The Integration of refugee children in the German education system with the help of an Intercultural Training

Masterarbeit, 2019

48 Seiten



1. Introduction

2. Theoretical background of the integration of refugees into the German education system
2.1 Refugees
2.2 German education system and refugees
2.2.1 German education system
2.2.2 Refugees in the German education system
2.3 Refugees’ problems
2.3.1 General problems for refugees in the host country
2.3.2 Problems for refugees in the education system
2.4 Methods of resolution
2.5 Intercultural Training
2.5.1 Intercultural communication
2.5.2 Intercultural Training
2.6 Conclusion

3. Objectives of the study

4. Methodology
4.1 Online questionnaires
4.1.1 Study setting and participants
4.1.2 Results of the questionnaires
4.2 Needs analysis
4.3 Training materials
4.3.1 Letter to the teacher
4.3.2 Session 1: Change in perspective
4.3.3 Session 2: Raising awareness on diversity
4.3.4 Session 3: Language and culture
4.3.5 Session 4: Knowledge about different cultures

5. Discussion

6. Conclusion

7. Bibliography

8. Appendices: Training material


This dissertation presents the background and context to the process whereby very large numbers of child refugees are being taught in German schools today. It does this in order to identify and specify the various issues this movement of non-native young people into the German educational system has raised, in terms of how to integrate them into the existing system and culture. By delineating the problems and difficulties involved, it sets out the need to develop training materials that can support such refugee children and effectively promote their integration into the German school system and society and further personal development. In order to get the needed data, an online questionnaire focusing on the teacher’s perspective was designed. It was found that the most prominent issues refugees face are the language and therefore following the classes, adapting to the German education system and being exposed to stereotypes and prejudices. It goes on to present materials designed to facilitate this process, this being a key objective of this study. In the context of this study, the training material could not be tested, but it in this way the dissertation emphasises that intercultural training can be a great help in the integration of refugees, whether they are young children or adults.

1. Introduction

Since the migrant crisis began in 2015, over three million refugees have travelled across the Mediterranean Sea or overland to Europe in search of a new and safe home. They are fleeing violence against civilians, and severe violations of human rights and international laws (UNO 2018). Syria, one of the most problematic home countries for refugees, generated 6.7 million fugitives (UHNCR 2019), as war crimes and human rights abuses are common. The Assad regime has systematically cut medical and food supplies to the population. Terrorist and bomb attacks on residential areas are not uncommon. Moreover, air raids by the USA, Russia and Turkey threaten the lives of millions of civilians in the country. ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) has sought to spread their ideology, uses terrorist attacks, abductions and public torture to achieve their goal of creating a new state, forcing millions of people to flee their home countries. According to UNHCR over 2.1 million people were displaced inside Iraq, as of April 2018 (UNHCR 2018). Other travelled from south and east Europe, the greater Middle East and Africa.

The European Union has had to find a solution to handling so many incoming people and to prevent the many deaths the flight over the Mediterranean Sea continues to cause. The boats the refugees take to reach Europe are usually overcrowded and many have sunk. For these reasons, in 2015 the European Commission worked out the 10-point plan to handle the crisis, which included the reinforcement of the Joint Operations in the Mediterranean; systematic efforts to catch and destroy smuggle operations; regular meetings between EUROPOL, FRONTEX, EASO and EUROJUST; member states fingerprinting every migrant; an option for an emergency relocation mechanism; an EU wide voluntary pilot project on resettlement; a rapid return program for irregular migrants; engagement with countries surrounding Libya; and the deployment of an Immigration Liaison Officers in key third countries (European Commission 2015). A year later, they reformed the Common European Asylum System and created measures for a safer and more manageable means of legal migration to Europe.

