BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Buffalo's Herman Badillo Bilingual Academy has a new plaque near its front doors, crediting it as the birthplace of bilingual education in the city.

Herman Badillo was the first Puerto Rican born congressman and a pioneer of bilingual education. The academy that bears his name is one of two bilingual schools in the city. 

The Hispanic Heritage Council of Western New York said with the growing diversity in the area, bilingual education benefits everyone.

"We really need to capitalize on the fact we have people who speak other languages and bring other cultural riches to our city, and when we capitalize on that diversity it enriches everyone and makes us competitive," said the organization's secretary, Tamara Alsace.