Academic paper presented at the Society for Applied Anthropology 2013 meeting in Denver, CO.


Puerto Rico’s public schools have had 10 different language models, most lasting less than five years. Change was clearly unsustainable. The most prevalent and sustainable model failed to meet the educational aims of the system: bilingual citizens. The current social diglossia shows that elites in private schooling account for a great part of the bilingual population, which is only 15%. In 2011, the government launched a pilot bilingual education program. In this paper present the findings of a research project that visited school communities in the pilot and delineate a path to sustainable change that improves access to linguistic resources. If you would like to request a copy of the conference paper or the original government report (in Spanish), you can do so by filling out the contact form.