The conference “Esperienze e proposte per l’apprendimento dell’Italiano L2 nelle classi multilingue e multiculturali” held in Castellammare del Golfo on 30 may 2018 brought together 80 participants to discuss experiences and proposals on ways to improve education for newcomers, with a focus on teaching Italian as a second language in a multilingual and multicultural context.

In particular, the outcomes and deliverables (online language courses) of the project “Una lingua per il lavoro” carried out with financial support from the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF 2014-2020) were presented. Through this project, Trapani’s Adult Learning Center joined forces with local partners (Istituto Comprensivo S. Bagolino and two associations), to develop specialized language training courses associated with introductory vocational training modules, building upon activities initiated in 2016-17 with support from Education International and IRASE-UIL Scuola. 

Representatives from the university Ca’ Foscari of Venezia and the University of Palermo confronted their experiences with regards to reaching out to female migrants and developing language training modules in migrants’ mother tongues. 

Sonia Grigt, author of “The Journey of Hope: Education for refugee and unaccompanied children in Italy”, presented the outcomes and recommendations formulated by Education International on refugees’ education both at national and European levels, building upon the activities carried out with affiliates throughout Europe and Italy since 2016. She insisted in particular on the different aspects of inclusion in education and measures needed beyond intensive language courses, the necessity to coordinate amongst the various concerned actors in the field (local authorities, accommodation centres, etc.), to disseminate and sistematise good practices developed locally and finally, to design sustainable and predictable funding mechanisms for schools and educational institutions in order to be able to develop comprehensive and long-term integration strategies. Copies of the EI report were handed over to key stakeholders participating in the event.