Louise Radloff on gwinnett county public schools’ district 5:
Gwinnett County Public School (GCPS), district five, is rich with culturally diverse children who represent multitudes of cultural heritages, and who speak one hundred languages in its schools each day. We are raising and educating the truest children of our future. Though our district is blessed with such diversity, that richness also presents challenges because many cultural traditions in our students’ lives do not place a priority on education and English is not the language of the home. Consequently, and all too frequently, public perception of the district and its schools, negatively affects the challenges our students face. District Five has the highest concentration of any district in the county:
- where 100 languages are spoken.
- whose population is 1. highly culturally diverse, 2. highly mobile, 3. primarily non-English speaking, and 4. most people are first or second generation American residents
- where so many are economically disadvantaged and
- where most schools have an average of 90%, and some schools have up-to a 97%, free-and-reduced lunch rate, based on guidelines set by the federal government.