The Coral Way Bilingual Program: Florida s Contributions to America s Multilingual History Date: February 19, 2020 Speakers: Judith C. Russell, Dean of University Libraries Barbara Mennel, Director, Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere Thomasenia Adams, Professor and Associate Dean for the College of Education Maria Coady, Associate Professor of ESOL and Bilingual Education Bess de Farber, University Libraries Grants Manager and Coral Way Alumna Orestes Gonzelez, Coral Way Alumnus Britta ny Kester, Education Librarian Russell: Hi, how are you? Welcome. I'm Judy Russell. I'm the Dean of University Libraries and I'm delighted that you're all here this afternoon for this program. I want to share a few logistics with you before I do the rest of the introductions. Most of you have probably been in this room and in this building multiple times. But if you haven't, and you need to get up and use the restrooms, if you go out these doors through the glass doors on the far side of the lobby, do wn through the Panama Canal Gallery to the far end of the building. There's women's rooms straight ahead, and you jog, a little bit to the left and through another set of glass doors and there are men's rooms e there. So feel free, if you need to get up and go down the hall to know where they are. But we really are delighted that you're here and it's wonderful to be able to have programs like this here in the library. Today we're presenting an author's talk abo ut a project that the libraries have been very much engaged in,
publicly funded bilingual program in the country if you can imagine that, the first bilingual program in the United States: Coral W ay Elementary School in Miami. The Coral Way Bilingual Program Project was originated by the libraries. We have something we call S trategic O pportunity G rants where we set aside a small amount of money that library faculty can apply for to do a project that's a particular interest to them. And they applied for and received a grant f or Brittany Kester, project team to cooperate with the libraries at the Univers ity of Arizona and Dr. Maria Coady at the UF College of Education. So the goal of the Strategic Opportunity Grant was to expand the Coral Way Bilingual Elementary School Digital Collection. The collection had previously been at the University of Arizon a, and I'm sure they'll tell you why and how it ended up there. But they have transferred it to us, which does seem a more appropriate home for a whole lot of reasons and one of the things that we like to do and are able to do is to digitize collections like this, so use the tangible copies. So the people at the University of Arizona will still have access through the digital collection, but the artifacts, the hard copies are here and the digital collections are now on our platform. So the team has completed its objectives and added newly donated materials and oral histories to the collection and to promote the collections through social media and through an online exhibit. So we're really pleased to
have them be able to share with you information about the collection and about the project. So it can now allow students, faculty, educators, re searchers and the general public, direct access to primary source material that was previously unavailable, unless you visited the University of Arizona and you had to know it was there. So the project was extended in order to support this presentation and I want to introduce to you my friend, colleague, and frequent collaborator, Barbara Mennel, the Director of the Center for Humanities and the Public Sphere. The Center also joined us in supporting this project. And so she's also going to give you some wel coming remarks. I unfortunately have another commitment at about five o'clock, so you'll see me sneak out, but it is not a reflection on the quality of the program, so. But welcome all of you, and I hope you enjoy the program. Barbara. Mennel: So thank you, Judy, and it is a pleasure to be here. Thank you everybody for coming. Yes. Judy is right, we collaborate regularly with the library. So we're in this room very often, and it actually really is our second home and that's part of the collaboration wi th the libraries. So, it's a great pleasure to see this program come to fruition and the deadline for this year's Public Humanities Grant for the Statement of Intent has just passed, that means that this has really been a work of a year that has come to an end now, by Maria Coady and also Bess de Farber. So the program it's our C Humanities. And for those of you who are interested, you should know that
these are programs in general, where faculty, staff and g raduate students at UF can collaborate with the public on a program and Alexandra Cenatus who's the Assistant Director for Programming and Public Engagement in the Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere oversees these programs. So if you're intere sted, you should feel free to have a conversation with her at any time. But today we're here to learn about the project by Dr. Coady that received the $3,000 for the project titled, Revealing a Hidden History: The Coral Way Elementary School Bilingual Expe riment From 1961 to 1968. The grant supported the dissemination of information to tell the unknown story of the origins of the country's first public bilingual two way school, Coral Way Elementary the project team partnered with the Shenandoah Public Libra ry and the Coral Way Elementary administrators to present an author's talk by Dr. Coady and also a Libraries Grants Manager. Over 100 participants have attended the two programs learning the story of Coral Way and the context of Dade County in the early 1960s as a result of Cuban migration to the U.S. and community members so that they could, for the first time, hold the history of the special school in their hands. Now when this grant was awarded, it was actually our advisory board that selected the awards that suggested that the team come back to UF and present about their journey
and their experience at UF, so that the UF community could also learn about this. The history is now organized and broadly available in the Digital Collection and can be also found in Dr Coady's book. And now I'll introduce Asso ciate Dean Thomasina Adams of the College of Education, who will welcome a special guest and introduce Dr. Coady. Adams: If she didn't raise it up. I was gonna squat down. Thank you, Judy and Barbara. Interdisciplinary efforts across various areas of th e University are increasingly significant in education. It is something that we rely on: the working with others. The scholarship and collaboration on the Coral Way Elementary Dual Language School Program illuminates two main points. First, education is a complex endeavor and is situated in social, historical, and cultural contexts. Second, it is a great achievement when we can look at such long term outcomes in educational programs. It is through such efforts, the knowledge surrounding the cultural aspects of Florida, and across the US, this becomes essential to America's diverse language history. Florida has a key role to play on the national stage and UF is proud to be home of this historical research . Dr. Coady has continued the important work started in 2017 by the late emeritus professor, Dr. Richard Ruiz at the University of Arizona and Bess de project to make its home at the University of Florida. Dr. Coady's work
unravels the s tories of formal bilingual teachers, leaders and staff and is timely and critical to the work that is going on today. The team added eight additional oral histories, with more to come, and unearth a plethora of materials, including the sole source of stude nt achievement data, one dissertation by Dr. Mabel Wilson Richardson in 1968 on the successful outcomes of students. Dr. Coady also identified and connected with the Rockefeller Dimes Collection, which holds the Ford Foundation archives. You will hear more about their roles in this presentation. Those gems in addition to others described today are precisely why we are excited to be present for the release of Dr. Coady's book, The Coral Way Bilingual Program. Dr. Coady, on behalf of the College of Education , the students, the faculty, the staff and other stakeholders, we are proud of you and we congratulate you. We are confident that your book is going to be a beacon of light, a beacon of hope in the field of bilingual education. Congratulations. Coady: Thank you so much. Can everybody hear me okay? I don't need the mic. So it's really a great, a great pleasure to be here and see so many friendly faces in the audience, and I'm very happy for this moment to be here at the University of Florida and really follow through on the wishes of Dr. Richard Ruiz, who was an inspiration to us all in bilingual education. I'd also like to say though, before getting started, thank you to the Center for Latin American Studies. They also provided a bit of funding for me t o
travel to Miami and collect some additional data down with teachers and educational leaders today. So what I'd like to do today is to share with you the story of Coral Way Elementary School, when it was Coral Way Elementary School, starting before 1963 w hen it became a bilingual program, and bring you through an arc of events that happened and that tell a very big, rich and long story about education, not only in Florida but education in the United States. And exactly that, it's really rare for us as scho lars and educators to see the outcomes longitudinal outcomes from tremendous efforts of our work. So I hope today brings and paints us a long picture, long term picture and backwards looking picture of where we have come from in bilingual education in Florida, and where we have yet to go. Okay, so we thought we'd get started here and see if you could check your history and knowledge of Coral Way. There might be a few people in the room that have read some of the book, but there are four questions I'd li ke to ask. So the first one is: Coral Way opened its doors as the first dual language two good. The next question: the foundation that provided financial support was? Gates , Kellogg, Ford All right, University of Miami. Right! Ford Foundation. So far so good. Okay. The third one. Ford Foundation contributed in 1962 dollars, 128, 278, 398 or $598,000? Couple of guesses there. The correct answer is B, 278,000, which is about 2.1 million tod ay.
