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The nation’s largest professional association of language educators has seized on the Iraq Study Group’s recent report to President Bush as a call for action to deal with America’s growing language gap.  The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) put the focus on the report’s conclusion that American interests suffer because of limited language skills.

Natomas (CA) High School French teacher Christine Lanphere was named the recipient of the 2007 ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year Award.   The presentation was made at the 40th Annual Conference and Exposition of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages in Nashville, TN on November 17, 2006. 

Voters in Oregon face a November ballot issue that could negatively impact the state’s language education programs, according to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL).  Measure 58 proposes a requirement that Oregon schools provide students with no more than two years of education in a language other than English.  Reacting to a news story on the issue, ACTFL Executive Director Bret Lovejoy said that Measure 58 “should cause concern among citizens who support the concept of language learning and multilingualism in particular.”

Chapel Hill, NC High School Spanish teacher Ken Stewart was named the first recipient of the ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year Award.   The presentation was made at the 39th annual conference and exposition of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages in Baltimore, MD on November 18, 2005

Your recent item concerning the Measure 58 question to be voted on by Oregon residents in November should cause concern among citizens who support the concept of language learning and multilingualism in particular.  Even in today’s challenging circumstances, this issue is too important to allow economic considerations to prevail. 

The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) has announced the five regional finalists for the second annual ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year Award.  The winner will be announced at the November 17 Opening General Session of ACTFL’s November 16-19 conference in Nashville, TN.

The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages will focus on the increasing gap in critical language proficiency that has gained increasing attention in the U.S.  The association will convene its 40th Annual Conference and Exposition at the Convention Center in Downtown Nashville, TN from November 16-19, 2006.  At the forefront of the conference will be ACTFL’s Discover Languages public awareness initiative.  That campaign was launched one year ago to rally support for language education among the general public and to energize those in the profession to renew their efforts to promote language learning at the local level. 

For the first time, formal standards that can be used to develop curriculum for students learning Modern Standard Arabic have been published.  The 3rd Edition of Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century has been published by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages and includes guidelines for students at all levels studying 10 languages, including Chinese, Classical Languages, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish in addition to the new Arabic standards.  These student standards describe what students should know and be able to do K-16 with specific sample progress indicators for the end of grades 4, 8, 12, and 16.

The U.S. Department of Education today announced guidelines for current college students and high school seniors to apply for new Academic Competitiveness Grants and National SMART Grants for the 2006-07 academic year.  Students who completed rigorous coursework in high school or who are pursuing degrees in math, science and critical foreign languages are eligible for a portion of $790 million in new federal funding for higher education.

Dr. Kathleen M. Riordan of Springfield has been selected to receive the Nelson H. Brooks award for leadership in the foreign language profession by the Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (NECTFL). The honor will be presented to Dr. Riordan on March 31, 2006 during the organization’s annual conference at the Marriott Marquis in New York City.

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