Japanese, Hmong, Tagalog, and Khmer (Cambodian).
“The consortium represents a collective effort to support and expand bilingual teacher education programs in Asian, not only at CSU but statewide,” said the consortium program director. Natalie TranProfessor of Educational Leadership and Secondary Education at CSUF College of Education.
This funding benefits CSU bilingual licensure candidates, faculty and school districts across the state. The consortium plays an important role in meeting the growing demands for Asian bilingual immersion programs and the shortage of teachers in Orange County and California as a whole. “
With a bilingual permit, teachers can provide instruction in both English and another language, such as Korean or Vietnamese.
“There is a great need for bilingual teachers who can communicate with students and parents in their native language,” said Fernando Rodríguez Valls, professor of secondary education, and coordinator of the Bilingual Credential Program at CSUF.
Tran said CSUF distributes the money to CSU’s other seven universities in the consortium for the five-year program. CSU’s participating universities are Cal State Dominguez Hills, Cal State Long Beach, Cal State LA, Cal Poly Pomona, San Diego State, San Jose State, and Stanislaus State.
Tran anticipates that more CSU campuses will join the consortium throughout the scholarship cycle. Funds will be used for scholarships, student outreach and placement, faculty support, and administrative operations.
Current and future teachers enrolled on CSU’s campus will benefit from the consortium program through scholarships.
Teacher candidates who are interested in obtaining a teaching credential and a bilingual license in Asian languages are eligible for a $20,000 scholarship. Tran said current teachers can receive a $2,200 scholarship or enroll in required courses for free.
Through the consortium, Tran said, enrolled students can take classes at another campus to complete a bilingual permit.
Currently, CSUF College of Education offers Asian Bilingual Authorization courses in Vietnamese, Korean, and Khmer languages only.
at CSUF’s Bilingual License ProgramTran said about 20 students complete the Asian language license each year.
“We expect this number to grow as more school districts offer bilingual Asian language immersion programs in the district and across the state,” she added.
In Orange County, for example, Westminster School District, Garden Grove Unified School District, and Anaheim Union High School District offer bilingual Vietnamese programs.
The Anaheim Elementary School District and Fullerton School District offer programs in Korean.
Dual Mandarin programs are offered in the Orange Unified School District, Newport Mesa Unified School District, Capistrano Unified School District, and soon in the Anaheim Elementary School District, Tran said.
for CSUF National Resource Center for Asian LanguagesDirected by Tran, in collaboration with projects funded by the California Department of Education, such as EL RISE!It also provides professional development for teachers of Asian language.