Why Don’t Mexican Immigrants Learn English? – 5 Strong Reasons

As the US continues to experience an influx of Mexican immigrants, the question of why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English is one that often arises. While some may view this as a lack of effort or interest on the part of the immigrants, there are actually several strong reasons that contribute to this phenomenon.

“Every immigrant who comes here should be required within five years to learn English or leave the country.” Theodore Roosevelt 1

“Why don’t Hispanics just speak English?” This is a question that we frequently hear in our society, with the ongoing immigration from Mexico and other countries, and despite its controversy, is a reasonable question to discuss. Some Hispanics actually do speak English because they were born and raised in places where it was said, and grew up hearing and seeing it every day.

Why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English?

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Why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English
Some Hispanics actually do speak English,though it is easy, because they were born and raised in places where it was spoken, and grew up hearing and seeing it every day, but many simply cannot speak it even if they want to, especially Hispanics and Mexicans. Here are 5 reasons why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English:

1. Unlock the Power of English

The power of language education, in particular the English language, has long been acknowledged as a valuable tool for improving people’s lives. However, many students face barriers when it comes to an effective and successful learning experience.

Therefore, there are several approaches that need to be addressed in order to unlock the full potential of English as an educative resource.

2. Breaking down financial walls

This is the best answer to why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English. For many Mexican immigrants, the need to work and provide for their families takes priority over learning a new language. This can result in limited time and resources for pursuing English language education.

Mexican immigrants may face economic barriers that prevent them from learning English. Additionally, in the future, they may need to work long hours to support themselves and their families, leaving little time for language learning.

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3. Cultural Barriers

Many immigrants may come from communities and backgrounds where Spanish is the primary language spoken, and they may have had poor access to the English language education system or resources in their home country.

Cultural differences and values may also play a role, as some immigrants may prioritize preserving their cultural identity and language over assimilating into the dominant American culture.

Economic factors, such as limited access to affordable English language classes or the need to work long hours to support their families, may also be barriers to learning English.

It is important to note that while some Mexican immigrants may not learn English, many do make efforts to learn the language to better integrate into American society and improve their job prospects.

4. Fear of Discrimination

Unfortunately, many Hispanic immigrants face discrimination and prejudice in the United States. This can create a fear of speaking English in public, as they may worry about being judged or ridiculed for their accents or mistakes.

Some immigrants may feel that if they speak English with an accent or make grammatical errors, they will be judged or treated unfairly by others who are fluent in English. This fear can make it harder for them to practice their language skills in public or seek out opportunities to improve their English.

5. Limited Opportunities to Practice

Another reason why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English is even for those who have access to English language education, opportunities to practice speaking the language can be limited. Many immigrants may live and work in communities where Spanish is the dominant language, making it difficult to immerse themselves in an English-speaking environment.

Additionally, some immigrants may work long hours or multiple jobs, leaving little time for language classes or practice.

Why do so many adult Hispanic immigrants not bother to learn English when they come to the United States?

There are several reasons why many adult Latinx and Hispanic immigrants do not learn English when they come to the United States.

  • Many Hispanic people may have limited education or come from rural areas where English was not taught.
  • Hispanic immigrants may not have access to language classes or resources like books to learn English.
  • Hispanic humans may live in communities where Spanish is the predominant language spoken.
  • Some Hispanic immigrants may feel more comfortable speaking Spanish and prefer to maintain their cultural identity.
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Jobs for Hispanic and Mexican immigrants:

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Why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English
  1. Agriculture and farming jobs, including picking crops and working on farms.
  2. Construction jobs, including carpentry, roofing, and general labor.
  3. Service industry jobs, including housekeeping, landscaping, and restaurant work.
  4. Manufacturing and factory jobs, including assembly line work and machine operation.


1. Why do Spanish people not learn English?

It isn’t accurate to say that Hispanics don’t learn English. However, there may be various reasons why some Hispanics may not learn English, such as lack of access to language education, lack of motivation or interest, or cultural or linguistic barriers.

Additionally, there may be some Hispanics who do not see the need to learn English if they do not plan to travel or work in an English-speaking country.

Adult immigrants living and working in places where they are surrounded by others who share their ethnic backgrounds are less likely to learn or be proficient in the English language, say two Purdue University researchers. 2

2. How many Mexicans don’t speak English?/Why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English?

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, approximately 50% of Mexicans in the US don’t speak the English language proficiently. As a US immigrant, this means that it is essential that you know how to speak the language of the land, which is English. 3

There are several reasons why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English, including limited access to education and language resources, economic barriers, and cultural factors.

3. Do some people in Mexico speak English?

The level of Hispanic and Mexican proficiency varies greatly depending on factors such as education, region, and exposure to the language. Educators commonly teach English, and people in tourist areas often use it.

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4. Do a lot of Mexicans speak English?

Yes, many Mexicans do speak English, but why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English? The English language is taught in schools throughout Mexico, and there are also many English-language schools and courses available.

Additionally, with Mexico being a popular destination for tourists and a close neighbor to the United States, many Mexicans have had exposure to and practiced the English language.

5. Why don’t Spanish people learn English in America?

Speaking Spanish is essential for strong family ties and the future of the language so that it does not become endangered. This statement is not entirely accurate, as many Spanish people in America learn English.

However, it is possible that some Spanish-speaking individuals may not learn English due to a variety of reasons, such as limited access to education, language barriers, cultural differences, or personal choice.

6. What percentage of Latinos do not speak English?

According to recent statistics, approximately 21% of Latinos in the United States do not speak English proficiently.

All in all, why don’t Mexican immigrants learn English? or why should immigrants learn to speak English while there are certain exceptions to the trend of Mexican immigrants not learning English, these five reasons can help to explain why it is a common occurrence. By understanding these barriers, we can work to create more accessible and supportive environments for immigrants to learn and thrive in the United States.


  1. Wikipedia contributors. (2023b). Theodore Roosevelt. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theodore_Roosevelt
  2. Study: Immigrants who live, work together less apt to learn English – Purdue University. (n.d.). https://www.purdue.edu/newsroom/releases/2013/Q2/study-immigrants-who-live,-work-together-less-apt-to-learn-english.html
  3. EnglishProficiency Editorial Team. (2022). Why Do So Many US Immigrants Learn English? – EnglishProficiency.com. EnglishProficiency.com. https://englishproficiency.com/blog/reasons-why-us-immigrants-learn-english/