Milbridge Elementary School
Problem: There are just two instructors to teach English as a Second Language (ESL) to about 40 Hispanic students at five schools in an eastern Maine school district. Many of their parents are seasonal employees who come to Maine to work in the blueberry fields and don’t speak English.
Solution: Dana Johnson, one of the two ESL teachers, recently received a grant from IBM to participate in a translation program called ¡Tradúcelo Ahora! (Translate It Now). IBM’s software automatically translates e-mail messages and Web pages from English to Spanish and Spanish to English. This means that teachers who don’t speak Spanish will be able to send notes home to parents without waiting for Dana Johnson to do the translation.