With over one million refugees arriving in Germany, it is the country that has welcomed the most significant number of fleeing migrants in Europe. They have struggled to find space to accommodate all of these people, and as the numbers of asylum applications has risen significantly, the administrative system has been unable to keep up. Long queues in front of the concerned buildings and longer processing times have been the result. Therefore, Germany has had to reinforce controls on refugees and increase security measures, as well as employing more personnel to accelerate asylum procedures. The government has recently changed asylum law twice to assure a safer, better and faster integration of refugees into German society. In 2015 the changes were more focused on budgets, deportations, the distribution of refugees, their accommodation and integration measures (Deutscher Bundestag 2016). In 2016 the improved laws were, among other things, about the reunification of families; providing more details about resident status; and the reinforcement of security measures in refugee communities (Deutscher Bundestag 2016). Apart from political and administrative challenges, Germany has also struggled with problems on the social and societal level. The political party AfD and the political movement PEGIDA (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the Occident) have actively protested and proceeded against the integration of refugees in German society. During the parliamentary elections in 2017, the AfD campaigned to ban family reunification of refugees and to cancel social benefits for them, while the PEGIDA continues to demonstrate every Monday against what they claim to be the Islamisation of the occident.

Germany is also well-known for its welcoming culture (Willkommenskultur), as demonstrated by the many volunteers who have helped refugees to learn German, access employment or apprenticeships, find accommodation and create a platform for dialogue between refugees and Germans, especially regarding the refugees’ stories. Even though these refugees have received help from all sides and were welcomed, the issues they face cannot be avoided. The biggest issue is the uncertainty of their asylum status, which makes integration in society difficult, as they are not allowed to work or to leave the city if their status is not clear. Another problem refugees face is learning the German language. Participation in society remains difficult for them without basic communication skills. Most refugees who have arrived in Germany over the last four years have been of school-age, which raises the questions of these children’s integration not only in society but specifically in the education system, as they spend a significant amount of time at school. As education is compulsory in Germany, all refugees of school-age are obliged to attend, even if their asylum status is unclear. Refugee children participate in so-called Willkommensklassen (welcoming classes), where they spend between one and two years learning German and about how German political and health care systems work.

Refugee children, having an uncertain asylum status, not knowing if they will have to return to their home country and at the same time being at school and having to integrate in order to fit in, go through difficult times. Education is used as a tool to integrate refugee children into German society and the labour market. A growing body of literature recognises the importance of intercultural communication and training for people who enter a new country. However, there is still a lack of literature on intercultural communication and training in relation to the integration of refugees. For this reason, this paper presents training material to help refugees to master the challenges of everyday school life in Germany.

This paper begins with the theoretical context of refugees, the German education system and intercultural communication and training. It will then go on to the methodology used to carry out the research and its results. The next section will describe the design of the training material, while the limitations and implications of this study are discussed in the section that follows.

2. Literature Review

2.1 Refugees

To begin with, the term migration needs to be clarified. Migration is spatial mobility undertaken by people in order to relocate their centre of life. There are two kinds of migration; emigration, which means leaving one’s home country, and immigration, which is moving to a country which one does not originate from (Treibel 2008). Those who migrate are not a homogenous group; they differ in age, gender, provenance and level of education. Moreover, migration can be voluntary or forced (Kalter 2006).

In the case of this work, the relevant term is ‘refugee’. According to Article 1 of the Geneva Convention, all people who find themselves outside of their home country with a ‘well- founded fear of persecution (risk of harm being an insufficient reason in the absence of discriminatory persecution)’, and a ‘incapacity to enjoy the protection of one's state from the persecution feared’, are categorized as refugees (UNHCR 1951: Article 1).

Since 2010 many conflicts and civil wars have arisen around the world, and millions of people have escaped their homes, hoping for a better life in a new country. Almost one million refugees migrated to Germany between 2015 and 2018. In 2016, 722.370 asylum applications were received, of which 266.250 (36.9%) were Syrians, 127.012 (17.6%) from Afghans and 96.116 from Iraqis. The age distribution in 2016 shows that 36.2% of asylum seekers were underaged, and in 2017, they constituted 45% (BAMF 2019). This shows that there is a vital need to support and help these children with integration into German society and its educational system. It is important to clarify here that the cited numbers only represent the number of asylum applications and does not reflect the number of people receiving the status as a refugee.

