Helping Students In Acceptance: Teachers Workshop

Classrooms in the EU are becoming more diverse, creating a wealth of learning opportunities as well as presenting specific challenges. According to UNICEF, there are approximately 5.4 million child migrants in Europe and children constitute over half the refugee population. While teacher training in special needs education (e.g. dyslexia) is often extensive, teachers are rarely given the specific knowledge and skills that will help them create the best educational outcomes for all in diverse classrooms. Such skills would include teaching their native language as a foreign language, helping students deal with trauma, and methods to promote intercultural dialogue. These skill and knowledge gaps will have to be explicitly addressed to achieve SDG4, inclusive and quality education for all. Enter the Erasmus+ HESTIA (Helping Students in Acceptance) Project, a partnership of Maastricht University and five schools across Europe. This ongoing collaboration aims at sharing best practices for human rights education and the inclusion of migrant students in the classroom, combined with big ambitions for making wider changes for teacher training in Europe. The CELL team was invited to take part in a training workshop in Maastricht for teachers from the five schools a part of the project. CELL's session discussed discrimination and divisive stereotypes faced by students who are asylum seekers, refugees, and migrants.