“BUT WHERE DID THEY GO?” IMMIGRANT ORIGIN STUDENTS CONNECTIONS AND DISCONNECTIONS FROM SCHOOL DURING THE PANDEMIC EMERGENCY
University of Florence, Italy
The fact that the school system, unfortunately, tends to reproduce social inequalities is a well-studied and established phenomenon. Bourdieu himself, author of "La reproduction", however, ended up collaborating with the French state to create specific interventions capable of overturning this situation and ensuring that, on the contrary, the school could assume the role of educational inclusion and social promotion that belongs to it. Many efforts have been made in this sense, and interventions for the integration of minorities of immigrant origin have multiplied in Italy over the last 20 years, while maintaining a strong local component. But what happened during the pandemic? What happened to these pupils during the lockdown and school closures periods? How did their specific condition impact their school paths then and now, as a consequence? The paper is based on two ongoing projects (“Bella Presenza. Metodi, strategie e pratiche per il contrasto alla povertà educativa”, funded by fondazione Con i bambini and “Apriti Sesamo. Lingue e linguaggi per l’inclusione”, funded by FAMI) that have made possible to closely observe what has happened at the level of primary and secondary schools with respect to immigrant origin pupils and the strategies adopted in school and at local level in order to face to the new pandemic scenario.
The health emergency has highlighted that the socio-economic gap, the different linguistic and cultural background and the digital divide are very widespread obstacles, which do not exclusively concern students of immigrant origin but which particularly affect them, at the intersection of multiple difficulties (linguistic, cultural, socio-economic etc.) and discriminations. The emergency also highlighted how belonging to specific communities became a reference point for families and students with respect to the strategies to be adopted in relation to school attendance. The school itself, as educational system, has had to recognize the fundamental role of the wider educating community, asking for support from local authorities and the private social sector of the territory precisely to reach the families of the students most in difficulty, for instance the ones who can not speak Italian fluently, those who have never connected to video-lessons, who suddenly disappeared from virtual classrooms and who have been 'hung up' and brought back into formal educational paths only thanks to joint actions of the territorial networks. The school itself, as educational system, has had to recognize the fundamental role of the wider educating community, asking for support from local authorities and the private social sector of the territory precisely to reach the families of the students most in difficulty, those who have never connected to video-lessons, who suddenly disappeared from virtual classrooms and who only thanks to joint actions of the territorial network have been 'hung up' and brought back into formal educational paths. Nonetheless, the difficulties of a highly discontinuous attendance and the consequent lack of socialization among peers has had and is having very strong consequences on pupils of non-Italian origin, with evident results especially at the level of upper secondary schools.
DEMOCRATIC LANGUAGE EDUCATION AGAINST EDUCATIONAL FAILURE AND FOR SOCIAL INCLUSION: THE PERCEPTION OF ‘DEMOCRACY’ IN LEARNING/TEACHING PROCESSES
Giscel Sardegna, Italia
In the Italian context, the school has taken on an increasingly determining and incisive role in education over time. Questions arise on education and its purpose: as it is stated in the text “Indicazioni Nazionali” edited by Miur (2012), to deal with teaching and learning processes means to strengthen competences and life skills. They represent the basis of the conscious use of knowledge and they offer the opportunity to become involved in lifelong learning.
Nowadays, there is a widespread awareness of teaching processes’ complexity and difficulties. At a national level, several critical issues continue to hamper students’ formative success (Miur 2018): inequality and gap of socio-economic conditions between northern and southern regions of the country, educational poverty (Nanni, Pellegrino 2018), early school-leaving phenomenon, old and new forms of social exclusion and illiteracy (Save the Children 2018). These issues are embedded in a national framework characterized by historical plurilingualism and the presence of new linguistic minorities.
The present work focuses on the field of Educational Linguistics which investigates language learning and teaching as well as the importance of language in education and its role in real-world situations (Vedovelli, Casini 2018).
The main topic concerns the educational model known as “Democratic Language Education” which tries to counter formative failure and to promote social inclusion (De Mauro 2018). In this sense, the role played by this model has been analyzed in determining students’ competences so as to perform an active citizenship in society. The research activity relies on questions which aim to discover how schools offer an equal, inclusive and democratic education to students; the extent to which the concept of “Language Education” is known by teachers; how much “democracy” is involved in teaching and learning processes according to the perception of teachers and students who attend year 13th in Sardinian high school. The research tools used are structured questionnaires and focus group interviews.
Quantitative research outcomes show that, within the investigated context, the presence of democracy in teaching/learning processes achieves an average score of 2,7 for teachers and an average of 2,6 for students. Specifically for students, this occurs to a greater extent in technical/professional high school courses.
Future perspectives about this research could be including other social contexts and actors, also considering implementing a “democracy index”.
De Mauro T. (2018), L’educazione linguistica democratica, Bari, Editori Laterza.
MIUR (2012), Indicazioni nazionali per il curricolo della scuola dell’infanzia e del primo ciclo d’istruzione, Annali della Pubblica Istruzione.
