Concept, Policy and Implementation
Edited by Ricard Zapata-Barrero
Chapter 10: Measuring outcomes: youth and interculturalism in the classroom
Growing diversity in Western democracies has raised important concerns about the best ways in which to ensure both social cohesion and social integration. How does the native population learn to accept growing diversity and how do we ensure that newcomers are not marginalized culturally, economically or politically? The response to this question has varied over time, from assimilationist policies to integrationist, multicultural and intercultural approaches. Interculturalism has increasingly become the preference among policy makers within many European countries, especially at the local level, as well as in the province of Québec in Canada. Intercultural policies, according to the Council of Europe, rest on three pillars: (1) honest communication and continuous debate about the realities of migration and diversity, (2) the diversification of public bodies, and (3) cultural competence within organizations (Council of Europe, 2013). In this chapter, we consider interculturalism in the school environment. How is social diversity experienced in schools and what is its impact on social cohesion? Are there differences between cities? And what are the implications of this for intercultural policies?
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