Puerto Rico Language Policy Timeline

  • Dr. John Eaton establishes that the teachers of Puerto Rico should learn English.

  • Period: to

    The educative policy is that Spanish be conserved and English be acquired.

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    The use of English in the schools increases with the idea of converting it into the official language in the schools of Puerto Rico.

  • Period: to

    Spanish is suppressed.

  • The use of Spanish is introduced in First Grade for some classes, like Health and Reading.

  • The project of the law is presented to make Spanish compulsory like a means of teaching.

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    It is established that Spanish be the vehicle of teaching in grades First through Fourth; and English will be used in half of the classses for Fifth grade and Spanish for the other half.

  • The linguistic controversy continues with politic nuance.

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    Enfasis is put on the use of English.

  • Dr. Jose Padin was the first to exhibit English as a foreign language from a pedological point of view.

  • Jose M. Gallardo tried to implement a bilingual program but the many public protests didn't permit it.

  • Spanish prevails again until Sixth Grade and English continues to be a subject.

  • The vernacular is used as a vehicle of teaching until Ninth Grade.

  • Dr. Mariano Villaronga put an end to the prolonged debate of bilingualism decreeing the vernacular teaching in all the grades of the public schools starting from the school year 1949-1950.

  • In the United States, the Bilingual Education Law is signed by President Johnson.

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    Bilingual projects are implemented in Puerto Rico under the government of Popular Democratic Party in the schools Padre Rufo and Papa Juan XXIII.

  • Bilingual Education makes a boom in the United States.

  • The Bilingual Education program is no longer a "program" and the "projects" are transferred to the English Department.

  • Bilingual Education programs are autonomous again.

  • Governor Fortuño implements a bilingual program called BEC-21 in various schools of Puerto Rico.