The Impact of Leaving a Strand Dual Immersion Program on Elementary Students

Extensive research has been conducted on dual immersion programs and their benefits; however, few studies have examined the impact that the dissolution of these specialized programs has on students. The participants of this study were part of a strand model dual immersion program that had been in place at their school site since the beginning of their academic career. Interviews were conducted with the students who were in the program, their parents, and the current teachers. The interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed, and coded for commonalities, and from the commonalities, themes were derived. The students were affected by the dissolution of the program, both socially and academically. Four themes that were derived from the data were: isolation, social uncertainty, academic changes, and accustomed to site. Recommendations were made to help the students deal with their feelings of isolation and social uncertainty such as having them join social groups or afterschool clubs. The students also noticed a change in their academics; they had been accustomed to learning math, science, and social studies in Spanish. From the interviews, the students are currently struggling in math and they feel themselves to be behind their classmates. Recommendations were made for small group instruction, strategic partners, word walls, and frontloading academic vocabulary to help those students who are facing academic challenges. This case study highlights essential data that can be used in future studies for stakeholders who are considering dissolving a specialized program at a school site.