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The Census asks questions about language use at home to locate groups of people who speak a language other than English. Their isolation or integration into a primarily English speaking community can be determined by their ability to speak English proficiently.

Language Spoken at Home, 1990-2000
1990 2000
Number Percent Number Percent
Only English 78,876 96.29% 96,792 93.94%
Spanish 1,330 1.62% 3,025 2.94%
Other Indo-European* 1,005 1.23% 1,419 1.38%
Asian Language** 656 0.80% 1,502 1.46%
Other 46 0.06% 295 0.29%
Total Population Age 5+ 81,913 100.00% 103,033 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,304 43.11%
Other Indo-European* 364 25.65%
Asian Language** 645 42.94%
Other Language 140 47.46%
Total 2,453 2.38%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 392 29.47%
Other Indo-European* 161 16.02%
Asian Language** 337 51.37%
Other Language 0 -
Total 890 1.09%

* "Other Indo-European" excludes English and Spanish. "Indo-European" is not synonymous with "European." French, German, Hindi, and Persian are all classified as Indo-European. Hungarian, on the other hand, is lumped into "Other Language."

** "Asian Language" includes languages indigenous to Asia and Pacific islands areas that are not also Indo-European languages. Chinese, Japanese, Telugu, and Hawaiian are all classified here.

Also note that ability to speak English "very well" is based on the self-assessment of those responding to Census questions, not on a test of language ability.

Source: Census 2000 analyzed by the Social Science Data Analysis Network (SSDAN).

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