MIUR (2018), Una politica nazionale di contrasto del fallimento formativo e della povertà educativa. Cabina di regia per la lotta alla dispersione scolastica e alla povertà educativa.
Nanni W., Pellegrino V. (2018), La povertà educativa e culturale: un fenomeno a più dimensioni, in Caritas Italiana, Povertà in attesa. Rapporto 2018 su povertà e politiche di contrasto in Italia, Maggioli Editore, pp. 91-175.
Save the Children (2018), Nuotare contro corrente. Povertà educativa e resilienza in Italia, Save the Children Italia, Roma.
Vedovelli M., Casini S. (2016), Che cos’è la linguistica educativa, Roma, Carocci.
IMPLEMENTING HERITAGE LANGUAGE EDUCATION IN MIGRANT HOSTING COUNTRIES: LESSONS FROM THE AUSTRIAN CASE
University of Bologna, Italy
The paper explores the policy challenges and best practices related to the introduction of migrant languages into national school curricula. It is based on the assumption that languages can be considered economic assets and that an individual who masters a plurality of such assets can therefore be regarded as a resource to society. At present, however, language education in Europe is predominantly based on an assimilationist interpretation of migrant integration. The paper represents an early milestone of a research endeavor that investigates the features of heritage language education in Austria as an advanced experience of multilingual education (European Commission, 2019), with a view to inspiring further research and policy reflection.
LANGUAGE COMPLEXITY IN THE ITALIAN ADULT EDUCATION SYSTEM. FIRST FINDINGS FROM A MIXED METHOD RESEARCH
The scholastic - and above all linguistic - life of the CPIAs, the 30 centers Italy entrusts adult education to, is probably the most advanced point of the communicative complexity reached in our country today. Every day, about 1000 "alfabetizzatori", mostly former elementary school teachers, teach Italian to students who have four mother tongues but have never learned to write one, who attends once out of ten lessons, who have whatsapp but only for vocals, who suddenly disappear because their husbands decide to move to Germany.
In classes that start with 15 students but after a month have 25 and 5 the month after that, teachers who used to work only with Italian-speaking children who at most passively knew the dialect must find a way to teach their students how to hold a pen, how to draw their name, how to follow with their eyes the spatial articulation of a sheet of paper and, only then, how to read and write.
Almost 10 years after the transformation of CTP into CPIA (D.P.R. 236/12; Linee guida 2015), the levels of Italian L2 recognized by the Ministry are still only A1 and A2. Everything that comes before A1 (pre-Alfa, Alfa, pre-A1) is compressed into courses that keep learners with very different needs together, or even ends up directly in A1, because, with A2, it is the only "ordinamental" course. On the other hand, it happens that teachers with often inadequate or incomplete training think they can facilitate the comprehension of initial synophon learners by shouting in Roman dialect, or by asking each one of them to "read" a sentence written on the blackboard that, after the first repetitions by the teacher, everyone has already easily learned by heart.
After conducting the monitoring of CPIAs on behalf of MIUR throughout the three-year period following the issuance of the Guidelines (2016-2019), INDIRE continued the research independently to investigate the qualitative aspects of Italian adult education, starting with the most interesting data that emerged from the previous research. Of the 6 clusters in which CPIAs were grouped, the one on literacy identified 10 "top performing" CPIAs that are currently involved in a research coordinated by this writer. By meeting managers and teachers, we discover a school that, despite the mentioned problems, is (unknowingly) in the vanguard and could define the coordinates of the school-of-the-future.
The linguistic problem, which is predominant in the CPIAs, reveals an extreme multilingualism that strongly undermines a series of certainties, starting from the notion of linguistic integration (Garcia 2017). In an environment where the minority language is Italian and where didactic interaction necessarily passes through bridge languages of all kinds, breaking up into multi-channel micro-interactions (verbal, visual, gestural), the most suitable interpretive approach is that of translanguaging, because it does not pretend to discretize and welcomes in a new type of continuum a reality that asks to be oriented, rather than governed, through completely new didactic strategies.
MAINTENANCE AND USE OF HERITAGE LANGUAGES AND ITALIAN “LINGUA FILIALE” BY SECOND GENERATION STUDENTS WITH MIGRATORY BACKGROUND
Università di Udine, Italy
This proposal presents some of the results of a larger quantitative and qualitative study that involved over 1,000 students from primary and lower secondary schools in Friuli Venezia Giulia region, Italy. The field research phase of the Impact FVG 2018-2020 project took place during the 2018/2019 school year and consisted in a survey with a sociolinguistic questionnaire inspired by the one adopted in Piedmont and Pavia province by Chini (2004) and Chini and Andorno (2018). The data were subsequently analyzed at a statistical level and here is presented a synthesis of the results concerning the linguistic competence and the uses of both heritage languages, and of Italian “lingua filiale” by pupils with a migratory background (“filial language”, Favaro 2020).
