Mobility is one of the characteristics of the 21st century. It has a big part in our private lives and considerably determines our professional career. In some professions to such an extent that being mobile is not only an added value but has become a prerequisite.
A person choosing to be mobile makes a deliberate decision and will seek ways to prepare for and adapt to his/her new environment. For different reasons, children involved are mostly left with no choice at all and suffer from coping with the consequences, be they social, cultural or educational. Problems in their adaptation process, if not properly addressed, will seriously hamper their personal development.
Conscious of these challenges, AER member regions have expressed the need to tackle problems in relation to the education of migrant and travelling children by:
On 3rd July 2008, the European Commission has launched a public consultation on its Green Paper "Migration & mobility: challenges and opportunities for EU education systems".
The Green Paper aims at creating and improving the necessary educational framework conditions for migrants in order to provide them as much as possible with a chance to draw level with their peers in the host country. The document thus contributes amongst others to promoting equal opportunities, social cohesion and the achievement of the Lisbon goals.
AER has acknowledged the major role of education for integration in the Final declaration of its last General Assembly in Tampere. It is against this backdrop as well as the contributions received in the context of our survey on the education of migrant and travelling children that AER has prepared its draft position concerning the Green Paper. Contributions, comments and other input to the AER position can be sent until 16 December to: Jascha Scheele