And number four, the teaching assistants at Coral Way were referred to as bilingual aids, Cuban aids, teacher aids, or paraprofessionals? I heard B! If you said B, Cuban aids, you're correct. Something we would never say in education today, is to call a group of people by their ethnic origin. Okay. So in this slide, I just wanted to introduce you, and provide some brief imagery of Coral Way Elementary School. If you haven't been there before and except for maybe three or four people in this room, you probably haven't been there Coral Way was actually created as a building in a medieval revivalist style, and the atmosphere of Coral Way as an elementary school, really comes through in that sense of South Florida with palm trees and the sort of outdoo r atmosphere. In the middle of the school on the left side of the screen, you can actually see the old fountain that wasn't there in 1963, but was subsequently added to the center of the courtyard. And so this is sort of the style and the spirit of the sch ool and it also history. What you see on the right side is an older picture of Coral Way today, you would see 2004, the school became a K 8 Center, it expanded to grade 7 and grade 8. Okay, so the story of Coral Way from my perspective actually
doesn't begin in 1961, it begins in 1997 and that's an interesting year . I student in Boston, but it was really in 1997 that I was selected to be a Title VII Fellow. Title VII in education was part of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. It no longer exists today, but in 1997, it was pretty robust. The 1997 the 1968 ESCA was also called the Bilingual Education Act, that was passed into Congress in January of 1968. So Title VII of ESCA and Bilingual Education Act are synonymous. This act paved the w ay for the preparation of teachers, educational leaders, scholars in the field of bilingual education. And so in 1997, the University of Colorado in Boulder received a large grant from the US Department of Education and they prepared many of us as scholars to become bilingual educators and to become bilingual teacher educators. So when I first heard of Coral Way Elementary School, was really at the graces of Dr. Kathy Escamilla, who is my faculty advisor at the University of Colorado in Boulder. We work ed t ogether in a transitional bilingual education program in Denver, which later has shifted into another kind of program. But really, Coral Way, even then, was known as the real head and the real grandfather if you would, of the whole bilingual education move ment. The other note here is that in 1974, the Bilingual Education Act was changed and relocated to an office called OBEMLA. Some people in this room might remember OBEMLA. It was the Office of Bilingual Education and Language Minority Achievement. And so,
OBEMLA does also no longer exist in the United States. Today in our country, we have an office for language acquisition called the, the Office of English Language Acquisition, OELA. So you can see already through the years that bilingual education in our country started with a very rich history and passed on over the years into different kinds of shades of a nuanced meaning surrounding what a bilingual education program is and how we prepare educators. So, the origin of this experiment, Coral Way, however, really begins before 1961 when the book takes place. It begins really in 1959 and many of you that are historians know that 1959 was a key year, which started the Cuban refugee crisis with Fidel Castro, on the Cuban Island, in South Florida, people coming from South Florida. In the mid 1950s, South Florida and Havana in Cuba had very strong relations, but with Castro coming into power in 1959 that was disrupted rapidly. And so the United States experienced a lot of refugees that came to the Florida shores. We probably know this coming from Florida but it's a small part of overall American history. The Cuban people left a tremendous landmark on our state's culture and continue to do so in the fabric of Florida. But in the particular years of 1960 and 61, we had a situation or situation and operation called Pedro Pan, Operation Peter Pan. This was an event that happened where over 14,000 Cuban children left the island of Cuba and were brought to the United States, unaccompanied without their parents. So all of those events happening took place in this era of
American fear after World War II, approaching the red tide of Communism coming into the United States. And so it set the scene in South Florida for immigrant refugee children coming to the United States tha t didn't speak English, but a sense of not knowing really what to do. In fact, so much so that Dade County Public Schools had received by early 1961, more than 10,000 children in the school district that didn't speak English. And so there was some sense of urgency and how to address the educational needs of the children in Dade County schools. One of the things that Dade County did do was hire a woman named Dr. Pauline Rojas. She was hired in September of 1961 and the superintendent of schools, Mr. Joe H all told her that she had a main task ahead of her. Right away, she needed to find a solution to what they called the Cuban Crisis , right. A lot of children, thousands of children coming into the school district. Dr. Rojas immediately did one thing. She started what was called an Orientation Program, where she hired people that were trained bilinguals to work with children in the regular classroom. So we see this across the United States today, where we have paraprofessionals that work in classroom settin gs with teachers in order to help children learn English. But Dr. Rojas was also a linguist and she was very well trained in literacy development and she had a lot of friends across the country. She had been hired by the U.S. Center for Applied Linguistic s and understood the way language development worked. So she actually had in her notes, the idea that she really wanted to start a
bilingual program. The problem was, she didn't really have the funding to do that, and that's where she decided in late, in t he fall of 1961, to get on an airplane and fly to Washington DC. When she got to Washington D.C., some of us might remember that in 1961, we did not have a U.S. Department of Education. We had an Office of the United States Health, Welfare, Development, a nd Education. So it was a smaller office and she went to Washington and said to them, we have a crisis in Miami, we need some financial assistance, and you we don't have any money. Yo u know, there's nothing we can do about it. Someone in the Department of Education, though, at the time, told her that what she could do was go to New York and meet with people at the Ford Foundation, where she heard that there might be some money for som e programs. So like any good person would do and a linguist dedicated to the cause, she instead of leaving Washington DC, she actually went to New York and entered the front door of the Ford Foundation building and met with a key person there. Would not l eave until she had her story told. She conveyed the urgency of the problem. That's how she qualified it, as a problem in Miami and how they needed funding in Miami to help the Cuban refugee children and to help the Dade County Public Schools. So there were elaborate notes that were taken in 1961 surrounding the context of Coral Way Elementary School, before it was Coral Way
Elementary School, and the work of Dr. Pauline Rojas who really had a vision for bilingual education in Miami. And I should say right n ow that she did not have a vision that Spanish speaking children would learn English in a bilingual program. She had a vision that English speaking children and Spanish speaking children in Miami would both be educated and both groups would become bilingua l, and this was really the revolutionary difference between prior bilingual education programs across the United States, and really what was happening in Miami, Florida. Through a long series of events that happened back and forth. Several grant proposals, lots of travel between New York Ford Foundation and Miami, Florida and Dr. Rojas and Dr. Hall going back and forth. Eventually in January of 1963, the Ford Foundation agreed to fund Dade County Public Schools with $278,000. Okay. Well, this was very excit ing now, but Ford Foundation was very clear, they did not want to fund a bilingual program. They would fund only two things. One of the things was teacher education, and that was really important because in the early 1960s, there were also growth of Mexica n children in the southwest and other Latinx children across the United States that were needed to have some special support in regular elementary and secondary classrooms. So the Ford Foundation said they would be happy to give Dade County the money. But they needed to create some materials. They needed to provide some reading materials for children for ESL purposes English as a S econd L anguage, purposes. So that was one key thing
