Multilingual Education in the Light of Diversity: Lessons Learned

While multilingualism has always been an integral part of Europe, it can be argued that since the beginning of the 21st century it has also become an important feature of many national education systems. The complex linguistic landscape of modern classrooms is shaped by the presence of historical non-dominant language groups, growing mobility and new waves of migrants and refugees that bring a variety of new languages into schools and changing educational and workplace goals for multilingual and multi-literate citizens. The challenge for education systems is to adapt to these complex realities and provide a quality education which takes into consideration learners’ needs along with their rich linguistic and cultural resources, whilst at the same time balancing these with social, cultural and political demands. In the light of the above, there is a need to document good practices and successful policy lessons on implementation of multilingual approaches in schools across Member States and beyond, as well as explore effective and innovative methods in teaching and training strategies. This report builds on the results of the EC study on “Language teaching and learning in multilingual classrooms” and goes more in-depth on analysing how national education systems can better support multilingualism in their schools.

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