Las Vegas Review Journal: Governor checks in on English language learners September 16th, 2013



A small group of Hispanic kindergartners huddle around their teacher as she demonstrates how to cut on the dotted line.

Entranced, they “Aww” when Kathleen Quigley makes a perfect cut, but they keep glancing at the stranger behind them.

At the back of the room stands Gov. Brian Sandoval.

He’s largely the reason that Quigley won’t be teaching more than 21 students this year or next. Before that, kindergartners had long been split into groups of more than 30 students at Cortez Elementary School.

Sandoval on Friday was at the school, near Tonopah Avenue and Lamb Boulevard, to personally see if this change and others — resulting from his Legislature-approved program to set aside $50 million for special attention to English-learning students – is paying off.

For the first time in Nevada history, money is being provided to schools on top of the usual per-student funding for English-learning students.

“All you have to do is come to a classroom and see the kids, talk to the teachers, to see the benefit,” Sandoval said of the changes in effect for just three weeks. They are already receiving rave reviews from Cortez teachers and the principal. “It’s working.”

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