Workplace ESL at Levi Strauss: Dropouts speak out
Peirce, Bonny N.
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This paper investigates why over 50 workers who qualified for ESL training did not participate in the EWP programs offered on-site at two garment factories in Canada. Findings are drawn from a research project commissioned by Levi Strauss & Co. (Canada) in 1990. Results indicate that advertised programs, supervisor resistance, production and income anxiety, domestic and social pressure are more likely to lead to "dropout" than limitations in the programs per se. The authors conclude if an EWP programs is to be effective, it must address not only the linguistic needs of the ESL workforce in a particular context, but its relationship to larger social and economic structures in the workplace and wider community.