07 SES 04 A, Inclusion of Newcomers and Refugees Part 1
Paper Session to be continued in 07 SES 06 A
The contribution arises from the European research project Migrant Children and Communities in a Transforming Europe (MiCREATE) (HORIZON 2020 - 822664) aimed at to identify and respond to specific newly arrived children needs and translate them into policy measures for educational professionals, practitioners and political decision-makers in order to stimulate social inclusion.
Migration to Europe is not a new phenomenon; however, the composition of arriving migrants has changed considerably in recent years due to the existing conflict zones in the Middle East and elsewhere. The Eurostat reports indicate that migration phenomenon has grown considerably in the last five years and European countries are faced with an unprecedented situation, especially in view of the fact that current immigration to Europe can no longer be governed by economically oriented migration policies but has to comply with humanitarian-oriented asylum law. The need to rethink integration policies and strategies starting from different humanistic and social science viewpoints is therefore timely and, above all, necessary to investigate the current situation and propose adequate solutions (Mügge and van der Haar, 2016; Penninx and Garcés-Mascareñas, 2016; Rudiger and Spencer, 2003). The present situation calls for the advancement of educational resources and for development of new expertise in educational institutions, especially because newly arrived migrant children have unique learning needs.
In this regard, we proposed a project in collaboration with other 11 countries with the main objective of stimulating the integration of migrant children and creating a space allowing children to express themselves and their interests through the adoption of a child-centred approach to migrant integration at the educational and policy level. This child-centred approach (Clemence, Riggs, and Augoustinos, 2014) is followed throughout 12 work packages with the aim to circumvent the common-sense presuppositions about what “we”-adults tend to think of as the indicators and stimulators of integration (Harding, 1991).
This paper focuses specifically on the Work Package 3: Reception Communities, grounded in a position that the context of host societies is one of the most important characteristics affecting integration processes and provides an important way to understand the experiences of migrant groups in a certain country. Stemming from this, the main objectives of this work package are:
to gather quantitative data on the diverse groups of migrant children in different settings
to review national integration policies, good practices and initiatives (GO and NGO)
to collect data about the topical challenges of the integration of migrant children identified in participant countries.
to evaluate the extent to which a child-centred approach is taken into account in policies concerning the integration of migrant children and their families.
to assess the stakeholders’ needs, identify gaps for both programme development and further research, and to evaluate to what extent the stakeholders are ready to introduce change and use the project outcomes in their work.
to engage the stakeholders as change-enablers and potential adopters in discussions and
to cultivate readiness for change.
to review political and media discourse analysis from existing literature.
to review existing literature on general public attitudes towards migration issues
It is important to clarify that although this Work Package will be carried out in Slovenia, Austria, UK, Denmark, Spain and Poland, this paper will refer only to Spanish context. This is, how the immigration issue has developed within Spanish society in the last few years and the outcomes that will emerge from WP3.
The Work Package 3 will be carried out from April to June 2019 and will be developed through four specific tasks: 1) The work will start with analysis of datasets, this is, an analysis of national data focused on migrants and migrant children, nationality, gender, age, residency status, school participation, etc. identifying the gaps. 2) After that, we will continue with an assessment of institutional support through public policies and best practices, including educational policies at the national level. Public policy evaluation will provide preliminary reports that inform the early work on impact in the subsequent work packages. Consistent with the overall objective of the project, the child-centred approach of existing policies will also be evaluated. 3) Work package additionally involves fieldwork interviews with main stakeholders at the national level, where data about the topical challenges of the integration of migrant children will be collected and identified. Between 10 and 15 interviews with officials, policy-makers, social workers and NGO representatives will be conducted in Spain in order to assess stakeholder needs, identificate gaps for programme development and look for further research directions. At the same time, we will evaluate how much stakeholders are ready to change and use our project outcomes in their work. The stakeholders will be engaged as change-enablers and potential adopters in discussions early enough to allow insight into what they need and in what form, and to cultivate readiness for change if it appears that the need for change is not as obvious for potential adopters. 4) Finally, we will pursue a review of recent analysis done in order to gain insight in public attitudes towards migration issues, stereotypes and ways of representing migrants and refugees. To do so, we will also include review of political and media discourse analysis related to the integration of refugees and migrants (desk research) and analysis of existent public opinion polls on national and international level (European Values Survey – EVS, Eurostat etc.) and attitudes towards migration issues.
At the moment of submitting this paper, we can’t present final conclusions because the Work Package has not begin yet. However, when the ECER conference will take place, the reports will be done and, therefore, we will be able to talk about outcomes and findings. Meanwhile, we propose a series of expected outcomes in the WP3: - State of the art: we will present: a) the structure of migrant communities in Spain as receiving country, including existing datasets, statistics and other quantitative data; b) a review of integration policies, initiatives and best practices on a national level. - Fieldwork with experts: we will provide: a) an assessment of stakeholder needs; b) identification of gaps for programme development; c) further research directions. - Political and media discourse analysis and review of public opinion: we will give an overview of the stereotypes, narratives and attitudes of political, media and general public discourses in relation to migrant integration issues. In addition to this, thanks to initial inquiries by talking in informal way with some stakeholders, we can say that in Spain the reception of migrant children has become in a major difficulty. Every day many children arrive in Spain without a family and the country does not know where to host them. At the same time, there are no clear integrative policies, as, depending on the organisation, policies vary. In this way, MiCREATE project comes up as a good opportunity for improving integration policies in Spain from educational and pedagogical practices.
Clemence, D., Riggs, D. and Augoustinos, M. (2014). Research with Children of Migrant and Refugee Backgrounds: A Review of Child-Centered Research Methods. Child Indicators Research, 7(1), 209–227. Doomernik, J. and Bruquetas-Callejo, M (2016). National Immigration and Integration Policies in Europe Since 1973. In Garcés-Mascareñas, B. and Penninx, R. (eds), Integration Processes and Policies in Europe. Contexts, Levels and Actors. New York/Dordrecht/London: Springer Open. European Commission (2016, June 7). Action Plan on the integration of third country nationals. Retrieved from: https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/sites/homeaffairs/files/what-we-do/policies/european-agenda-migration/proposal-implementation-package/docs/20160607/communication_action_plan_integration_third-country_nationals_en.pdf European Council (2004, November). Common Basic Principles for Immigrant Integration Policy in the EU. Retrieved from https://www.eesc.europa.eu/resources/docs/common-basic-principles_en.pdf European Commission (2005, September 1). A Common Agenda for Integration Framework for the Integration of Third-Country Nationals in the European Union. Retrieved from https://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2005:0389:FIN:EN:PDF Harding, F. (1991). Perspectives on child care policy. London: Longman. Mügge, L. and van der Haar, M. (2016). Who Is an Immigrant and Who Requires Integration? Categorizing in European Policies. In: Penninx and Garcés-Mascareñas (eds.), Integration Processes and Policies in Europe. Contexts, Levels and Actors. New York/Dordrecht/London: Springer Open. Newbigging, K. and Thomas, N. (2011). Good practice in social care for refugee and asylum-seeking children. Child Abuse Review, 20(5), 374-390. Penninx, R. and Garcés-Mascareñas, B. (eds.) (2016). Integration processes and policies in Europe. Contexts, Levels and Actors. New York: Springer. Rudiger, A. and Spencer, S. (2003). Social Integration of Immigrants and Ethnic Minorities: Policies to Combat Discrimination. Paper presented at the conference on ‘The Economic and Social Aspects of Migration’. Brussels. 21–22 Jan. Tubergen, F. (2006). Immigrant Integration: a cross national study. New York: LFB Scholarly Publishing LLC.
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