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Arizona's Foreign-Born Population Has Better English Skills Than Other Border States

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Of the states that share a border with Mexico, Arizona has the highest rate of foreign-born residents who report speaking English "very well."

According to statistics released today by the Census Bureau, a little less than 50 percent of foreign-born Arizona residents said they speak English less than "very well." This only includes people who speak a language other than English at home. Nationwide, the Census Bureau found that just over 50 percent of the foreign-born population speaks English less than "very well," meaning Arizona's rate is actually slightly better than the national average, although it's within the margin of error.

See also:
-Arizona Charter Schools Often Ignore Latino Students and English-Language Learners

Arizona's foreign-born population actually has better English-speaking skills than a couple of Midwestern states, as you can see from the map above.

According to the Census Bureau stats, people born in Latin America or the Caribbean have a lower rate of speaking English "very well" than immigrants from anywhere else in the world:

The Census stats also reveal that the rates of speaking English "very well" go up among people who've been in the country longer. The rate of high-level English-speaking of immigrants who arrived before 1980 is currently around 63 percent, whereas it's only around 44 percent for those who arrived in 2000 or later.

Among countries with more than 1 million residents in the United States, fewer than half of the people from Mexico, China, El Salvador, Vietnam, Cuba, and Korea reported speaking English "very well."

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Follow Matthew Hendley at @MatthewHendley.

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