The world language profession has witnessed a growth in the Heritage Language (HL) subfield, giving way to various facets such as its own resource center (the National Heritage Language Resource Center -NHLRC), conferences (e.g., the “Symposium on Spanish as a Heritage Language”; “International Conference on Heritage/Community Languages”), coalitions (“Coalition of Community-Based Heritage Language Schools”), professional developments and workshops, its own journal (e.g., The Heritage Language Journal), and countless published articles
However, despite considerable support in the academic community, there still exists a paucity of adequate information, training, and resources for both teachers of heritage language speakers, and the learners themselves. As a result of the amount of exposure, education, and total immersion in the majority language (in the case of United States, English), most heritage language speakers retain their heritage language for the sole purpose of communicating with their families and in their communities. The absence of opportunities for formal education in their heritage language, as well as lack of empowerment and support contribute to the abandonment of the continuation of learning their heritage language (Beaudrie & Fairclough, 2012; Montrul, 2022; Valdés, 2000). As such, assimilation to the majority language country’s culture (in this case, United States), frequently leads to language loss in the second and third generations. However, with adequate resources and support, many heritage speakers are able to develop their English language skills and continue to develop their proficiency in their heritage language (Zamora, 2013).