Finally truth about language the language school surfaces? Illegal English:
With all the gravity that is placed on the pledge, you’d think that language school kids would be very good about only speaking their chosen language, both fearing potentially-wasted money and getting on the bad sign of the infamous ‘language-school police.’ But you’d think wrong.
So the registered trademark of Middlebury, “No English Spoken Here,” is not as pure and sacred as one might think, but that doesn’t mean the schools aren’t good. They still are probably the best way to learn a language in an immersion environment. Even abroad, the temptation to speak English can be far worse because you have to deal with culture shock in addition to your inability to speak.
The English Spoken Here post does a good job describing why people break the pledge — language school is stressful. There is no outlet, no English music, no NYTimes.com. But the post misses the differentiation of Middlebury undergraduate students vs. other institution students. My guess is that language pledge violators are more often Middlebury students who know the campus, know English-speaking people on campus, etc. I also ponder how the honor code plays in to Middlebury undergrads studying languages during the summer — what duty do non-language school students have in keeping other students’ pledge and is there a duty to report peers breaking the pledge?