Castro Welcomes HHS Grant to UTSA for Research on Literacy Development in Dual Language Children
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS—Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20), Chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Vice Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and a member of the House Intelligence and Education and Labor Committees, today announces that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) – National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) has awarded $125,454 to the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) for research led by Dr. Becky Huang regarding the development of language and literacy skills among dual language learners.
“San Antonio and Texas remain among the most culturally and historically diverse places in the nation and our educational institutions should be a reflection of that,” said Rep. Castro. “I am pleased to know that the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) has taken steps to research dual language learners with a specific focus on development of language and literacy skills. We must ensure that every child in our nation has equal access to education and equal access to opportunities in life, and I’m proud that UTSA is leading our city and state in this important research.”
Background: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) – National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) has awarded $125,454 to a research project led by Dr. Becky Huang at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) regarding the development of language and literacy skills among dual language learners. The project, titled “The Role of Language in the English Reading Development of Dual Language Learner Children,” will consider the relationship between the development of oral and reading language skills in bilingual elementary school students, and evaluate using measures of oral language abilities to predict literacy outcomes. This research will help further understanding of factors affecting bilingual education. Dr. Becky Huang is an Associate Professor in the Department of Bicultural-Bilingual Studies, within the College of Education and Human Development at UTSA. Dr. Huang's work includes topics such as applied linguistics, psychology, and education and focuses on understanding the factors that influence language and literacy development among dual language students, as well as evaluating methods for assessing bilingual student outcomes.
Congressman Castro has been a longstanding advocate for access to education. Congressman Castro is the founding chair of the Congressional Pre-K Caucus and former Vice Chairman of the Higher Education Committee in the Texas House of Representatives. He created the Trailblazers College Tour, where he personally raised money to send underprivileged students on college visits. In 2010, he founded SA READS, San Antonio’s largest literacy campaign and book drive where over 200,000 books have been distributed to more than 150 schools and shelters.
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