that they really wanted from the money. The other thing they said was, th ey wanted the teachers in Miami to think of some innovative teaching methods in order for them to be able to show these methods to other places across the United States. In other words, Miami in this particular context was meant to be an experiment and dev elopment of materials for other people across the United States to use. Okay, so there were actually seven key goals of the Coral Way Bilingual Program at the time. This is just fascinating. Dr. Rojas said Okay, of course, like any good linguist and scho lar would do. We're actually happy to take your money and we're happy to do the things you'd like for us to do with it. But she had in her mind the idea of building this bilingual program. And I call it, you heard in the introduction, a two way immersion program. Today, these programs are considered or called, categorically dual language programs. But there's a lot of nuance surrounding how they function and the composition of the programs. But in this case, it was really Spanish speaking children and Eng lish speaking children being together in the same program and having the same curriculum twice a day. Once through the medium of English and some adjustments, and once through the medium of Spanish. So two languages of instruction. The interesting thing ab out Coral Way were the seven original goals of the program. You can see them up here. I highlighted the first two for you in blue, and you see one of the goals was the pupil having achieved as much
in the way of skills, abilities, and understandings as he would have had he attended a monolingual school, so that was clearly a language learning goal. The second goal also was very much a language learning goal. It was proficiency in a second language and as much proficiency as he would have in his first langu age. And remember, 1961 we didn't have any research or any data to say children could learn through two languages, without loss to the first language, we just didn't have that body of research. So this was very revolutionary at the time. But I really want you to focus on the other five goals below that, because this is fascinating to me as well. Of all the seven goals of Coral Way, five of them had nothing to do, or little to do with language, even though this was the first bilingual, dual language program in the country. They were thinking of they meaning the educators and Dr. Rojas were thinking of things like culture, operating across culture. Thinking of things like objectivity and thinking, and look down: being more accepti ve of strange people and cultures, and increase the range of his job opportunities. Right. Some of us anti neoliberals would probably cringe at that idea. But, then we have things like vocational potential and finally in understanding of people and the world. So clearly the found ers and led by Dr. Rojas, were not really just thinking about bilingualism and biliteracy in 1961, 62, and 63. They were thinking of the way this program would have a long term effect on the lives of hundreds and thousands of children. And that, to me, was very forward and progressive thinking on the part of the
founders of the program. Okay, so I just wanted to mention a few more things before we shift gears a little bit and have some other speakers come up. This is a period of time between January and Ju ne of 1963, a lot had to happen in order for the school to open its doors on September 3rd of 1963. So funding was received in January, but that left only six or seven months or so to identify the school which school was going to take this group of chil dren, Spanish speakers and English speakers in the same environment? Secondly, how do we prepare teachers that quickly, for two languages of instruction? Third, where do we get the curriculum from? Fourth, how do we prepare people for a new environment? Fi fth, how do we get buy in from families, especially monolingual English speaking families. There was a tremendous amount of work that happened between January and June of 1963. And again, the Ford Foundation funding was really started the way for that. And what you see on the screen, the image on the left hand side is a snapshot of a series of readers that were created by the early teachers of the program. This is a series of basal readers that we probably wouldn't use today in education, but were quite forward thinking at the time in 1961. There's a picture of something called there was a lot of drill of language among t he students that you might hear more about later today. But these teachers were provided these materials and created these materials to use in the classroom for second language acquisition purposes. In particular this series is called the Miami Linguistic
Readers, and it was part of the ESL materials that the Ford Foundation funded. The interesting image also is the one on the right hand side. Out of all of the Miami Linguistic Readers that we found, we found only one that had Spanish in it. And this is a p icture of it here. And what you see in this image, is the traditional Mexican song, ironically, right, Aye, Aye, Aye, Aye. You know, and so this was a story about a boy who was a Mexican migrant worker boy who ended up buying a bicycle. So it's fascinating the way culture was perceived, understood, and in some cases reified through these materials that children were using in Miami in 1963. I think we have a little audio clip. In terms of the teacher professional development, there were some tremendous teach ers that came from Cuba that were very dedicated to the bilingual program, and I'd like to share with you a very short clip from Dr. Josefina Sanchez Pando. Dr. Sanchez was born in Cuba in Havana and came to the United States in the early 1960s. She had a doctorate degree from the University of Havana, as did some other teachers that eventually became teachers in the Coral Way program. And so when the teachers, when they were prepared as doctors in Havana that were language professors came to the United Sta tes. They could not bring their credentials with them. So they had to go through an elaborate teacher education program. They had PhDs. They understood language. They were bilingual. They were biliterate. But they didn't have a credential. So they had to g o back to
school to get a teaching credential in English. And then they also, many of them went back to school and did master's degrees on top of that as well. So this was a highly educated group of professionals that started and worked with the bilingual program and she was Dr. Sanchez was a tremendously committed educator to the children of Coral Way, and I think you can hear her speaking about that. [AUDIO CLIP of Josefina Sanchez Pando]: At that time, before the bilingual project started and it started only in Coral Way and believe me, that was a hard delivery! You really had to push to get that going. There were rooms in which a Cuban teacher, e And I tell you this because I belonged to the first group, and we were called the Marines at the university. Coady: And they did. They opened a massive whole space for other people to come behind them. So, the question before us really in the presentation is really quite simple : d id it work? We wonder in bilingual education, especially in the 1960s, if we were to take children from Spanish speaking homes in this case and children from English speaking homes and put them in the same program and provide them instructi on, academic instruction t hrough the medium of English and the medium of Spanish, would it make a difference? That was the question
before them. Is this going to work? And a simple question, but really a lot of unknowns in the 1960s. The model, a lot of p eople ask about the model of the bilingual program because there are various models, if you would, across the United States. And what happened in Coral Way in 1963 was, they decided that they would allow three grades of children to enter the program. The t wo way bilingual program at the same time. Grades 1, Grades 2, and Grades 3. So the first year when it opened, three grades of children came in. In order to get there, though, the educators had to think about a balance between the students, so they had 50 percent native English speakers and 50 percent native Spanish speakers and that's really important in a bilingual program because, of the way languages interact, the way there's language status associated with languages, the way speakers of those languages are perceived, and how languages are used in the curriculum. So there was a lot of thought, again, put into the way that design would take place. But one thing is really interesting from 1963, is they did not put, usually, groups of students from differe nt backgrounds together. In other words, the native English speaking children, whatever that group was, stayed together in the morning and had their instruction through the medium of English , which they referred to as the Vernacular here. They had a lunch break in the middle and in the afternoons, students went and had their instruction through the medium of in Spanish.
