On This Date in Nativity History
15 September 2007
On this date, 15 September 2007, a team of four volunteer teachers launched Nativity’s own locally designed and administered ESL (English as a Second Language) Program. For about a decade, the parish had offered a weekly Mass and CCD classes in Spanish. Now, a different kind of outreach to Hispanics and to other non-English-speaking groups in the parish involved classes in English as a second language. Earlier, these classes had been offered on Saturday mornings sponsored by Hogar Hispano (now called Hogar Immigrant Services), an office of the Catholic Charities of the diocese. The Hogar program at Nativity was terminated in 2007, and was replaced that same year by a locally designed, staffed and funded program. On Saturday mornings, classes were offered at three levels, as well as assistance with computer problems the students encountered. Beginning level classes were taught bilingually, in English and Spanish. There were also advanced night classes on Wednesday and Thursday. Classes were taught in the classrooms of Nativity School. Teachers and assistants were parish volunteers who usually numbered between 12 and 15, and enrollment was usually between 30 and 40, but at its height reached 50 per semester. The program ended in 2014 as enrollment declined to an unsustainable level.