The main objective of the project is to optimise the capacities of the European school systems by identifying and exchanging European methods and best practices for linguistic integration. This should allow to cope with the increasing presence of immigrants and to offer flexible and integrative paths for language acquisition by third country nationals.
Specific Objectives are:
Analysis of the different policies developed at national and regional level with a view to facilitate the exchange of best practices in the field of linguistic integration of immigrants in primary schools;
Identify success patterns at the micro-level of education, where new methods and approaches are developed and tested (teacher training, teaching activities);
Capacity building and exchanges for key actors in primary education systems.
In LinguaINCLUSION different European partners work together to study the linguistic integration of children with a migrant background in the primary schools of the respective education systems. Their aim is to elaborate and develop examples of successful and effective practices.
In the first stage the project partners will analyse and compare the educational systems of the participating countries and the local methods supporting language acquisition and integration of children with migration background. In addition, a Manual will be issued, so as to disseminate reliable procedures and methods in the field of second language teaching, especially among teachers, but also other interested persons.
In the next project stage teachers will attend specific training sessions. They are to be made familiar with second language teaching methods and learn how to apply them in contexts where the majority language is the language of instruction. The teachers trained will subsequently apply these methods in their own classes, being regularly supervised and observed. Furthermore, the project consortium will develop and submit specific questionnaires and conduct guided interviews with teachers. The progress of language acquisition in children is to be measured and observed with several methodologies to gain insights into the effectiveness of the new teaching methods and their application. The results shall be used to fine tune the Manual for Teachers' Training.
31st December 2009 - 30th June 2011
Different mother tongues and different cultures coexisting in one nation state may represent an obstacle for social cohesion and a harmonious society, hence causing conflicts, the exclusion of migrants from the host society, xenophobia and racism. Education can be a very "powerful instrument for the achievement of social engineering", as it is the challenge of each educational system to integrate its pupils with diverse backgrounds. They shall be prepared for a diverse society respecting human rights; irrespective of their background, all of them shall have equal access to the labour market and equal opportunities of participation in the society, thus fulfilling the Lisbon aims. Education therefore represents a first step towards integration, facilitating a later socio-economic and cultural integration.
Another step coming hand in hand with education is the knowledge of language(s) as a key factor and powerful vehicle for integration. The European Commission demands that "language policy should be an essential part of any integration policy and should be accessible, affordable and available as soon as possible after the migrant's arrival". The close interdependence between the integration of immigrants and their language skills has been highlighted in the EU legal framework for integration from the very beginning and mentioned in the Conclusions of the Council of the European Union on "Justice, Home Affairs and Civil Protection" (issued in mid October 2002) as a right of immigrants to have access to information about their host society and about language courses. The European Parliament also stressed the importance of freely accessing information and the European Commission highlighted it in its First Annual Report on Migration and Integration in 2004.
European Commission - European Fund for the Integration of Third-Country Nationals "Community Actions" 2008
"This project was carried out with the support of the European Community within the Programme “Solidarity and the Management of Migration Flows” by the Fund for the Integration of third-country Nationals. The contents of this project do not necessarily reflect the position of the European Community or the National Agencies, nor does it involve any responsibility for their part. This work is protected by copyright law as an unpublished work and cannot be used, reproduced or disseminated in any way without the previous consent of the authors."
Wilmes, Sabine/ Plathner, Franziska/ Atanasoska, Tatjana (eds.) (2011): Second Language Teaching In Multilingual Classes - Basic Principles For Primary Schools. EURAC research, Bozen. Download PDF version.
Wilmes, Sabine/Prestin, Maike (eds.) (2011): Second Language Teaching – An Appraisal of 8 European Countries and Regions. Available as PDF.