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Latino Daily News

Saturday April 19, 2014

Bolivian President Believes Poor Kids Need to Learn Foreign Languages

Bolivian President Believes Poor Kids Need to Learn Foreign Languages

Photo: Evo Morales

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

President Evo Morales advised Bolivian peasants, Indians and workers to make sure their children learn another language so they can apply for scholarships to study abroad.

“We have a weakness here and not just among the tropical peasant movement but throughout all of Bolivia’s peasant and labor movement: our children cannot win scholarships because they don’t speak English,” he said at an event in the lowland province of Cochabamba, his political stronghold.

In meetings the government organizes for foreign-study scholarships, no more than 2 percent of those who classify are “sons and daughters of the peasant and labor movement,” Bolivia’s first indigenous president said.

“I want you to understand me, our children (of peasants and workers) might well be the finest professionals, but if they don’t speak English, they’ll never win a scholarship for a master’s degree or a doctorate,” Morales said.

For that reason, he asked those sectors to “require” that their kids, besides speaking Spanish and some indigenous tongue, learn a foreign language in order to have the chance to win a scholarship, so that after studying abroad they can return to Bolivia capable of managing the companies and industries their government is founding.

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