As it appeared in previous and similar researches in different contexts (Chini 2018a), the results show a regression in the competence and uses of the heritage languages, which is paralleled by an extension of the Italian, a code that for these second generation students with migratory background can no more be considered as a second language, but as a “lingua filiale” (Favaro 2020). The reasons behind this shift may be different, and there are many factors that influence these results (Chini and Andorno 2018, Chini 2018b), however speakers seem to be still well aware and share positive perceptions about the importance and usefulness of all the resources available in their plurilingual repertoires. Most of the pupils reached through the questionnaire also express a wish for more opportunities to practice and deepen the knowledge of the codes inherited from their families and connected to the distant migratory past. Teachers and school seem on the other hand to be struggling behind and it is still missing a prompt and effective response, able to protect the linguistic rights of these emerging bilinguals and to stimulate the maintenance of their heritage languages.
Chini M. (2018a), Italiano e lingue d’origine in repertori e usi linguistici di alunni di origine immigrata, in Carotenuto C. et al. (eds.), Pluriverso italiano: incroci linguistico-culturali e percorsi migratori in lingua italiana. Proceedings of the International Conference of Macerata-Recanati (10-11 December 2015), Eum, Macerata, pp. 419-444.
Chini M. (2018b), Plurilinguismo in famiglie e alunni immigrati nella provincia di Pavia, in “Lingue antiche e moderne”, 7, pp. 135-163.
Chini M. (ed. by) (2004), Plurilinguismo e immigrazione in Italia. Un’indagine sociolinguistica a Pavia e Torino, FrancoAngeli, Milan.
Chini M. e Andorno C. (eds.) (2018), Repertori e usi linguistici nell’immigrazione. Una indagine su minori alloglotti dieci anni dopo, FrancoAngeli, Milan.
Favaro G. (2020), Bilinguismi al plurale: per scelta, per nascita, per migrazione. Repertori e pratiche linguistiche nelle scuole e nei servizi educativi per l’infanzia, in “Italiano Lingua-Due”, 12, 1, pp. 288-306.
MINORITY LANGUAGES AND TEACHER TRAINING PROGRAMMES IN PERU
University of Cagliari, Italy
Peru is located in one of the world's areas of greatest linguistic diversity. Around one hundred languages are distributed in its territory, many of them in the central-northern area (Eberhard et al. 2019).
Since the 1970s, the Peru has passed laws to protect this linguistic diversity and in favour of bilingual education (Cabrera 2014; Casu 2014). Those proposals have been reproached for having been drawn up without any collaboration with the addressees and for being addressed exclusively to the indigenous population, with the aim of a progressive process of integration (MINEDU - DIGEIBIR 2013). A 1991 new law placed greater emphasis on the value of the linguistic and cultural realities of the different areas of the country (Zúñiga 2008). This new perspective aimed at real intercultural exchange and encouraged associations, international institutions, NGOs and indigenous groups to organize new proposals for bilingual schools and educational programmes, even in many villages where the central administration still did not guarantee any educational continuity (Cabrera 2014).
The Asociación Interétnica de Desarrollo de la Selva Peruana (AIDeSeP), located in the Amazon region and a reference point for around 1,800 indigenous communities, has focused its action on the training of indigenous bilingual intercultural teachers through the ForMaBiAP (Fomación de Maestros Bilingües de la Amazonía Peruana) programme, based in Iquitos (Casu, 2014). The programme, set up in 1988, aims to train bilingual primary school teachers to enable them to implement intercultural teaching practices, safeguarding the traditions and needs of the different populations of the Peruvian Amazon.
The aim of this paper is to provide, within the framework of the linguistic and educational policies of Peru, a description of the activities carried out in the ForMaBiAP programme, highlighting the strengths and limitations of this proposal. The analysis of a complex reality so distant from European experiences can also have the advantage of facilitating the comparison with what has been done so far in Italy and in Europe and perhaps suggest new perspectives and reflections to the European debate about language minorities.
Badini Riccardo (a cura di), Amazzonia indigena e pratiche di autorappresentazione, Milano, FrancoAngeli.
Cabrera Elena Burga, 2014, Desafíos desde los pueblos/culturas y lenguas del Perú a la educación intercultural bilingüe, in Badini (a cura di), 61-72.
Casu Manuela, 2014, Identità indigena nell’Amazzonia peruviana: Formabiap e la sua scommessa formativa, in Badini (a cura di),49-59.
MINEDU-DIGEIBIR. 2013. Hacia una educación intercultural bilingüe de calidad. Propuesta pedagógica, Lima, Ministerio de Educación (http://www.minedu.gob.pe/minedu/archivos/a/002/01-general/2-propuesta_pedaggogica_eib_2013.pdf).
Montoya Rodrigo, 2011, Cuando la cultura se convierte en política, in Revista Andaluza de Antropología 1, 41-62.
Zúñiga Madeleine, 2008, La educación intercultural bilingüe: el caso peruano, Buenos Aires, Fund. Laboratorio de Políticas Públicas.
Eberhard David M., Simons Gary F., Fennig Charles D. (eds), 2019, Ethnologue: languages of the world, 22nd ed., Dallas, Texas, SIL International (http://www.ethnologue.com).