Education Week reports on the increase of African refugees who are moving to Columbus, Ohio and the challenges of teaching students with little or no previous education. "While Somalis at the elementary level participate in regular ESL programs, older Somali children can attend one of two 'welcome centers' at the middle and high school levels before entering a regular ESL program." Students in the Welcome Centers "may interact with native-born American students at lunch or during electives . . . all of the core academic classes are self-contained. . . Students are further divided into six levels according to their literacy skills . . . Their central philosophy is that immigrant students should be placed in a transitional, self-contained program for a short time to learn ESL and academic content before attending regular schools." This article reports on the benefits of these programs, but also raises the concerns of Somali community organizations who disagree.
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