Immigrants in the Heartland

This three-part series—running in installments on May 4, May 11, and May 18, 2005—examines the influx of immigrant students into six heartland states and the impact those students are having on public schools.

Like a growing number of other places in America’s heartland, West Liberty, Iowa, is watching its share of minority students shift into the majority. With the federal No Child Left Behind Act pushing schools to improve instruction for immigrant as well as U.S.-born students, raising test scores will be no easy task, as many Hispanic students here are still learning English.
May 18, 2005 – Education Week

By and large, teachers in the southeastern corner of Missouri known as the Bootheel have been slow to seek out added training to teach English as a second language. Although some districts in the Bootheel have dozens of English-language learners and others have only a few, training in teaching students with limited English skills is becoming more critical.
May 11, 2005 – Education Week

The influx of immigrants that has shifted the demographics in border states and urban centers across the country is taking root in interior states such as Arkansas, Iowa, and Oklahoma. And while the scope of change is far less dramatic in that region, the impact on schools is nonetheless significant—and growing.
May 4, 2005 – Education Week

In a demographic shift that is ahead of the state as a whole, but representative of many small towns in the region, Hispanics make up nearly 27 percent of the enrollment in the 800-student Hennessey school district, up from 18.2 percent in the 2000-01 school year. The district is one of four in Oklahoma to launch a two-way language-immersion program.
May 4, 2005 – Education Week

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