At their arrival, the refugees must register immediately for the government to know of their presence and in order to receive a residency permit. The next step is the initial allocation to the closest host organisation. Afterwards, the refugees can apply for asylum on paper. This application is examined to find the EU-country deemed responsible for each asylum seeker and therefore to decide which legislation will be applied. The last step before the federal office decides on the asylum application is a personal interview with the applicant. An interpreter is provided, and the topics of reasons for flight, potential contradictions and evidence are discussed (BAMF 2019). The application can either be rejected, which takes away the status of refugee, or accepted for four different reasons: recognition of entitlement to asylum (Art 16a Abs. 1 GG); recognition of refugee protection (§3 Abs. 1 AsylG); recognition of subsidiary protection (§4 Abs. 1 AsylG); and determination of the deportation prohibition (§60 Abs. 5 AufenthG). Only after this decision has been made can people arriving in Germany be considered as refugees. As education is compulsory in Germany, asylum seekers of school-age must attend school, even if their asylum status has not been approved at this point. Therefore, a child might go to a school but have to leave it if the asylum application is subsequently rejected.

2.2 German education system and refugees

2.2.1 German education system

In Germany, due to cultural sovereignty, the school system varies from one federal state to another. It differs in the length of primary and secondary education and school types. Nonetheless, the basic structure of the education system, such as the education sectors, the educational qualifications and the possibility of transitioning between the sectors are the same all over the country. In Germany, education is compulsory, starting at the age of seven and finishing at eighteen. Additionally, depending on the federal state, compulsory schooling varies between nine and ten years. The general education system consist of five sectors: the elementary sector (nursery, kindergarten, day care, preschool); the primary sector (elementary school: classes 1-4 or 1-6, depending on the federal state); the secondary sector I (Mittelschule1, Realschule2, Gymnasium3 ); the secondary sector II (vocational school, technical college, higher vocational school); and tertiary sector (university, advanced technical college, adult education). The school types in the secondary sector I are distinguished by their curriculum, level of difficulty and school-leaving qualifications. Schools called comprehensive schools, which combine Mittel and/or Realschule, are common. Furthermore, depending on the certification one receives, it is possible to move up to the secondary sector II, at which level one can achieve the Abitur, enabling entry into the tertiary sector (BPB 2013).

2.2.2 Refugees in the German education system

Research emphasises that education is an essential factor in the process of integrating refugees and migrant children into the host country (Otto, Migas, Austermann, Bos 2016). In Germany, refugee children at elementary school age participate immediately in regular classes, and if a qualified teacher is available, they receive an additional language course or instructor (Becker 2011). What happens if there are no qualified teachers available and how this problem is taken care of, is not discussed in Becker’s article. Refugees who are of secondary school age, on the other hand, start with a one to two-year-long preparatory class, before being integrated into regular school classes (Timm 2016; Panagiotopoulou & Rosen 2018). Research has shown that participating in the education system is an essential aspect of the integration of refugees and migrants into the host country (Von Ludovica, Liebau, Weinhardt 2017; Becker 2011). Attendance in a day-care centre or at school is the platform for integration, as it involves learning the language of the host country, and acquiring cultural knowledge and experiences with pedagogical personnel, German-speaking children or their parents (Von Ludovica et al. 2017).

The other side of the German school system is the result-oriented emphasis of education, which is not necessarily suitable for immigrated people (Auernheimer 2005). The focus is more on the economic aspect, when it would be more helpful to use a multicultural approach on education ‘dominated by dialogue [...] [and] focus[ing] on understanding culture’ (Timm 2016: 4). According to Wößmann (2016), refugee children must be integrated into the education system as quickly as possible, as it is the tool for successful social integration. However, the integration can only be regarded as such if inclusion into the labour market has been successful.