For the Spanish dominant children, it was the reverse. They had their language arts program and instruction t hrough the medium of Spanish, they had a lunch break, and then they had instruction t hrough the medium of English in the afternoon. Now the middle of the day is a very interesting time because the educators did not structure the middle of the day for the children. They call this in the archives they call this relaxed time. It was relaxed time for the children. But it really played an important role, because during that time, the teachers on the Spanish side of the program and the teachers on the English side of the program had 90 min utes to plan together every single day. That's something really unheard of in education today. We don't give teachers a lot of planning time and certainly not a lot of time to collaborate, which is so essential to bilingual education programs. So you can see a little bit on the right hand side, the model, what that looked like for the grade one students, and we could kind of go deeper into this a little bit after. But you can sort of see a distribution of languages, for the children. And the program didn't start and end the school year the same. The first four weeks there was more vernacular instruction and as students went through the academic year, they had more second language instruction, until they really approached about 50 percent , 50 percent during the school day. The other thing I wanted to show down on the bottom right is actually one of the, she was a Cuban aid that became a teacher. Her
name was Maria Tita Pineiro. What's fascinating about her background is it shows in her credential, she was nom inated for Teacher of the Year in Dade County Public Schools in 2004. She was an educator for 33 years at the school, but you can see on that document that she received her doctorate degree at the University of Havana in 1960, came to the United States, an d then you can see 10 years later, she had to redo her teaching Okay, so I think that's where we wanted to shift gears now, and we have a treat. We want to shift the format and ask if you would please, Orestes Gonzalez to please come up and share his story. Orestes, would you like a seat? Okay. Gonzalez: Hello everybody. That's me. I was wearing my mother's wig. Anyway, would you like to start with some questions? Coady: Sure. We thought we would ask Orest es some questions. Some of you have had the pleasure of having him in your class, an hour ago. So Orestes was in the second grade class in 1963. Gonzalez: That's right. Coady: So he has a long story to tell. I wish we had more time to hear the whole story. But we thought of having you tell us a little bit. If you could tell
us first your name, and the languages you spoke at home. Gonzalez: My name is Orestes Gonzalez, or in Spanish, Orestes Gonzales, and we spoke Spanish at home. My parents didn't speak English. We arrived from Havana in 1960 and during the first two years, or three years of living in Miami, we only spoke English. I learned English basically also through TV and media. There was no Spa nish language TV at the time. So being that I was very young and my mind was very open, I was able to capture the English language rather easily. Coady: So Orestes, how did you end up at Coral Way Elementary School? Gonzalez: It was, it was the luck of the Cuban I say. I mean we, my parents moved to a rental house two blocks away from Coral Way, by pure chance. So I was registered into that school, me and my brother and sister. Coady: Very good. So do you, can you share with us one story or memo ry of your time as a student in the first bilingual program? Gonzalez: To me it was like normal to be in a classroom where they spoke Spanish ,h alf of the day i n Englishthe other half. So there was nothing that made it seem so special to us. But I do
a word in English, I would run back home to my mother as a six year old learned how to say lizard for the first time. So I ran back, we would always catch the lizards in the front yard Engli sh. Coady: Do you remember any of the teachers in particular that made an impression upon you as a child in the school? Gonzalez: Yeah. Josefina Sanchez Pando, the one that you heard, she was a drill sergeant. She was very imposing. She was quite a disciplinarian. What I loved about her was her impeccable way of speaking English. She was really amazing. And I think subconsciously that was imbued to me. I always wanted to speak as perfectly in English as I did in Spanish. And that was something that just stuck with me for the rest of my life. Coady: That's great. So, yeah. So, looking back, so Coral Way, you were there in 1963, started in the second grade, Gonzalez: Right.
Coady: And then did you stay in the school until 1968 and graduate? Gonzalez: I did, yes. As I said, I learned basic English through osmosis being in a neighborhood where English was mostly spoken. So when they started the program, I was actually put into the program with the rest of the native American speakers. Which was to my parents, like winning the lotto, they really thought that was very special. As a matter of fact, there was a certain rift between my mother and her sister in law because they didn't place her son in with the American kids. They placed him with t he Cuban kids and she was really upset about that. But there was a sense of acknowledgement and a sense of achievement rather that they placed me with the rest of the American speaking kids and I think it had to do with the fact that I had a knack of picki ng up the language rather quickly. And a s I said, we were very insulated in that environment , as a child we never felt like second class citizens. We never felt that we were beneath the rest of the mainstream and that gave us a great sense of how should I say? Feeling that we were just like everybody else. Which, I think I owe that to the fact that it was a bilingual education. Yeah. Coady: So looking back at bilingual education or your experience in Coral Way a long time ago, do you have any thoughts about how the program really affected your life and the things that you do today?
Gonzalez: Yeah, I never really thought of it until you guys started putting this great program together, but it just gave me an incredible sense of confidence, you know. Which I think as a young adult is super important. I think that, that confidence to fill out an application for a college, you know, and being able to elaborate in that application, why you want to go to that school. All those things that were done by me, by nobody else and I feel that, that came out of being equally proficient in Spanish and English. Coady: And do you want to share your project and how you've taken your Cuban background and history and what that means to your work today? Gonzalez: Yeah. I spent most of my professional life working as an architect in the preservation departments of large corporate, architecture and design firms in Manhattan. I did 32 brownstone renovations in historic Harlem. I did some in Brooklyn. I currently liv e in a 1890 Queen Anne, Victorian Queen Anne house in the historic district in Long Island City, Queens. So I was I specialized in historic preservation, but being completely bilingual, I also worked in projects where the United Nations was attached to the project. So they would always assign me to work with Latin American clients. That gave me a certain amount of prestige in the company. I was able to, because New York is New York, and you have to be aggressive, I was averaging 25 percent more in pay t han somebody who's not bilingual.
Coady: Wow. Gonzalez: So again, I wasn't giving credit to the Coral Way program, but because I was bilingual, I was getting better paid. And I think that's really important to assess. I think that's incredibly important. And I'm not talking about just being like bilingual in Spanish, you could be bilingual in, as I said before in French , or Creole, or German. You're going to have opportunities out there because of your bilingual background where you're going to be coveted and it's going to be a better boost in your career. And it also opens up your mind as to how you are culturally more prepared with dealing with other cultures. If you actually identify with those two cultures. So after I finished my I decided that I had enough with architecture and clients and stuff, so I went out on my own. But as I was doing that I was always very much in love with photography and I started doing photography as a full time venture since 1998. And one of the things that I lov e to do is that I love to tell stories and I specialize in narratives, and this particular narrative is about my late uncle Julio Santana. He had this little track house in the middle of working class, Little Havana. But when you would enter his house, it would look like that. As I said, it would make So I remember growing up as a child going to these parties that Julio used to, to give with free flowing food and music and really beautiful
people, and I would sit as a nin e year old on the corner, eat my lechon and fall asleep. But as I grew older, since Julio was gay, my parents kind of saw less and less of him. I don't know if it was to protect the children from a bad influence or, but we saw less and less of Julio. And a bout 10 years ago, my aunt, by this time I was living in New York, and my aunt since he was, since I'm a photograph er. So I flew down, I walked into his house and I saw this again and all these incredible memories came out of e and the more she talked, the more I knew about him. He had been a the 50s and he had a magic show. When Castro took over after the revolution, the cruiseline shut down, he was stuck i n Florida. He couldn't go back to Cuba, but he decided to go get a job as a waiter at the Fontainebleau Hotel. And he worked for 20 years as a waiter in one of these big hotels in Miami Beach and she said something was really interesting. now, if it hadn't been for Julio, we wouldn't be here So all of a sudden, the marginalized gay man in my family was the one
that saved my family from communism. So I put this book together called It's been it's in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Duke University, I think we have one here as well. And from there, it turned into [an] exhibit, an exhibit that we put together with a curator from a gallery in Miami, Florida. And last year, we had it at the SF Camera Works Gallery in San Francisco. And now in three days I'm open ing the show in Havana, after 50 years. Coady: Wow. That's amazing. Gonzalez: Thank you. Coady: Thank you, thank you for sharing your story. Gonzalez: All right. Coady: Ye ah, all right. Gonzalez: Thank you for listening.
