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More people should be able to teach English as a second language

November 17, 1999
By: Sakina Dewji
State Capital Bureau
Missouri's immigrant workers may have a better chance at learning English. Sakina Dewji has the story from Jefferson City.

In a meeting of a joint committee on immigration, state lawmakers pinpointed an inability to speak English as the largest problem for Missouri's immigrant population.

With this in mind, the qualification requirements of instructors who teach English to immigrants may be lowered in an attempt to attract more teachers.

Celestine Ferguson, spokeswoman for the department of elementary and secondary education said that a lack of formalized education has hurt some candidates.

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Senator Marvin Singleton of Joplin argued that the educational establishments were simply too resistant to changing the existing structure.

From Jefferson City, Sakina Dewji.

More individuals may have the right to teach English to Missouri's immigrant population if state lawmakers have their way. Sakina Dewji has the story from Jefferson City.

In a meeting of the joint committee on immigration, legislators concluded that many of the struggles of Missouri's immigrants stem from their inability to speak English.

Committee member Marvin Singleton, a Senator from Joplin, told legislators that learning English as fast as possible would be the most effective solution to this problem. However, current teacher requirements have lowered the number of potential teachers.

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A representative from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education argued that requirements could not be waived since there was more to teaching than just the language skills.

From Jefferson City, Sakina Dewji