This qualitative study examines the experiences of Korean-American students, parents and teachers in a newly instituted 50/50 Korean-English dual language immersion programme, where the majority of the students are of Korean descent. Based on home and school observations, as well as interviews with six Korean-American students and their parents and teachers, the data provided insights into the perceived benefits and challenges of participation in a dual language immersion programme. Although parents and children recognised the potential of the programme to develop bilingualism and biculturalism and foster stronger ethnic identity, they also perceived inequities in the ways in which the programme was organised and instruction was executed. The characteristics of the programme brought forth tensions for the parents and teachers in terms of expectations for language development in English vs. Korean, academic outcomes of bilingual vs. English-only education, parental involvement among Korean vs. non-Korean parents and instructional needs of Korean vs. non-Korean students. Furthermore, the analysis highlighted both shared perspectives as well as perspectives that were unique to children, parents and teachers arising from their different roles in the school. Implications for improved practices and policies for dual language immersion programmes for the less commonly taught languages are provided.
Family and Community Involvement
Dual Language Programs