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Abstract

College admission is contingent upon students’ high school performances, especially mathematics proficiency that is crucial in qualifying for the projected science, technology, engineering, and mathematics professions of the future. This paper reviews some concerns that hinder the efforts of English language learners (ELLs), often the children of immigrants, to achieve social mobility through a college education. ELLs consistently fail to achieve proficiency on mathematics assessments as measured by the National Assessment for Educational Progress and local assessments such as the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test. Consequently, many ELLs do not attend college. The article examines implications for educators and policymakers for resolving some of the issues that impede transforming ELLs into academic and societal achievers. Actions taken by educators and policymakers might assist ELLs in navigating the challenges encountered in their pursuit of a college education.

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