Global California 2030 is an initiative that aims to prepare students with the language skills to participate in the global economy and create a multilingual California.
Research suggests that bilingualism is an asset, pointing to benefits like meeting the demand for a multilingual workforce, economic benefits, and cognitive development. In 2016, Proposition 58 was approved by voters, removing barriers to implementing dual-language programs. Interest from California voters in these programs continued to grow since Proposition 58, which led to the creation of the Global California 2030 initiative. This initiative sets forth numerous goals to ensure a path to a multilingual state. For example, by 2030, Global California aims to enroll 50% of all K-12 students in programs that prepare them to be proficient in at least two languages. Moreover, by 2040, the goal is that 75% of students in K-12 become proficient in at least two languages to obtain a State Seal of Biliteracy. To meet these goals, the initiative also aims to significantly increase the number of bilingual instructors to 2,000 by 2030. Yet, obstacles to achieving the goals of the initiative persist such as the COVID-19 pandemic and teacher shortages. After they were forced to shift their priorities due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2021, schools began to re-visit their plans to expand bilingual programs. For example, EdSource’s article noted that while Los Angeles Unified School District was able to open its first dual immersion program in Japanese in 2021, the launch of a new Filipino dual immersion program in the district would have to be postponed due to the pandemic. In addition, advocates like Californians Together are calling for more investments to grow the bilingual teacher pipeline and address teacher shortages to ensure the goals of Global California can be met. To learn more about Global California 2030, read the California Department of Education’s report here. Read a fact sheet by the California Budget and Policy Center (CBPC) on the importance of supporting bilingualism here.
Photo Credit: California Department of Education