Illegal immigration and education

American educational progress has entered into a period of free fall over the past decade. Compared to the rest of the world, America is loosing ground economically because we are loosing ground educationally. America’s social experiments in the arena of education have produced a generation of graduates with less competitive educational skills, leaving them vulnerable to defeat in the swiftly evolving global marketplace. With the passage of the President Bush’s No Child will be Left Behind act,  the demand for measured performance in school had reached a new high.

The national standards for educational progress have been steadily dropping for a number of decades, and although the United States spends more per child on education than most of western world, the measured performance of our students on standardized achievement tests is far behind many of our neighbouring countries. In his introduction to the “No Child” act, President Bush quotes Thomas Jefferson as saying “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be. "

Applying this argument and the status of the nation’s current educational system to the illegal immigration problem, the influx of Hispanic children is pushing out educational system to a breaking point. Imagine a classroom in which half the students speak one language and half speak the other. Communicating lessons and then verifying that the students understand the materials has just become doubly difficult. Now, in the same classroom 50 years ago, an unspoken expectation would be that the non-English speaking students would be, and would want to learn English.

They understood that having mastery of the English language was an important aspect of attaining a good education and a good paying career. This expectation was reinforced to the student by the standards in the home. In that same classroom today, however, the bi-lingual environment carries no expectation of evolving. The Hispanic population, operating in their own sub-culture, carried no expectation of learning the English language beyond that they need to survive. In the home, parents who immigrated illegally, also remain in their Hispanic culture and language.

Thus, the student is caught in a vortex. They create difficulty in the educational environment, they do not learn the new language because they are not universally encouraged to do so, and as a result, education suffers, along with their future potential for economic success. The presence of a two culture America is creating an additional drain on the educational system. Schools must either meet the bi-lingual needs, and absorb the costs, or risk failing the No Child standards and thus loose funding.

The final result is that in an environment which illegal immigration is allows continuing unchecked, educational system and educational quality in our nation will continue to fall rather than recover. Thus this situation is a threat to the entire future of the nation. Illegal immigration and social services According to the LA Times, 5% of America’s work force is illegal or undocumented workers. These workers, however, are eligible for a full array of social and medical services when they are in need.

No hospital in the country will turn away an emergency patient. They will treat the person. And the costs for that treatment, well, when the treated worker is not paying into the system via taxes, their costs are passes along to the rest of the country. This may seem like a small thing, yet another industry in our action which is under elevated economic strain is the health care delivery system. Currently the nation’s health care system is in need of a doctor itself.

Increasing amount of demands with decreasing funding is leaving health care providers in a difficult position. Costs are rising. The baby boom generation, the largest sector of American population is aging and requiring more medical assistance. And the succeeding generations are begin straddled with the financial responsibility to support every widening social medical programs. The money needed for these programs is pushing the entire industry to a breaking bpo0int. Adding to those 11 million illegal immigrants and one can understand the magnitude of the problem.

Illegal immigration is just what the label implies – illegal. A nation that has made the decision to support those who are supporting it, i. e. : tax paying citizens, cannot support an ever growing population of no-tax paying citizens. While the mantra bantered about declares that these people only do jobs that American’s won’t, America should consider if it wants to be a nation that continues to build it’s success on the backs of slaves, if the only change is the slaves nationality.

American is a home of opportunity, based on hard work, and market driven forces. Illegal immigrants want the opportunity without participating in supporting the foundations of our economy. The growing numbers of their community threatens to tip the balance of our entire economic system. It is time for politicians to think beyond their success in the next election, and make hard decisions regarding the future or our great nation.

Works Cited

  • Bush, G. (2001) No Child Left Behind. The White House: News and Policies. Retrieved from: