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How immigrants change school systems

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How immigrants change school systems

A Stanford sociologist explores how communities respond to demographic shifts brought forward by immigration.

Immigrant communities can have profound impacts on a city’s public school system and the way certain subjects are taught. “The traditional view of assimilation is that immigrants land in a place and over time and across generations, they change and become more like the host society,” says Tomás Jiménez, an associate professor of sociology at Stanford and the author of The Other Side of Assimilation: How Immigrants are Changing American Life. “But there hasn’t been a way of understanding what that change means for the people who’ve been here for a long time, for people who don’t trace their family roots to the most recent wave of immigrants.”

On this episode of School’s In, Jiménez talks to Stanford Graduate School of Education Dean Dan Schwartz and Senior Lecturer Denise Pope about his research on immigrants, particularly as it relates to education in the United States. One area of his research centered on schools in Cupertino, Calif., and surrounding areas, which is home to a highly educated immigrant community. He describes how changing demographics impacted the local schools and flipped racial categories on their head.

You can listen to School’s In on SiriusXM Insight channel 121, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and Soundcloud.

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