Lessons in Learning – October 2, 2008
Series: Lessons in Learning
Authors: Canadian Council on Learning (CCL)
Collection: Research Materials
In this document, the authors explore the implications of research that shows wide variations in learning outcomes among sub-groups of English as a Second Language (ESL) students in schools in Canada’s largest cities.
They point to one British Columbia study that showed substantially higher graduation rates among Chinese-speaking student populations than among native English speakers and other language groups. In contrast, graduation rates among Spanish- and Vietnamese-speaking populations are significantly lower than among other ESL students.
Such findings, which are also reflected in studies carried out in Toronto and Montreal, highlight the need to look beneath labels like “ESL” and “immigrant students” to observe wide variation in the outcomes of students covered by these labels.
The authors recommend that resources available to support ESL students should be directed toward identifiable groups most in need of such help.