What therefore [historical forces of emigration] hath joined together, let not [Italian nationals 100 years later] put asunder

Anthony Julian Tamburri (January 24, 2015)
As someone who has been teaching a foreign langauge (Italian) since 1972, I am delighted to see the NYC school system will add or expand 40 dual-language programs: Spanish, Japanese, Hebrew, Chinese, French and Haitian-Creole. I am also intrigued, however, that of the six “official” languages of the city of New York, according to the 2008 mayoral edict (Spanish, Chinese, Russian, Korean, Italian, and French Creole), Italian is not one of the language programs, whereas two non-“official” languages are, Hebrew and Japanese. In 2011, Gov. Cuomo ordered a similar mandate that included Spanish, Chinese, Italian, Russian, French, and French Creole.

Leaving aside for now the argument that might surround the difference in the six languages, I do wonder why Italian is skipped over by New York city, especially since it is one of six “official” / “mandated” languages, on both the city and state level, in which documents and websites are to be translated and interpreters provided.





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