28 SES 12 A, Europeanization of education, and the policy of migration
Since the second half of the last century the huge variety of migrant ethnic groups on the European continent has been deeply modifying the demographic structure and the social order of each country, undermining the cultural and linguistic uniformity of individual nation states (Eurostat 2011; Gaine, 2008). The issue of integration of members belonging to ‘other cultures’ in a particular social context as well as the contact dynamics among different cultures are common social phenomena. They have always existed because of the multiplicity of reasons that lead individuals, and more recently, social groups to move around different areas and territories. This question found in the past different solutions, more or less sympathetic and conflicted, through different levels of inclusion or marginality (Gaine & Gewitz, 2008). Therefore the concept of “integration” holds different meanings deposited in different historical and cultural contexts (assimilation, differential and intercultural models) (Sayad, 2002).
Current migration are structural change inside contemporary society. They are showing transformation of the global geopolitical structure, therefore they are significant phenomenon highly in order to examine dynamics of globalization and its effects on European society (Sassen 2014; Geiselberger 2017; Bauman 2017; Latour 2017). So, global migration processes and growing mobility to Europe have made very significant the analysis of social inclusion processes in relation to responses of the European education systems. Education has essential purpose to devise social integration and future society. Therefore, educational system has to change its organizational structures, its pedagogical project and its education practices to face growing migrate students. This entails to learn how to build and to live a common space together.
In that regard, the European policies have produced a convergence effect in institutional discourses towards interculturalism, however inclusion policies carried out by various European countries are different and reflect, partly, the general trends of the models of integration and construction of citizenship and, partly, the institutional models of their own school system (Milione 2011).
The exponential growth in migration flows and consolidation of stabilization processes are more and more visible through the increasing participation by the students without Italian citizenship in the Italian school system. On the demographic side it can be observed that even Italian school has experienced a reduction of the local new generation, however, the number of pupils increase (particularly in the northern regions with a low nativity rate) thank to the regular presence of immigrants’ families. On the other hand, a much more relevant fact is that heterogeneity of those social-cultural worlds has significantly increased, that face each other in the sphere of education and training, due to large variety of ethnic groups and different migration trajectories (MIUR 2017). Below, the Italian situation will be analysed in order to describe the discourses, the policies and the practices (Ball 2006) developed in response to the demand for education that students without Italian citizenship are increasingly and differently making.
Hence, this leaves open a set of questions: (a) what kind of response to cultural diversity emerges in education policies? (b) How are changing the ecology of educational practices in local contexts? (c) How do the education practices affect school outcomes and social relationships? How are local institutional actors performing inclusive actions? What forms of coexistence are developing in neighborhoods where they live? The paper intends to furnish some empirical answers to these questions through the comparative review of the alternative responses in terms of policies relating to increasing migration in the EU (Gaine, 2008) and the in-depth analysis of the immigrant students inclusion in Italian schooling (MIUR 2017; MIUR e ISMU 2016; Ongini 2016; Santagati 2015; Tarozzi 2015; Ambrosini e Molina 2004).
Following the theoretical approach of Sayad (2002), we regard the term “integration” as purified of the concepts of adaptation and assimilation that accompany it in more prominently ethnocentric traditional positions. In this perspective, by drawing on a mobile sociologies of education (Landri & Neumann, 2014) we present a study of the European inclusion policies on immigrant students and a detailed analysis of Italian schooling policies for immigrant students. This latter consists of (a) a collection of statistical data about the characteristics of the immigrant students (country of origin, age, territorial distribution) in the Italian education system from different sources (ISTAT, MIUR, ISMU); (b) a critical review of institutional documents; (c) an analysis of the practices implemented through the fundamental sociological inquiries on the theme. Inclusion of the immigrate students is analysed as an emerging process in an ecology of education practices (Gherardi 2008), that is inside the network of institutional and social actors, discourses, material devices and actions in the local education system. The working hypothesis has been: inclusion is affected by complex action nets that develop among students, families, schools, social services and no-profit associations in a specific geographical area.