The biggest issue in the German educational system is the segregation that takes place after pupils leave the primary sector. Teachers often do not have the tools to support the weaker students in order to establish equal opportunities for all pupils in their aim to enter the higher secondary sector (Auernheimer 2005). Bank (2012) states that the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) sees the educational system as a capable sub-system of the economy, which uses the students as human capital, in a way that is vital for public welfare. Due to bad PISA results, the OECD influence has expanded, which has led to significant policy changes that have pushed the German education system into being more result-oriented. According to Paiva Lareiro, 23% of refugees go to Hauptschulen and 22% on Mittleschulen, which are both school types where lessons are strongly oriented towards job- related content and activities.

2.3 Refugees’ problems

2.3.1 General problems for refugees in the host country

In this section, the focus will be on the difficulties refugees face when arriving in a host country. According to Fazel et al. (2016), over 90% of refugees require mental health care after they arrive in a host country. The forced displacement, loss of a family members, humiliation, persecution, torture or imprisonment that they are likely to have experienced often have adverse effects on such people (Lindert; Carta; Schäfer; Mollica 2016). These experiences can cause post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety disorders, prolonged grief disorder and a wide range of cognitive, emotional, social, physical and behavioural problems (Derluyn & Broekaert 2007; Bäärnhielm 2016; Rousseau 2017). Having to adapt to a new cultural context and to learn a new language adds even more stress to the refugee’s everyday life (Timm 2016). Even though the refugees have access to the health care system according to the law (Asylbewerberleistungsgesetz AsylbLG), cultural differences, language and bureaucratic barriers can prevent smooth access to the health care system (Pavli & Maltezou 2017).

Additionally, the refugees have to deal with comprehension problems, as they do not speak German when arriving in the country. Migration studies have shown that second- language acquisition plays an important part when it comes to integration in a new culture (Dustman & Glitz 2011; Borjas 2014). Learning the language of the host country continues to be the main hurdle to teaching and social inclusion (Timm 2016). In Germany, the government pays integration and language courses for asylum seekers who are likely to receive a residence permit (BAMF 2019). According to Korntheuer (2016), one of the main issues that slow down language acquisition is that refugees do not have enough contact with people from the host country. Language is promoted as the essential skill for becoming a fully integrated member of German society and its labour market (Heinemann 2017; Rhode & Stitteneder 2018). Nonetheless, the issue here is that, if language competence is not at the level of a ‘nativespeaker’, refugees might face the degradation of their competencies in general, as people do not take others with insufficient language skills seriously (Dirim 2010) and such individuals are very unlikely to be accepted as a full member of society (Heinemann 2017). Shakespeare-Finch and Wickham (2009) state that language and communication are part of the acculturation difficulties, as well as making social acquaintances and acquiring knowledge of the law. The latter is a problematic subject for refugees, as the legal systems work differently from their home country, and they might have problems in adapting to it. The lack of language proficiency makes things more difficult for the refugees in their everyday life too: for example, for grocery shopping or going to the doctors (Shakespare-Finch & Wickham 2009; Green 2017; Schilling, Rauscher, Menzel, Reichenauer, Müller-Schilling, Schmid, Selgrad 2017).

Even though the German population has been mostly welcoming towards refugees (Liebe, Meyerhoff, Kroesen, Chorus, Glenke 2018), certain groups and political parties have demonstrated antipathy to refugees taking up residence in Germany. Some German citizens are afraid that refugees will take their jobs and therefore the PEGIDA (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the Occident) organises regular demonstrations in Dresden to protest against the refugees’ presence in Germany (Martin 2015). Some acts of thievery and sexual harassment on New Year’s Eve 2016 in Cologne reinforced the negative reputation some people had of refugees (von Hermanni & Neumann 2019). The latter found themselves in a vulnerable position where right-wing organisations took advantage of this situation and attacked refugees in their accommodation. Cases of refugee homes being vandalised or set on fire have made headlines; therefore, the state has had to organise protection for the groups concerned (Ewing 2015).

