June 14, 2009

"Eminence credentials" for Indians

Tribes reclaim languages once spoken in California

By Peter HechtLawmakers are moving on a bill to create a special American Indian languages teaching credential to promote efforts to teach–and recapture–some of the nearly 100 languages once spoken by California Indians.

The measure–Assembly Bill 544 by Democrat Joe Coto of San Jose–declares that "teaching American Indian languages is essential to the proper education of American Indian children."

The bill would also allow fluent speakers to teach special classes in public schools as part of understanding California history and culture.

The limited "eminence credential" could enable some tribal elders with little formal education to give lectures on ancient languages widely spoken before the Gold Rush.

1 comment:

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