Agree with mtmynd, in part
Great book out called "Mexifornia" that addresses most of these topics. The author is a native Central Californian who grew up on a farm that used immigrant labor. He is currently a college professor at one of the state universities. He claims that the educational system in the 50's and 60's was far more suited to deal with the immigrant children because it did NOT sympathize with the language barriers or the cultural barriers. It emphasized blending in, culturally and in every other way. Even the white kids who tried to emulate the Hispanic ways were singled out and disciplined, if need be. The result was that the imigrant kids learned English and obtained most or all of the tools they needed to be a success in later life.
It isn't about PREJUDICE. It's about becoming an AMERICAN, and getting an equal(not equivalent) education to go with it. This is where the liberal/racial sympathies have completely betrayed our alien population.
It's a powerful book, and almost all of the reasons I left California are embodied in it.
As for the cultural aspect, I hold, with mtmynd, that this isn't our problem. If someone wants to drop out of school and make babies, or fix cars, then that is their call. They can snivel all they want, later, about not getting a fair chance and not earning enough money. Whose fault is that? Besides, there are plenty of opportunities for adults to go back and get a GED and go on from there if they are motivated to do it. I'm not saying it's easy, but you pay for your mistakes in life. We all do.
This isn't JUST an immigrant problem, FYI. As the article stated, it also spreads across racial divisions and affects white children and other ethnic groups as well.
The same applies, across the board. You screwed up; you fix it. Here's the tools.
Here's another little postulate for you: Teenagers aren't children, in the literal sense. They are in the legal sense, of course. But teenagers are in a peculiar gray area where they exercise their powers to act like adults in many ways, while retaining the legal status of a child.
My parents used to ask me: "When are you going to return?" (from a date) and I would defiantly tell me them I would return whenever I felt like it: 2:00, 3:00, 12:30, whenever. That was a fine return of ingratitude for their forbearance and courtesy in asking me to set my own curfew! And I was a relatively GOOD teenager!
Parents have still less control over their teenage children today. It's almost impossible to effectively ground a teenager over the age of fifteen; they find ways around it. Corporal punishment? forget it, you'll end up in jail. Try to keep them from having sex? Hah! Trying drugs? Hahaha! They've usually done these things way before high school is even a twinkle in their parent's eyes. The bottom line is, while teenagers are not legal adults, they should still, to some extent, be held responsible for the consequences of their own actions. Either that, or we need to find ways to empower their parents and teachers to discipline them effectively so that they will continue to learn that consequences exist, while not bearing the full brunt of that burden.
"Texas falling behind!" Oh, really! What ridiculous priorities people have, these days! What an absurd focus of concern!