The Minnesota Advocates for Immersion Network (MAIN) was formed in 1998 to provide a structure for ongoing collaboration among representatives of Minnesota’s language immersion programs and immersion experts at the University of Minnesota’s (UMN) Department of Curriculum and Instruction and Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA), one of 15 national language resource centers in the U.S.
Initially, MAIN included educators from six immersion programs and the University of Minnesota. The number of programs in Minnesota has grown rapidly in recent years. Now, there are more than sixty immersion programs across the state representing preK-12 contexts. As the number of immersion programs grew over time, participants felt that MAIN would benefit from having a more formal organizational structure and non-profit status. In the fall of 2006, individuals from eleven organizations, including immersion programs, UMN and a parent support group, formed a temporary Board of Directors that was appointed to write the articles of incorporation and bylaws and complete the 501(c) (3) application. MAIN became incorporated as a legal non-profit organization under section 501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code on December 13, 2007. Because MAIN currently has no physical location devoted to the organization, a school address (from one of the MAIN Board members) is used as the organization’s official address.