作者：Brendan Kirby 来源：lifezette 2016-10-21 10:33
A record 64.7 million people living in the United States last year spoke a language other than English at home, an increase fueled both by immigration and a growing number of native-born Americans who speak other languages.
The numbers come in a report released Tuesday by the Center for Immigration Studies. The 64.7 million figure is up 8.7 percent from five years earlier and has more than doubled since 1990.
The share of U.S. residents speaking languages other than English at home, just 11 percent in 1980, is now 21.5 percent. Some 44 percent of them, nearly 28.5 million people, were born in the United States. And they are not all children — 64.3 percent of American-born adults still speak the language of their parents at home.“The level of immigration is so high and many people who were speaking non-English languages at home.” said Steven Camarota, director of research at the Center for Immigration Studies.
Camarota said the number of American-born people who are speaking other languages is rising even as some children of immigrants give up the languages of their parents.
The significance of not speaking English at home is not that great if people are fluent in America's dominant language when they are outside the home. But nearly 40 percent of the people who spoke a foreign language at home in 2015 reported to the Census Bureau that they speak English "less than very well."
Seven different languages now are spoken by more than 1 million U.S. residents.
He said the recent growth in Arabic, Hindi, and Urdu speakers reflects increases in refugees, guest workers, and foreign students from the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent.
Perhaps no institution grapples with language barriers more than schools. In 2015, 22.2 percent of school-age children in the United States spoke a foreign language at home. In California, it is approaching half of all residents ages five to 17 — 44.7 percent. The rate of school-age children speaking a foreign language at home is one in five or higher in 16 states.