Coady: g oing to ask Bess de Farber if she'll come up and tell us her story about Coral Way. A lot of story. de Farber: Hi everyone. I know a lot of you, because I'm the Grants Manager here at the libraries and I work with many library employees who are here today. So thank you for being here. Coady: So Bess was also, you can see actually right in front of Orestes, ironically, this was not planned. But in their picture together. This is your second grade picture is that right? de Farber: Right. Coady: Okay and Bess, there you are sitting right in front of Orestes. So, same question. So can you tell us the language, like the languages that you spoke at home, but also how you ended up in the Coral Way program? de Farber: So when I was five, I think my mother, who was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina and didn't speak English, but she was the breadwinner o f being stuck in a car in a rainstorm. The car wasn't working. And she was
screaming at my father that she ne eded to be living in a different place. And he got some money from his sister, who was a nurse who lived in Miami Beach and was able to buy a duplex across the street from Coral Way Elementary School. So we moved there, I was about five and we walked into the duplex, it was fully furnished. It had all of the silverware. It was an estate sale. So my father had purchased everything for $10. And I was just a very strange moment. But my mot her didn't speak English. My father spoke Spanish to my mother, and when they didn't want I have a little brother when they didn't want us to understand what they were saying, they spoke in Yiddish, because my mother was Jewish and also my father was Jewish and they were second cousins. So that was a little bit strange. So we were living in this house. Eventually we learned English, the kids learned English. My father spoke, he came through Ellis Island, so he when he was 11, and he was living in t he Bronx, so he could speak he spoke five languages, essentially. So he learned Spanish because he went to Argentina to visit his family that was there. That's a whole other complicated story. And so, so yeah, there were these three languages happening around me, all the time, and eventually, my mother would always speak Spanish to me, and we would respond in English and my father eventually would speak English to us. Coady: Right, right. So your time in Coral Way, you started in first grade in
a mo nolingual English program, which we'll get to in a bit. And in second grade the program turned into a dual language program. Do you remember, or can you recall a story or something you can share about that time or your time at Coral Way? de Farber: Sure. Maybe we should show the report cards. Coady: Okay. de Farber: So these are my report cards from first grade and second grade. And in the first grade, they actually started conversational Spanish and you can, there is a place it's right here, where it's typed in conversational Spanish on the second half of first grade. I was pretty good at the Spanish because it was my native language. But I was put in with the American English speaking students, who were from different cultures. There were some Gree k students in our neighborhood. There was a very large Greek church, a very well known Greek church, and there was also the largest synagogue south of Atlanta, was there. So there were lots of Jewish students. So I was in this class, they were brutal with us. I think this is my first grade class. I have a D in Science, right. Coady: They were serious educators, right. de Farber: In the comments, I don't know. Can you go to the other? Is that how it's
going to show up, Brittany? Um, so in the other it some of these comments for second grade, talk about that I have to go to the library and check out library books. I was terrified of the library because it meant to me all the things I did not know. And to me, there was some equation that was like, okay, me. So I wasn't a big reader. I loved the music program. I remember we learned all of the military songs in English. And then we learned all of these cultural songs in Spanish like and And the Cuban teachers would teach us all of these wonderful songs in Spanish. I felt very comfortable with Spanish. I felt not so comfortable with Englis h in terms of reading, et cetera. Because all of those students had been speaking English from the beginning, and they also came from professional homes and they had been read to. And so I always felt a little bit discomfort, meaning because I was Jewish a nd because I was Hispanic, I didn't know another Jewish Hispanic kid, my have a sense of belonging. So in the photograph with all of the students that's a second grade photo most of those students had Jewish backgrounds, because our neighborhood was actually a Jewish neighborhood until the Cuban immigrants came and starte d buying properties. So that school was
actually, you know, had this multicultural aspect to it, but I had never felt like I had a home in that, in the culture. I was a little bit of this and a little bit of that, and I think that that's how I felt the ent ire time I was at Coral Way, but I thankfully had Spanish because now I can read and write Spanish and speak Spanish, much better if I stay in Argentina for a few days where I have people my family that I can speak to, because we don't get a lot of practic e here in Gainesville. I had a lot more practice when I was in Miami. Coady: So I know you have other things to say about Dr. Ruiz in just a minute. But I want to ask you, looking back over your trajectory, or your past, and where you've come from? Do you have any memories or any long la sting thoughts about Coral Way E lementary S chool and how it influenced who you are and where you are today? de Farber: Oh, I don't know. I think about this idea of this thing that is important to me, which is asset based community development. This idea that you have to look at what you have, and always value what you have, so that you know what you can do with that, and the fact that I'm bilingual and also that I went to Hebrew school and I learned Hebrew, at the sa me time, we were doing English, Spanish and Hebrew, and a lot of the students that were at the school were also going to Hebrew school. Those are things that are really important in terms of my mental development, I think, and accepting other people for wh o they are. I think many of the things
that Orestes was saying. I don't know that he understands that I didn't feel like I had a place at Coral Way and felt at home there. Because it was just so strange for me. My father stayed home. He was my room mother in fifth grade, my mother went to work. So I was kind of always upside down in terms of trying to compare myself to other students. But I think always And like Orestes, I became a classically traine d clarinetist as an artist and have had a whole career as a professional musician. As well as in grant seeking. So I think that, you know, I'm sure, I wouldn't have been connected to my family now in Argentina had I not been bilingual, once my parents pass ed. So what a wonderful thing that I have that. Coady: Thank you. So I'm going to have you, maybe you'd like to talk a little bit about how this project started, and we're going to move into the 21st century. de Farber: Okay, so in 2007 this is Dr. Richard Ruiz. I heard that there was a famous bilingual e ducator at the University of Arizona. I was working in the libraries as the Grants Manager there. And I wrote to him a little note this means anything to you, a nd you're interested in talking, you can let graduated from Coral Way Elementary? I don't know anyone who
written in the textbooks about bilingual ed. Th at's not how the historians funding and we got money from the College of Ed. and we got money from the libraries. And we made a trip in February 2008, after I had found all of these graduates of Miami High of Coral Way Elementary. And we went to visit them and we did oral histor ies . So we had funding for the equipment for all the oral histories. We gained that day, 14 oral histories. Later, he went to speak to Orestes in New York and we had the teachers who were still alive at the time. So three of the teachers have now passed. But we have their stories a nd the rest were former students, many of whom were Cuban immigrants. So, this is Dr. Ruiz. This was my visit. I'm the one that took the original photos of in 2008. Tita Pineiro, who you've heard a lot about, is here. I met her in her home on Brickell Aven ue and interviewed her and she gave me a portfolio of photographs and memorabilia that her students had put together for her. And the teachers, because she was nominated for Teacher of the Year and I brought that back. So people were giving us these items, these report cards. We went to Coral Way, we interviewed the staff there. I asked them for the file and the history of Coral Way. They gave me a notebook this thick. [gestures]
That's all the information they had. So I borrowed it, went to Kinko's, I made copies. I brought it back. And that's now, all of that content is now in the digital library. So what we did, we took all of the interviews, we transcribed them, we loaded them to a digital collection. By 2008, I was working here at the University of Flo rida. In 2011, met with the College of Education librarians at the time who, soon after left. And it to ok until 2018 for me to meet Maria Coady. And when I met Maria Coady and I told her, who I was, and I told her about this collection p. And then, of course, then we brought in Brittany. So that's the backstory of how this large effort came to be, and then Brittany had to recruit other people to help her in her grant project. So I think that's what we were doing. Kester: okay. So yes, my name is Brittany Kester and I'm one of the Education Librarians here at UF . So I started working here in July of 2019 2018, sorry, 2018 and the first project I was handed was this project. I was very excited about it, excited to get on board. And so we wrote the grant. And we were awarded the Strategic Opportunities Grant money to transfer the collection from the University of Arizona, and at the time we were actually going to share the collection. So we were going to
add new oral hi stories, which Dr. Coady mentioned, as well as some new materials and then we were going to share it. University of Arizona has since decided they're actually going to remove their collection. So now we have all of it here at UF . So, once we got started, w e found that there was a lot of material that the digitizing of it wasn't great, and there were some issues with the files not being searchable. So part of the grant was that we wanted to hire a graduate student to help us. And Pia Molina was an amazing gr aduate student. She's a graduate student in Latin American Studies and she helped us digitize, re digitize a lot of the content from Arizona, as well as a lot of the new things that we received. And then Margarita Vargas Betancourt is our Latin American St udies librarian, Special Collections librarian and she was also so helpful in creating our physical collections. So now we have all of the physical materials here as well, in our special collections. So whether you want to view it online or in person, you can do either. We have them here. So this is what it looks like when you come to the landing page of our Digital Collection. So we have over 100 documents, over 100 photos the thing s that I wanted to make sure to highlight was just some of the different things that we have. So, Bess and Maria mentioned the schedules we have so many daily schedules. You can get a whole picture of what it was like for every grade at Coral Way, multi ple years. So this was for first grade, just for weeks one through four of the school year.
