No one can argue that Glendale Unified’s dual-language academy isn’t a solid success story.
From meager beginnings, the Foreign Language Academy of Glendale has swelled to claim nine campuses and roughly 1,400 students who are taught in English and six optional second languages, with the goal of reaching fluency by the time they graduate.
The program, fed in large part by enthusiastic parents, has also been a boon for Glendale Unified, attracting out-of-district students at a time when enrollment — a key factor in state funding formulas — had been slipping.
But like any good thing, too much, too fast, can turn problematic. How to hire enough bilingual teachers? Teaching materials? Room for classes? Risk of over-extension? If you get too big for your britches, seams will burst.
District officials appear to be ready to put the ice cream back into the freezer and let things digest for a bit before going for another helping. That’s a prudent move, given all the variables to consider, now that the academy has turned into a whole new enterprise.