The Instigator
elkay27
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
carles37
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

More foreign languages should be taught/offered in High Schools

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/9/2012 Category: Education
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,558 times Debate No: 26092
Debate Rounds (3)
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elkay27

Pro

Students should be able to learn more than one language in their high schools. After they graduate, businesses will consider them more highly than people that only know one language. Only offering Spanish and French in high school will not enable a student to reach their full potential of learning languages. Learning languages enables students to be able to travel around the world and communicate with the world. Without it, people could be stuck in their country forever, never being able to access the rest of the world. After learning a second language, it becomes easier to learn even more. Students should be able to learn more than just the standard French and Spanish so that they can succeed in their own lives.
carles37

Con

I don't think foreign languages should be as important in high school because in a four year period it is impossible to become fluent in a language without actually living in it's native land. Most high school students will forget the language by the next year. Other countries learn english at a young age so we as Americans can communicate by speaking our own language back to them.
Debate Round No. 1
elkay27

Pro

I understand that many countries already have their students learn English starting from a young age. However, many people in other countries are not fortunate enough to learn English. If you were to go to Panama or another Central American country, many people would not speak English. They live in poverty and cannot even afford to learn basics.

High school students comprehend more than adults because their brains are still growing. Many students do just take high school languages because they need credits. However, many are really interested in the language. Some students actually want to excel in the language of their choosing. If a student does not want to learn Spanish or French, most of the time they are out of luck. Many schools only offer Spanish and French. High Schools need to offer more languages like Latin, German, Russian, and Portuguese.

It's just common sense that a student that knows more languages will most likely get the job they want over the person who does not know any language besides their own.
carles37

Con

However why would Americans need to communicate with the countries in poverty. We are a growing country who wants to keep prospering. Those countries would do no good to us and it is highly unlikely for anyone at a high school standard to want to learn such languages and if they did schools could not afford to offer one language class for five students. Most citizens of the USA will only visit foreign countries not live there, so to spend money on many language classes is a waste. That money could go toward bettering a students reading comprehension and other essential skills for their jobs in the future.
Debate Round No. 2
elkay27

Pro

I understand that not every job in the world requires the person to be bilingual. My point was many students aspire to work in a high paying career, as in Law or Health. Imagine if someone that has only ever been taught Spanish comes into a hospital. If no one in the hospital knows Spanish, what happens to the person? They won't be able to get the patients personal information.

At my high school, we have 2 language classes. Students (like me) that want to have a career that involves languages should be able to have a larger variety of languages to choose from. I am not content with only being able to choose between French or Spanish, and I cannot be the only person unhappy with the language program at their high school.

I never said high schools should offer obscure languages that barely anyone in the world speaks. I believe languages like German, Chinese, Portuguese, and Latin should be offered at all schools. I know cost is a factor, I never said it wasn't. However, the idea of students succeeding in foreign language courses should motivate the school board to raise money for these courses.

And I conclude, more practical foreign languages should be offered in ALL high schools.
carles37

Con

carles37 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
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