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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 22, 2006

Schumer Announces Over $156,000 Going To The Washington-Saratoga- Warren Hamilton-Essex Board Of Cooperative Educational Services

Grant Will Be Used To Establish A Language And Culture Resource Center

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced that a $156,452 grant was awarded to Washington- Saratoga-Warren- Hamilton-Essex Board of Cooperative Educational Services (WSWHE BOCES) by the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) under the Foreign Language Assistance Program-Local Education Agency. Federal dollars will be used to establish a Language and Culture Resource Center that will serve the language-learning needs of students throughout 31 districts in these counties.

"This is great news for these the region," Schumer said. "This language center will create many new opportunities for students to learn foreign languages. Foreign language classes help kids understand other cultures and broaden their horizons. Learning a second language will sharpen their communications skills and give them a competitive edge in their future endeavors.”

Federal funds will be used by WSWHE BOCES to create a language culture center to serve the language learning needs of 45,000 students in 31 school districts. The goal of the center will be to increase the language proficiency, language diversity, and cultural awareness of the students by focusing on programs that increase the amount of time spent weekly learning languages and the number of years of sequential language-learning opportunities. It will also aim to offer a greater variety of languages including Mandarin Chinese and help native speakers of languages other than English become literate in their home language through the use of individualized programs supported by technology.

The Foreign Language Assistance Program-Local Education Agency Grant provides federal funding for foreign language instruction in one or more less-commonly taught languages including: Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Russian, and some Indic, Iranian and Turkic languages. The innovative nature of the program, its use of technology, and other similar factors are also considered as part of the competitive application process.

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