Involving Parents in Dual Language Education: Mamas Con Poder

Photo of Teachers from September's Holbrook Language Academy

Xochtil Oseguera is an incredible leader in the dual language community. She serves as the Campaign Director of the Spanish language Program of MomsRising, named MamásConPoder, and is an advocate for the dual language community.

Developed in 2006, MomsRising is an online grassroots organization helping to build a community where businesses and families can thrive; they aim to promote and increase family economic security, as well as decrease the discrimination against mothers and women. The members of MomsRising speak out to improve public policy to change pressing matters to improve the wellbeing of families in America, including immigration policy reform, criminal justice reform, and gun safety.

Oseguera started to volunteer with MomsRising in 2011. Three years later, MomsRising launched MamásConPoder.org in response to their growing demand for a Spanish language community.

Oseguera and her team organize Latina mothers to take action on the issues of importance to their families, including immigration reform, paid family leave, affordable and high-quality childcare, access to healthy food, gun safety, and fair pay for mothers.

The leaders of MomsRising and MamásConPoder will send any stories, messages, and signatures collected to policy-makers and political leaders, be it in the White House, Congress, of business office.

Photo of Teachers from September's Holbrook Language Academy

In addition, Oseguera has managed SpanglishBay social media, as well as helped kickstart Escuela Bilingüe Internacional. She became interested in bilingual education after the birth of her first child. A group of parents and her had sat down to brainstorm about a bilingual school, and from that meeting Escuela Bilingüe Internacional (ebinternacional.org) was formed.

Continue to the next page to learn more about Xochtil Oseguera

Photo of Teachers from September's Holbrook Language Academy

Oseguera believes that the creation of a multilingual world can help individuals better understand people of other backgrounds and have an increased respect for other cultures. This can develop at a young age through bilingual education. According to Oseguera, it is so important for children to learn other languages to be able to not only develop empathy, but also to compete in a global economy.

Additionally, Oseguera hopes that parents will stop being apprehensive about a bilingual education; it has been proven that students in dual language programs do not get behind in their studies.

As a parent, she has seen her children thrive in dual language programs and has noticed that they have become more comfortable in the way they interact with others.

Balancing motherhood and a career can be difficult at times, but Oseguera sets realistic goals and works hard to keep herself balanced. Her biggest piece of advice for other women whom are hoping to have a successful career while being a loving mother is to not strive for perfection and take it one day at a time, while enjoying the little moments.

Sandra Mercuri
Author: Sandra Mercuri

Dr. Mercuri is a nationally and internationally recognized educational consultant in the area of second language acquisition, dual language education, and curriculum integration for biliteracy development. She has over 28 years of experience in teaching in K-12 schools and at the university level in Argentina and the United States. After retiring as a professor from the University of Texas System, she continued to work on research on the development of academic language across the content areas, the use of translanguaging practices for language transfer, and the effect of long-term professional development on dual language, bilingual and ESL teachers’ instructional practices. Dr. Mercuri provides professional development for teachers and administrators as well as for parents. She presents at national and international conferences on issues of second language acquisition and bilingualism, dual language education, translanguaging pedagogy, and ESL strategies. Dr. Mercuri has published articles in the TESOL Quarterly, Talking Points, EJLTS, JMER, TESOL Connections, MEXTESOL, and the NABE journal as well as the Spanish professional journals The Colombian Journal of Bilingual Education: GIST and the Revista Educación y Pedagogía and more than twelve book chapters. Dr. Mercuri is the author of the book titled Supporting Literacy Through Science: The Challenge of Teaching...

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