SIRIUS is a European network of organisations and institutions engaged in the education of students with a migrant background. Its aim is to provide support for the development of education for foreigners in EU countries by conducting research, exchanging experiences and working together in developing and implementing solutions in the education of migrants, which adequately respond to existing needs.
The network facilitates a cross-sector approach, bringing together researchers, policymakers and practitioners in the field of migrant education as well as migrants and refugees themselves. Since the end of 2017, network members are implementing the “SIRIUS 2.0.” project financed by the European Commission.
The Educational Research Institute is member of the network and project partner.
The following activities are conducted within the SIRIUS 2.0 project:
- National and Regional Round Tables for major educational stakeholders in EU countries
- Peer learning activities promoting knowledge transfer by, among others, identifying good practices and stimulating further innovation
- Annual “SIRIUS Watch” reports the flagship research initiative of the network, monitoring and supporting the development and effective implementation of inclusive education policies in the field of inclusive education, with a particular focus on migrant and refugee learners
- European-level policy conferences and policy workshops
- Dissemination activities providing targeted information to multiple audiences
More information on the project and network activities is available at: www.sirius-migrationeducation.org
Second Sirius experts’ meeting national roundtable (NRT) 2019
On September 17, 2019, the Educational Research Institute organised an experts’ meeting: “Needs and skills assessment of foreign children. How can local authorities support the education of foreign children?” – the second NRT (National Roundtable) organised as part of the Sirius 2.0 project.
In the last few years, major cities in Poland have been experiencing substantial increases of the number of migrant pupils in the education system. This constitutes a significant challenge for schools – school heads and teachers. Therefore, during the meeting, experts discussed possible ways in which local authorities support and could support school heads and teachers in foreign students’ education. Special attention was placed on the problem of needs and skills assessment which, during the first NRT in 2018, was identified as one of the key issues for the development of migrant education in Poland. Furthermore, participants discussed other challenges of foreign pupils’ education in the country, including issues relating to the preparation classes, the work of cultural assistants and different mentoring programmes. Progress has been noted in terms of the availability of information materials for parents of migrant children regarding education in Polish schools. The problem of the lack of one platform which could gather various educational, methods and diagnostic materials useful in working with foreign pupil was also raised.
The meeting also served as a forum for discussion and an information exchange among representatives of the local authorities of major cities, representatives of non-governmental organisations, teacher training institutions and psychological-social support centres, as well as teachers, researchers, academics and other experts working in the field of migrant education.
The next National Roundtables of the Sirius project are planned for 2020 and 2021.
First SIRIUS experts’ meeting national roundtable (NRT) 2018
What are the most important aspects to consider when educating foreigners in our country? Does the system of educating migrants in Poland need to be modernized? These were some of the key questions discussed by the participants of the first Sirius 2.0 network meeting.
The meeting required the participation of experts and was attended by representatives of over a dozen public institutions and non-governmental organisations involved in the education of foreigners. The starting point of the discussions was a presentation on the preliminary diagnosis of public policy in the field of the broadly understood area of the education of migrants.
Participants discussed legally regulated solutions, including the provision of additional support in learning the Polish language, adapting examinations for students not fluent in Polish, as well as various organisational changes to facilitate education. Among the cited areas that require monitoring and action were: the lack of developed diagnosis and psychological and pedagogical support for foreign pupils and the lack of a comprehensive offer of support for their parents. There is also no well-developed information for parents about the Polish education system, the nature of education in Poland and the rights and responsibilities of pupils and their parents or guardians. As a result, certain difficulties arise in contacts between school administrators and parents already at the school enrolment stage.
The Sirius 2.0 project will be implemented in Poland in line with a "round table" formula, which encourages the participation of not only decision-makers or educators, but also of migrants themselves. The first stage of the project is an attempt to identify the most important problems and aspects of educating foreigners in our country.
This was the first of four such meetings planned for 2018-2021 period.
Project duration: 2017-2021
- Report “Sirius Watch 2018”: Role of non-formal education in migrant children’s inclusion: links with schools.| download
- National and Regional Round Tables 2018” Comparative Report | download
- Report “Sirius Watch 2019. Mapping prior learning of newly arrived migrant pupils in Europe” | download
“National and Regional Round Tables 2019” Comparative Report | download
- Olga Wasilewska – expert, team leader
- Agata Gajewska-Dyszkiewicz – expert
- Izabela Przybysz - expert
- Belgium: Migration Policy Group (MPG) – lead partner
- Bulgaria: Multi Kulti Collective
- Croatia: Forum for Freedom in Education (FFE)
- Estonia: PRAXIS Center for Policy Studies
- Germany: European Forum for Migration Studies (EFMS)
- Greece: Hellenic Open University (HOU), University of Western Macedonia (UoWM)
- Ireland: Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), New Communities Partnership (NCP)
- Lithuania: Public Policy and Management Institute (PPMI)
- Netherlands: Risbo
- Norway: Ostfold University College (HIOF)
- Poland: Educational Research Institute (IBE)
- Portugal: High Commissioner for Migration (ACM), University of Porto (CIIE)
- Slovenia: Educational Research Institute (ERI)
- Spain: Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (UAB)
- UK: Fryshuset African & Caribbean diversity Leeds Beckett University