AALDEF Introduces Toolkit on Language Access for Asian American Community Organizations
The Language Access Toolkit is a manual created by the Asian American Legal
Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), which houses the National Asian American
Education Advocates (NAAEA), to guide community-based youth programs in their
efforts to obtain equal linguistic access to kindergarten through 12th grade
public education. Crafted in collaboration with Asian American education
advocates and youth service providers, the manual addresses the urgent civil
rights violation of schools failing to provide language access to education,
which disengages parents and students alike in the process.
The manual includes a basic introduction to federal and state laws on access to
education, as well as strategies and sample materials to use in community
organizing and advocacy campaigns for improved interpretation and translation
infrastructures. It shows students and community-based organizations how to
tailor their campaigns to their unique environments and specific needs.
Our goal in releasing this manual is to share the expertise and experiences of
NAAEA member organizations with other community organizations interested in
developing language access campaigns. We hope it offers a solid starting point
for other Asian American and immigrant communities fighting full and equitable
access to the public education system.