A message from PSMLA's Advocacy Committee:
Please consider contacting your legislators to support funding World Language education programs, specifically WLARA. There is a deadline of April 22 to reach out to your Representatives. For more details, check the JNCL-NCLIS webpage.
Many thanks for your consideration in this effort.
JNCL-NCLIS representative for PSMLA
As a constituent and language advocate, I am writing to you to let you know that Representatives Price and Young are circulating a Dear Colleague letter on FY22 funding for the World Language Advancement and Readiness Grants Program. The letter seeks $15 million for the grants program through the FY22 Department of Defense Appropriations Bill. I urge you to sign on to this letter before the deadline of April 22nd.
About one-fifth of America's population speaks a language other than English at home, and only a fraction of this group speaks, reads, and comprehends a second language well. Multiple GAO reports have cited shortfalls of language and culture skills in the U.S. military and intelligence community, finding that our nation's language deficit could threaten our priorities and missions around the globe. A 2017 Congressionally commissioned report from The Commission on Language Learning of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences found that "by several measures, the United States has neglected languages in its educational curricula, its international strategies, and its domestic policies.
The World Language Advancement and Readiness Grants Program is critical for addressing our nation's language deficit by bolstering world language education. Specifically, it provides three-year competitive grants to eligible Department of Defense and public schools for world language programs. It concentrates 75% of grant funding on programs for languages critical to national security, with the remaining 25% devoted to programs for any natural human language. Schools receiving grants can use it for: intensive summer language professional development programs; the sequential study of a world language for students, beginning in elementary schools; dual language immersion and partial language immersion programs; and more.
Please do not hesitate to reach out if I can be of assistance.