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Language Program Aims to Keep Hispanic Students in School

In Raleigh, NC, the Hispanic population is rapidly increasing. At the same pace, there seems to be a increase in high school dropouts. In Wake County, 17 percent of high school dropouts are Hispanic, but a new English language boot camp aims to reverse the trend.

To reduce the number of dropouts, the Wake County Public School System plans to start an ESL Academy at Cary, Garner and Wakefield high schools.The program would offer nearly all-day English instruction, instead of the one-hour ESL classes currently offered.Regulations under the federal No Child Left Behind program require ESL students to take the same end-of-grade and end-of-course tests as other students.School officials liken the ESL Academy to a language boot camp, funded with federal money. The goal is to keep Hispanic students in school.

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