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Saturday, July 30, 2005

Latino Children Abroad for the Summer

From the Christian Science Monitor:

While the exact number of students sent abroad is hard to know, anecdotal evidence suggests the practice is widespread, especially for Latino families. For years, upper- to middle-class Hispanics have sent children to relatives in Mexico and the Caribbean to maintain ethnic ties. Now, cheap airfares - and the fact that e-mail provides a way to stay in touch - allow more parents to ship children abroad...

Recent immigrants and second- and third-generation youths who engage in this kind of visit also nurture relationships that might be lost otherwise, says researcher and education specialist Angela Valenzuela of the University of Texas at Austin. "This is one strategy parents pursue in the absence of a multicultural or multilingual experience in school," she says. "[Children] solidify those relationships that are so crucial and break down when language becomes a barrier in one's own family."

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