Education A Washington Roundup

Defense Dept. Awards Grant for Mich. K-16 Arabic Program

By Mary Ann Zehr — October 17, 2006 1 min read

The Department of Defense has awarded a grant to Michigan State University to work with the Dearborn, Mich., public schools to institute a K-16 Arabic program.

Through the multiyear grant, provided by the Defense Department’s National Security Education Program, Michigan State will receive about $1 million during 2007, and is expected to get a similar amount annually for the duration of the grant, according to Susan Gass, a professor of linguistics and languages at the university. She said it’s not clear yet how many years the grant will last.

The Department of Education has announced an additional three-year, $800,000 grant to Becker Elementary School in Dearborn for Arabic classes. That school is one of three in the 18,200-student Dearborn district that Michigan State is initially working with to create the K-16 program. The district already enrolls about 900 students in Arabic classes. (“‘Heritage Speakers’: Loss of a Treasure?,” April 5, 2006.)

The National Security Education Program previously awarded $700,000 to the University of Oregon to work with Portland public schools to run a K-16 Chinese program. (“Students Taking Spanish, French; Leaders Pushing Chinese, Arabic,” March 29, 2006.)

A version of this article appeared in the October 18, 2006 edition of Education Week