And this is 1964 to 65, so we have all of these schedules and it is an amazing picture into what the day was like at Coral Way. We also have some really from the photo album that Bess mentioned, some really amazing photos, not only of the students in school, but students that went on vacation and sent pictures back to the teachers. So there w as such a connection between the teachers at Coral Way and their students that they wanted to stay connected, even while they were away from school. So this is a student skiing, somewhere not Florida. So obviously, a lot of snow there. So, amazing, amazing things from the, especially from that photo album. One of the other things that during the project, Dr. Coady was able to travel to Paris to interview was she your classmate? Yeah. Bess and was she in that picture? Yeah, she's in the picture. So she did an or al history for us, so now her oral history is in the collection. We also found a letter that her mother wrote to the principal of Coral Way I'm just going to scroll down a little bit responding to a letter that another parent had written to the Miami Herald. Now the parent that wrote to the Miami Herald was upset about the program and wrote on behalf of all of the parents at Coral Way, that they were dissatisfied with the program. But as you can see from this t she did not write it on my,
grade, and we only have the highest praise for the progress she has made in all of he and Spanish and the success she was having in both. And she talks about this as well in her oral history, which is also really amazing. The oral histories are really great. I wish we could have played you more of talks and it comes through in the oral history. The last thing I want to highlight is, I can't remember who mentioned it actually, is the dissertation that we found. So Dr. Coady did a lot of research as she was writing her book. And came upon many things that we added to the collection, and this was one of them. So Dr. Mabel Wilson Richardson while she was a teacher at Coral Way went back to school and wrote her diss ertation on what was happening at her school. And it is the only source of student achievement data that we have for Coral Way. We contacted the University of Miami and I spoke to the archivist there and he was glad to give us permission, because it was no t digitized before this, he gave us permission to digitize it and add it to the collection. So now it's available with the rest of everything in the collection, and for this I definitely want to thank and shout out to Perry Collins, who's our S cholarly C om munications L ibrarian who helped us with all of the copyright issues that came up during this project. We had an amazing team in the libraries, and I wish they could all tell their
stories. So the collection is available and it is the second collection tha t the Education Library has of primary materials. But it's the collection that highlights and focuses on Florida's contribution to bilingual education, and it's all publicly available and you can go and look at it right now. We have a couple more things w e want to add before the grant ends in June. We hope to get a few more oral histories and some more physical materials. But it is a complete collection that you can go and view right now. So, we're just going to bring Dr. Coady back up to give a conclusion of: Did it work, did the program work? Coady: when a school district doesn't have data on students. We wo uld have a hard time dealing with that today. There were data on from students back in the 1960s, obviously from Dade County Public Schools. It was regular that they collected data on student achievement using the SAT test. They had some intelligence test that they regularly gave children in Miami Dade every two or three years. But for this particular project they did use a language proficiency test. So remember the question before us is, did it work and remember those seven goals, did they achieve their go als? I kind of wonder that question. One of the questions was surrounding how proficient the children would be in two languages. So yeah, so language proficiency. So if you look a little bit over to the blue table over here, might
have to go down. Thank yo u. Yep. You can see these are data that are taken directly from Dr. Richardson's dissertation. It's interesting when she wrote the dissertation that she was asked by people from the Center for Applied Linguistics, some of the linguists in this room will kn ow Dr. Charles Ferguson, Richard Gardner, people that later became very influential in American bilingualism and biliteracy and second language reading development overtime. You see, remember I told you that they started the school simultaneously three gra des grades one, grades two and grades three? Well Dr. Richardson had to So she did something we probably wouldn't do today, but she grouped children t ogether. Group A were Spanish speaking children that were in grades 1, 2, 3 for those three years, Group B and Group C. And then she took the English speaking children, and you probably were a little confused, who is in the English speaking group and who i s in the Spanish speaking group that's a whole other story how they identified children. But you can see what she did was found averages for students' language proficiency level in these groups over time. So these are data that are really difficult to unravel for us right now. We don't have standard deviations. We can't really see how these groups are performed and what the individual influences were on their performance. But one thing that we
can say based on her data, that both groups of students continued to gain profici ency in both languages over time. Okay, so we know that. And remember in 1968, we had no knowledge of what would happen. It was quite possible that students would go to school and have half the curriculum in English, and half in Spanish and never perform w ell in English after that, or never perform well enough in Spanish, you know. So really, there were no data to demonstrate that. And that was an important contribution and if we go back up to the prior table, I just wanted to show you that what they propo sed to do in 1963, was the separation of language percentages. The vernacular was allegedly 36 percent of the day and remember that relaxation time, that relaxed time? Well, that happened in the middle of the day. But after four years of the program. You can see that pretty much, it still wasn't 50 percent instruction in one language and 50 percent in the other. Pretty close, all things considered. But they worked very hard to get to that percentage to try and show this model. Okay. Now one thing to note about these numbers again is, you see they say weeks 24 to 36. The academic year was cut up into chunks of time and each chunk of time had slightly more second language introduced into the curriculum. So were things perfect? No. Were they clear like we thi nk today, we talked about 50 50 models in bilingual education? No, it wasn't like that. But were there a lot of starts and stops? Yes. Were they confused about which
children were native English speakers and native Spanish speakers? Yes, they were. They of ten used students' last names to determine their placement. Okay, we would never do that today. Right. I hope not. So anyway, so there were things that we learned about language development from this one school and sadly Dade County, which became Miami Dad e Public Schools, no longer has access to those student achievement data. The only data we really have, academic data, comes from Dr. Richardson's dissertation. But then, what can we say about the long term outcomes? Well, having listened to 22 o ral h isto ries and you having heard Orestes and Bess today, you can probably come to some conclusion about the positive influence of being in a bilingual program and what it had, the influence it had on their lives. We did interview people, one that some of the book, and in some papers. But overwhelmingly, the students that we met, not only learned two languages or ally, but learned to read and write two languages with some deep level of proficiency. But they had very important contributions surrounding the social benefits, the cultural outcomes, the cross cultural communication capabilities that they developed and t hey attribute that directly as a result of this program. So again with what we started. Do we have long term outcomes from successful bilingual programs? Yes, we do. And we have the data and the
story of Coral Way to show that. Okay and then I just wanted to talk very briefly, because we'd love to ask questions, have you ever asked questions or have a conversation and mentioned that a lot of people I came to UF 17 years ago and the first class I taught was a group G rant and they came from all over the state. So I was teaching bilingual teacher 17 years ago. So one of my students who actually eventually did her doctorate degree, kind of went to the State Department of Education and tried to look for data and 17 years ago the data sets were not so easy to use as they are today. And we really couldn't find where bilingual programs were located. And I was talking about these kinds of programs, two way programs, transiti onal programs, any kind of programs. Nobody knew. So many years have kind of gone by and I've grappled with this from Colorado as a Title VII F ellow, coming from Massachusetts, we've had political opportunistic periods, very restrictivist periods in our history on bilingual education, and so this has really been problematic if a state
