I've been researching media propaganda that unjustly criticizes U.S. education. Recently, I heard a person comment on what he heard from the media, that in NYC non-English speaking students are placed in a regular classroom according to their age and are therefore unsuccessful in achieving academically, and that this is probably a nationwide practice. So I'm wondering if ESL/ELL teachers could give me some insight on what is positively/negatively occurring. Another twist to my question, could difficult living situations (growing up in a rough neighborhood, lack of sleep or nutrition, dealing with emotional stress such as from a neighborhood's prejudice) be current factors in depressing achievement? Could a lack of languaging experience in their native tongue while still in another country also be a factor?