Dear Senator Jones,
I am writing to you today because of the bill that was proposed about African American Vernacular English. After taking a linguistics class I have learned a great deal of information about AAVE and want to explain why you should vote for this bill. I don??™t agree with some parts of the bill, but I believe that you should vote for this bill. The common misconceptions of AAVE are that it is slang, lacks grammar, and is not its own language. AAVE is in fact its own language because it has its own sets of rules that the speakers follow. AAVE is a dialect of the English language that is spoken throughout the country. A lot of people think that AAVE is incorrect English, but in fact it is its own language that follows its own rules and grammar. From what I have learned from my linguistics class I am here today to persuade you to vote against the Bill. The Bill ???would require the State Department of Education to immediately terminate the Proficiency in Standard English for Speakers of African American Vernacular English(AAVE) program, which is encouraging the teaching of ???ebonics??? or street slang in our schools. What the bill doesn??™t understand is that AAVE is not street slang it??™s a dialect of English. AAVE is not more accurate than Standard English and that??™s why I believe that you should vote against this bill. For the sake of these children there needs to be a system for them to decode mainstream English.
Senator Jones there is many misconceptions in this bill that I would like to discuss. Firstly the bill claims it is needed, would require the State Department of Education to immediately terminate the Proficiency in Standard English for Speakers of African American Vernacular English (AAVE) program, which is encouraging the teaching of ???ebonics??? or street slang in our schools. Many people have negative feelings about AAVE because its grammar is different than Standard English. Even though it may be different, these speakers are in fact following rules and patterns. For example, words in Standard English that end in ???th??? are pronounced with an ???f??? sound. In Standard English one would say ???bath??? and in AAVE one would say ???Baf???. Another pattern is in Standard English a word that starts with ???str??? would be pronounced in AAVE as ???skr.??? ???Street??? vs. ???Skreet??? and ???strong??? vs ???Skrong???. In fact AAVE speakers are following rules, which makes it a dialect of English. It is not ???bad grammar??? or ???street slang.???
The problem with this bill is that these children will not advance in their learning??™s if they are just taught Standard English and their dialect is ignored. These speakers have problems decoding English words, but there can be a way to help with this structural interface when teachers use different strategies. Just teaching them Standard English is not a way to help them learn that is why I believe you should not vote for this Bill. These children need a special teaching method not just being taught Standard English.
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