like Florida, we should know where, if we have, and where our bilingual programs are. So two years ag o, two and a half years ago, I was teaching bilingual education again. Okay, and a very different group of students and I said to the students, I'm going to not necessarily throw away all the a program where we actually find out where all the bilingual programs are in easy class to run, as reflected in the teacher evaluations, but I can positively say that I had stude nts working in small groups and we went to 12 school districts that said they had bilingual education programs. And then the students, many of whom are not native English speakers, made interviews, had interviews with school district personnel and teachers and staff, a t each of these school districts here, to identify where the bilingual education programs are in the state of Florida. This is only two years ago that this happened. So ba sed on the former ELL P lans, we can see 12 school districts and we can see, especially Broward County, we have more than 125 bilingual programs in the state of Florida, most of which are dual language programs like Coral Way, and former programs like, we c all transitional programs are now transitioning out of that model, into this program. Why? Because across the United States, there are more than easily 3,000 dual
language programs. And many, many states have seen the linguistic and academic benefit of the programs to both native English speaking students and other students as well. In other words, the data are quite conclusive. We've read analyses and meta analyses and meta analyses of the meta k now that these programs, when they're done well, all caveats considered, that they have positive outcomes for children. So that leaves us in Florida with a really important problem here. How do we go ahead and build upon the linguistic history that we have and where do we go from here? And I think this is something that we need to grapple with a little bit more, both in terms of the political context that we're in, especially as an advocate for language minoritized students in the state and what we need to do to advocate for those children and for native English speakers in the state that want their children to become bilingual and biliterate. There's no harm to children to become bilingual. In fact, we have research in the field of special education that sh ows that children that go in, that entered bilingual programs with learning disabilities in some way circumnavigate the disability because of the flexibility they gain in the brain as they're working through problems and so on in school. So there are lots of benefits to bilingual programs. And so I just kind of want to leave with this thought, that we have a long history in Florida, 55 years I think we can safely say, we have a lot to be proud of, both of course in terms of the grant, but also in terms of t he contributions
of people that graduated from Coral Way Elementary School. And it's really incumbent upon us to take this work and move forward and see in our communities, how we build these programs, how we how we really affirm people's linguistic resour ces as a state and how we kind of add to the national narrative and counter narrative, the stories that people who speak other languages are not worthy of places. Certainly that's not true. So, I'd like to open it up to questions as well and ask and have a conversation and people have thoughts about any of the speakers. Audience Member: Hi, I just have a question for the speakers. So in those 90 minutes that teachers were able to plan in and you had your lunch and P.E. and whatnot, and it was kind of like the relax time, what was it like in terms of the dynamics amongst students from the English and the Spanish how, I just wanted to know what the interactions were like amongst students when it wasn't organized? Gonzalez: Well, I think, like in any interaction amongst kids when you're stuck in a classroom, in a closed environment you're going to relate to those people around you, much, much easier. So I think in my case, I was more, I was closer to the kids that were in those classrooms than the kids that were outside and playing outside during those 90 minutes. But I think that was just me, maybe other people had different experiences.
de Farber: No, I think that I was closer to the students that I spent most dgeball and we played all of these, we had to do this physical education testing, and we also danced, like the P.E. teacher was Mrs. Schlotzsky, and she would bring records outside and she would teach us the Mexican hat dance and all of these, and we were all dancing together. So we did get to meet them and when we watched films, there was only one film so they would crowd 100 students into one room and that's when you know, you were with the Spanish speaking students at that time. And so over time, by the time we got into sixth grade, they built a special building for us, where all of us could be together. So there were 100 students in each of those classrooms and there were two bathrooms and in that classroom and the teachers had no walls and there were th ree teachers, now two Spanish speaking teachers and one English speaking teacher, and we would rotate from group to group in this very everyone was bilingual. You could, I mean, Maria Fernandez, and all of these kids that we interviewed, Leticia Lopez, Tatiana Moreno, they were all my friends. And they were in sixth grade, and we were all together. So by then, you know, there was no difference between the English speaking students and the Spanish speaking st udents. Audience Member: Can I ask a question about, did Pauline Rojas get any more
funding from the Ford Foundation? Coady: Yeah good question. What happened to Pauline Rojas? Audience Member: done as far as influencing bilingual education? Coady: Yeah, those are good questions. So I'm going to take them in reverse order. The first question was about Ford Foundation and bilingual Ed. So one of the reasons why Ford Foundation hesitated between 1961 and January of 1963 to give Dade County Public Schools the funding, was because they had had so many demands on their funding, they actually decided to retract from providing funding to educatio nal organizations and recreated a new, I guess a branch of funding, where they could optimize a kind of a new orientation to fund educational programs. So they had been giving out separate grants prior to that, they pulled back and then they had larger po ts of money. They had a very specific focus in mind. So I did some research reading about the Ford Foundation itself and how in the 1960s, they reconfigured their own organization. So that was why they paused at some level. And so they continue to fund dif ferent programs across the United States. Mostly, the one in Miami that we're talking about, but several in the Southwest, United States in particular, around Chicano rights, and activism and bilingual education programs that were
more transitional program s and surrounding ESL materials. So, Ford had that as a bigger branch of their work later on. The question about Pauline Rojas is really interesting. She's got more of a story, than we could tell you, but she really was a linguist who married a Puerto Ric an, who, and she lived on the island of Puerto Rico for many years as a teacher, specializing in reading development. So when she was there, she worked with another linguist named Charles Fries, who developed the Fries Reader series for ESL students. So sh e was very well known in the field of linguistics for reading development. She was a more mature scholar by the time Joseph Paul hired her in 1961, so she was sort of ending her career around that time. So she ran I have the last archival pieces from the Ford Foundation. And at that point, she retired, so. And at that point we were really looking many places for obituaries, I hate to say it, but places like that where we might find where she ended up, where she died , you know, if she had anything in her estate that were documents. There are only a few articles that she authored. There were a few additional articles, actually more authored by the Principal of Coral Way Elementary School, Mr. Logan. He was quite a char acter and he loved the spotlight. So he was very happy to go to the TESOL International Convention and be on the, you know, on the main podium and tell the story of Coral Way. So she was, she was older and retired and
that was really the kind of the end of the trail that we learned from her. Yeah. Very interesting, very interesting woman. She was accompanied by two key men in her work, one man's name was Ralph Robinette. She worked with him in Puerto Rico and they were colleagues, so she hired him when she got hired and then she hired another man named Paul Bell. So these three together really formed, one worked on the ground, at Coral Way, that was Paul Bell. Ralph Robinette worked in the teacher education part and was behind all of those Miami L inguistic R eaders, really helping teachers to create materials. He's been described to me as former teachers and as the brilliant, the brilliance behind the program. Someone told me that the whole Bilingual Education Act was what he wrote on the back of a napkin in M iami in 1967. So that's how he's remembered as having influenced educational policy from Miami. And then Pauline Rojas was sort of at the top, making sure that all the pieces fit together in the b ilingual program. Audience Member: The picture we've gott en thus far, I feel like of this school, um, it's very harmonious and I was just kind of looking into, I wanted to ask whether or not there were any oral histories or any throughout your digging, whether or not you found, I don't know, I feel like a bilin gual program could be sort of a space where there could be a lot of cultural conflict, um and I was just like, curious
