Contemporary Challenges and Risks
Edited by Lourdes Gaitán, Yannis Pechtelidis, Catarina Tomás and Natália Fernandes
Chapter 13: Language education policy discourses on refugee children: evidence from the Greek context
The recent arrival of new immigrants has created a new reality of a pluralistic mosaic in Greek society, which was until then ostensibly ‘homogeneous’ both linguistically and culturally. Against this backdrop, in the present chapter, the authors critically discourse-analyse the two reports published by the Scientific Committee for the Support of Refugee Children (supervised by the Greek Ministry of Education), focusing on issues of language education policy, in order to explore, from a critical lens, the language education proposed for refugee children as well as the constructions of childhood emerging from policy discourses. Policy texts are not simply texts, but also produce particular forms of knowledge about their topic of interest. From the analysis of the two reports, it is evident that a top-down approach is adopted, as the refugees’ own concerns and perspectives remain invisible, leaving no room for their emancipation and the hearing of their own voices.
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