The analysis of the immigrant students' inclusion practices calls into question the scholastic policies and the dominant ways of organizing the school system as regards the knowledge, the resources and the basic tools invested to face the increasing diversity of the demand for education that arise in the contemporary scenario. In particular, it raises the question of equity, that is, the capacity of the education system to provide a common basis of knowledge and skills that guarantees the full exercise of human rights and citizenship. In regard to this issue, the school system with adequate resources (financial, structural and human) can be a privileged field of construction of intercultural dialogue by virtue of its special role in education. In a global society the educational challenge concerns the achievement of the broader goal of social cohesion. The implementation of inclusive and successful education programs, in fact, implies social integration, development of social ties and sense of belonging. However, the current stiffening of the political climate is a key impediment to the concrete realization of an intercultural pedagogy, starting from the denial of a citizenship, that is the legal prerequisite to be recognized as citizens and integrated into the community they are living in. The integration of second generations can be achieved only within a context willing to include outsiders in the system of fundamental rights and benefits which belong to citizens. In addition, the school action capability is strongly related to other local agencies, that deal with caretaking and socialization. In particular, the modalities of reception, formal and informal gathering, use of free time, that can be experienced in other contexts of life, are all foundational areas of the social inclusion process, where young immigrants often experience “invisibility” or discrimination.
Ambrosini, M., Molina, S. (eds) (2004), Seconde generazioni. Un’introduzione al futuro dell’immigrazione in Italia, Bologna: il Mulino. Ball, S. J. (2006), Education Policy and Social Class, London: Routledge. Bauman, Z., (2017), Sintomi alla ricerca di un oggetto e di un nome, in Geiselberger (a cura di) cit. Eurostat (2011), Migrants in Europe. A statistical portrait of the first and second generation. Population and Social Conditions, Eurostat Statistical Books, Brussels, European Commission. Gaine, C. (2008), “Race, Ethnicity and Difference versus Imagined, in Homogeneity within the European Union”, European Educational Research Journal, Volume 7, Number 1, p. 23-37 Gaine, C., Gewirtz G. (2008), “Introduction”, European Educational Research Journal, Volume 7 Number 1, p. 18-22. Geiselberger, H. (2017), (a cura di), La grande regressione. Quindici intellettuali da tutto il mondo spiegano la crisi del nostro tempo, Feltrinelli, Milano. Gherardi, S. 2008. “Dalla comunità di pratica alle pratiche della comunità: breve storia di un concetto in viaggio”, in «Studi Organizzativi», n. 1, Franco Angeli, Milano. Landri, P. and Eszter N. (2014) “Mobile Sociologies of Education.” EERJ 13 (1): 1-8. doi:10.2304/eerj.2014.13.1.1. Latour, B. (2017), L’Europa rifugio, in Geiselberger (a cura di) cit. Milione, A. (2011), “Young immigrants at school: inclusion and location of rights in Italy”, in Italian Journal of Sogiology of Education, 2, 2011, pp. 173-198. Miur, Fondazione Ismu (2016), Alunni con cittadinanza non italiana. La scuola multiculturale nei contesti locali. Rapporto nazionale A.s. 2014/2015, Quaderni Ismu, n. 1, Milano. Miur (2017), Gli alunni stranieri nel sistema scolastico italiano, a. s. 2015/2016, Statistica e Studi. Ongini V. (2016), Il quadro normativo nazionale. Un percorso di venticinque anni, in Miur, Fondazione Ismu, Alunni con cittadinanza non italiana. La scuola multiculturale nei contesti locali, cit., pp. 181-184. Sayad, A., (1999), La double absence, Paris: Editions du Seuil. Sassen, S., (2014), Expulsions: Brutality and Complexity in the Global Economy, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. Tarozzi M. (2015), Dall’Intercultura alla giustizia sociale. Per un progetto pedagogico e politico di cittadinanza globale, Milano, Franco Angeli.
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