Language Policy and Education in the United States

Part of the Encyclopedia of Language and Education book series (LANG, volume 1)


The purpose of this review is to provide a balanced description of important aspects of language policy in the U.S. as they relate, either directly or indirectly, to educational practices in the United States. Language policies derive from the following sources: official enactments of governing bodies or authorities, such as legislation, executive directives, judicial orders or decrees, or policy statements; and non-official institutional or individual practices or customs. Policies may also evolve as a consequence of actions governments do not take, for example, by not providing support for the teaching or learning of a particular language, or language variety, or by designating and promoting an official language and ignoring other languages, or by failing to provide adequate resources to ensure all groups have equal opportunities to acquire the official language in educational settings. Policies may also evolve from grass roots movements and become formalized through laws, practices, or some combination of both. In this review, theoretical perspectives on language policy and education will be addressed only briefly (for background information, see Wiley 1996a; also see reviews by Christian & Rhodes in Volume 4; and by McCarty and by Faltis in Volume 5).


Language Policy Official Language Language Minority Bilingual Education Language Planning 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of Texas at San AntonioUSA

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