Posted: Jun 19, 2012 5:24 PM by Jenise Fernandez
Updated: Jun 19, 2012 5:34 PM
Using his veto power, Governor Jindal has cut $100,000 from the Council for the Development of French in Louisiana, also known as CODOFIL. This 40 percent slash to the budget could affect French Immersion.
Heba Elseginy's three kids are in French Immersiona at Praire Elementary. Since they started, she's noticed their grades in all subjects have improved. Elseginy's kids also speak Arabic and she believes knowing three languages will help them in the future.
"It makes the kids more internationally aware it makes them more open-minded. Once you learn a language your mind expands," she said.
Elseginy hopes budget cuts won't affect French Immersion.
"I'm staying in Lafayette because of French Immersion. This is the reason many people want to stay here. We couldn't ask for anything better than this," she added.
"The French Immersion is the first step to the creation of a much larger impact of French in Louisiana," said Joseph Dunn, Executive Director of CODOFIL.
Dunn says the budget now stands at $152,000. He says the cut would hinder CODOFIL's ability to recruit and train teachers for French Immersion, which he says is essential to preserving the French culture.
"We have teachers who are trained and making their living here and contributing to the tax base," said Dunn.
Dunn worries a 40 percent cut can also impact tourism..
"There are people that come from other places that come specifically to experience Louisiana culture. In the short term , this will hurt us," he added.