Winooski, VT: Is another immigrant colony forming as Somali refugees move in?

The school system in this refugee ‘seed’ community must educate students speaking 30 different languages.  (Imagine what that costs the local tax payer!).

Welcoming Winooski: Remember this story from last summer? The ‘bacon’ ad had to be removed from this coffee shop when a Muslim woman claimed she was offended by the sign.

This story is about the first Somali School Board member in Winooski’s history.

From My Champlain Valley  (hat tip: Joanne):

“There’s over 30 languages spoken among the families in our schools,” said Winooski School Superintendent Sean McMannon.


“The only challenge we have here was the weather, and we compared that between cold weather and the other violence in other cities, then we chose to be here,” Abdi said.  [He is talking about violent American cities, not those in Africa!—ed]

Mr. Abdi hopes his voice will speak for those who can’t, in a Winooski community that sees more and more refugees move here every year.

“In the Winooski school district about 38 percent of our students qualify for English language learning services,” Superintendent McMannon said.

Only 30 languages in the school system? Looks like Manchester has you beat there!

See our previous posts on Winooski here. Our Vermont archive is pretty interesting, see it here.

One more of Obama’s immigrant colonies in the making?

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