whether or not any of the oral histories sort of spoke to, I don't know, any sort of conflict of that nature? Coady: Do you mean many cultural conflicts between two groups of students, or? Particularly? Audience Member: Yeah, I could see bullying. Well, given the political climate of that time and even our time, I could see bullying occurring between the Americans and the people from other, you know, the Latino backgrounds. I was just curious about that. Gonzalez: Yeah, what was that? Audience Member: Yeah, social class, things like that. Coady: Yeah social class. I might say a little bit and then I think Orestes and Bess might be able to talk to that. I want to go back to thinking about Dr. Sanchez Pando and the stories that the antepasados told us about the environment, the social environment at the time, which they characterized as very altruistic. In o ther words, like the OperaciÃ³n Pedro Pan. When the kids came over, even though we don't know, I tried contacting Yvonne Conde about how many of the Pedro Pan kids actually went to Coral Way. And I don't know the answer to that question. But the environmen t in that
neighborhood at the time was incredibly altruistic. Some of the bilingual Cuban aids said things like, you know, when someone needed shoes, Joe Some children are coming from Cuba, they need coats, it's cold here this created an environment in that neighborhood. I don't know if it's perfect, but that that's what their recollection was at the time, a sense of altrui sm and remember that the children did not, they were not put together in bilingual classes together. Today we would plan for integrating kids really systematically, so children from two languages are in the same classroom. There was just too much unknown t feeling that comes up. We do have oral histories from people, that one in particular, as I mentioned, but maybe you all want to speak to that sense of social class, difference in culture. de Farber: Hello? There we re two oral histories that we have, where the students struggled. They were both Jewish students, American, English speaking first language and neither one of them had support for learning Spanish in the home. So one of them, Carol Shore Kirk, she in the second grade was receiving F's in Spanish. If you can only understand what that felt like for her, and her parents were not in favor of continuing her education in Spanish and they withdrew her and they moved to Miami Beach. So she finished her schooling in Miami Beach Public Schools. And
then the second one was Stuart Singer who went to Harvard, became a public interest attorney. He won a very large Florida class action suit against the federal government for lack of Medicaid for children. And he told us in no uncertain terms that he didn't understand why he had to learn Spanish as a young child. He was in my classroom. He said he was constantly in the principal's office acting out because he didn't understand the language and, and he did marry , he married a Hispanic woman. And um, h e still claims he has no aptitude in speaking Spanish or any other language. His father spoke five languages, but he didn't have the aptitude for Spanish. But he succeeded quite well. I knew Stuart Singer until our senior year o f Miami High. One of the most brilliant thinkers on the debate team. So he had to have gained something, but he would not acknowledge it. Coady: And it was funny. He did give us his report cards as well and he had the staff scan them and they were amazed at how he did not do so well in the bilingual program, you know. Gonzalez: I didn't experience any bullying or, feeling ostracized by anybody in my school so. It was, as I said, it was a pretty insular environment that we were in. So I didn't s ee the concept of second class citizens until I left Florida and I moved to Texas. But that's, that's part of like being Cuban I think too, you know. There's a sense of like, you know, we could do just
that was reinforced by the fact that we had both languages equally, being learned at the same time. Coady: One more. Audience Member: So you've documented this history. What are your hopes for what this project will be or do? Coady: the things I've found in our field and bilingual education today, is there's a big, you know, significant body of research going on dual language programs and that's a good thing. I'm really happy that young scholars are studying dual language programs and all of the caveats surrounding that. So things like, the gentrification of neighborhoods, as a result of bilingual programs, dual language programs in particular. The limited access and resources now to language minoritized students to bilingual programs and so on. But what really is interesting to me is that we have this long history and because the current research, it's kind of a cutting edge hot topic, you know, I see a lot of j unior scholars happily so, writing and publishing surrounding dual language programs. But there's a lot to learn from the past. I don't know if that's me getting older, it's probably that, but me
getting older and realizing that things that happened in the past need to inform not only where we are, but where we go in the future. And without those stories, the antepasados , the voices of people who came who worked that hard. It wasn't that they just opened the door. It was, I can't even imagine what they did, but they continued to work very, very hard to keep the program alive, continuing into the 1970s, by the way, because the political environment continues to kind of revolve and roll in and out of bilingual programs, where in Miami, they've had to prepare a t the beginning of every academic year for people that would try to close down the bilingual program and say it wasn't working. So this is a program that's still here today. You could still go visit it today, clearly and it's changed. It's adapted over ti me. So I guess two things from my perspective. One is that people, that we understand our history, our as a collective group in the United States that we have this long history of bilingual programs and it's not a bad thing. I think the big narrative is th at, you know, immigrants coming, it's about, you know, we keep hearing these large narratives that just are not true and don't make narrative. This is the narrative that we need t build from it in terms of research for young scholars to also be able to connect what they're doing today but, knowing that there is an academic history to that to go for in the future.
Coady: Kester: Do one more? Coady: One or two questions? Audience Member: I was very interested, you listed the bilingual programs that were currently in Florida. Is there anything that drives all of them or they're led by something, or do they all happen indepe ndently or do they look to Yeah, I guess, I guess, are they separate things, or are they being led by somebody? Coady: eally great question because most of those schools and districts, there are 12 districts on that list, 16 now because charter schools we had to find, the charter schools are not showing up in the state ELL P lans so that's a reporting problem. But it's inte resting because most of those districts don't know about Coral Way. It's just too far in the past. And so we revived about a year and a half ago, the Florida Association for Bilingual Education with the idea of creating a statewide group that can network a nd share resources and also be part of the national affiliate and learn basically to learn about each other because, I mean, it's a big state, but we have digital technologies, it's not that difficult
to do. Umm, for example, there's a charter school at th e Redlands Christian Migrant. It's the Immokalee Community School, is a two way immersion program in Immokalee, there in Collier County. Collier County programs, even though the y have a dual language program. And because they're not listed, they don't know about other dual language programs. Someone in Sarasota last year said we're opening the first charter dual rst one. So the fact we don't even know about each other is problematic, but it's the reason why we started and revitalized the Florida Association for Bilingual as a way for people to network and we need to continue to do that, but with much more force, with much more urgency, I think. Um, for lots of reasons. For lots of funding reasons and probably for lots of political reasons. Um, Florida, you know, Florida can't hide behi fine, but we've never been an English only state. And so again, this is part of the building solidarity and building kind of a movement of counter narrative to what seems to be a monolingual discourse happening across the state. I think we'll get there, but it's going to take more effort and more time.
Kester: Okay. Coady: Okay, thank you. [talking to audience member] You grew up in Dade County and do you have more information on what happened in Dade County? Okay, so we know it's late in overtime. So I just want to thank everybody for being here and so many friends. Thank you so much for the support. If there's anything else, let us know. Kester: So if you got a raffle ticket you have won a signed copy of Dr. Coady's book. So bring your raffle ticket up and you can claim your book and also on the way out, if you want to grab, we have postcards that have the links to the digital collection, as well as the exhibit that Pia and I created that is available in both English and Spanish as well as a blog post that Dr. Coady wrote, so thank you so much everybody for coming. Thank you, Dr. Coady, I think some of your students might have something for you. Transcribed by: Zoom Auto Transcription, February 19, 2020 Audit edited by: Carolina Watlington, April 28, 2020 Final edited by: Brittany Kester, May 6, 2020