A new field of education is emerging in a world increasingly connected by ties of travel, commerce and migration. Language skills and cultural sensitivity is the new currency of this world order. How well pre-schools and schools can deal with this is a determining factor for individuals and for societies. Policy makers are taking more and more interest in this matter. Please find recent reviews and policy recommendations by EU , CoE , OECD and UNESCO in the field of education for migrant children, promotion of multilingualism and integration.
A. European Union - Immigration and language learning in Europe
In recent years many EU countries have seen a significant increase in immigration, with major implications for their school systems. Please find the Green paper, the consultation report and policy guidelines on the education of children with a migrant background - adopted on 26 November 2009 by the EU education ministers, and officially referred to as “Council conclusions"
B. Council of Europe – Recommendations on integration
Recommendation CM/Rec(2008)4 of the Committee of Ministers to member states on strengthening the integration of children of migrants and of immigrant background
C. Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development –
Reviews on migrant education
Migrant education is high on the policy agenda in many OECD countries. While the integration of immigrants into the labour market has been extensively researched, focusing on outcomes for their children and reviewing education policies at the international level has rarely been done. The OECD Thematic Review on Migrant Education will focus on the education outcomes of children of immigrants, with an emphasis on ‘schools’ (pre-school, primary school, and secondary school), while noting that the process of integration is multi-directional, interactive, and non-linear.
OECD - Notes on migrant education in participating countries
The OECD Review of Migrant Education was launched to help policy makers to design and implement migrant education policy successfully in their countries. The OECD notes provide solid facts about access, participation and student performance of immigrant students compared to their native peers and identify a set of policy options based on evidence of what works and examples of experience from many countries.
D. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization –
A Pillar of Cultural Diversity
- It is urgent to take action to promote multilingualism, in other words to encourage the development of coherent regional and national language policies which give the opportunity for an appropriate and harmonious use of languages in a given community and country. Such policies promote measures allowing each speaker community to use its mother tongue in private and public domains of language use and enabling the speakers to learn and use additional languages: local, national and international. Mother-tongue speakers of national or international languages should be encouraged to learn and use other languages of the country and regional and international languages.