2.3.2 Problems for refugees in the education system

Migrants and refugees in Germany are at a disadvantage in the school system. Studies showed that they generally achieve less good grades than peers without an immigration background (Becker 2011). The reason for this seems to be that refugee parents do not seize the offers for pre-school and other preparatory workshops for their children. These pupils attend Mittelschule and those for special education more often than children without a migration background (Becker 2011). Refugees being at a disadvantage is no surprise when one considers that the German educational system emphasises the economic dimension (Timm 2016; de Paiva Lareiro 2019). Refugees relatively short duration of stay in Germany inevitably results in a relatively lower level of language competence, so that refugee children have a less favourable starting point than their peers. This teaching philosophy leaves no time or opportunity for a pupil who cannot follow the curriculum at the level of difficulty and speed at which it is delivered (Auernheimer 2006). An option that is not considered by Timm is Waldorf schools, whose aim is to teach pupils regardless of their social background, ability and vocation, and to provide an education based on encouragement and support (Nordlund 2013). Moreover, even if this teaching method still represents the minority in Germany, their way of educating might be considered as a new approach to integrating refugees and migrants, as it puts the focus on self-development, school community, creativity, internationality and learning for life (Ulrich 2015). Wagenschein (1989) argues that the Waldorf system schools the child without the damaging performance pressure, aiming to develop a positive relationship to learning. Refugees must already deal with their integration into German society, so not being exposed to the competitiveness of the classic German education system at the same time is a great advantage. The negative aspects of Waldorf education, on the other hand, are the potential for chaos, inadequate teacher training and excessive emphasis on challenging students, unworldliness and conflict avoidance (Ulrich 2015). Prange (2000) furthermore states that the teaching philosophy of Waldorf schools suppresses students’ and teachers’ reflections and establishes a premodern, archaic self-awareness.

Another significant aspect of issues within the school system is that it is very likely that refugee children will not be familiar with the German education system and will not know how to move and act within it. Refugee children might have never been to school, in which case they will not understand what the concept of school involves: for example, the teacher-pupil relationship; the importance of time management; and the significance of homework and tests (Mitchell 2015).

Another issue is that Germany uses a monolingual approach to educate the younger generations (Kiel, Syring & Weiss 2017). Koehler (2018) points out that teachers in Germany still hold on to the ‘German only’ strategy in their classrooms. According to research, this has advantages, in terms of refugees learning the host language quicker, as hearing the language regularly helps in building vocabulary (Kiel, Syring & Weiss 2017), but with the cost of not being able to follow the teaching content. According to the SIRIUS network4, the inclusion of the first language of these children (Huddleston & Wolffhardt 2016: 45), therefore giving importance to their mother tongue (Siarova & Essomba 2014: 3), has benefits for the learning process of the second language. Stereotypes can also influence the acquisition of new vocabulary, as they can inhibit the learning process of refugees exposed to them. These stereotypes are towards the different family language they speak, due to their migration background (Sander, Ohle, McElvany, Zanner & Hannover 2017). Stereotypes also influence school performances in a negative way (Wasserberg 2014), as the persons concerned tend to suffer from a loss in confidence and trust in the supposedly safe and respectful environment the classroom should be. A different approach concerning cultural differences is Diefenbach’s (2011) ‘Culture deficit theory’, through which he explains that refugees bring a basic personality with them that is shaped by their cultural origin. This often includes more traditional perspectives towards education and learning and is accompanied by low levels of interest, effort and motivation in school. As refugees come from a different cultural background, they do not carry the behaviour, knowledge or skills that German, non-migrant children of the same age group and state of development have. This represents a disadvantage for the migrants and refugees, as this skill set is seen as an essential prerequisite for every pupil (Diefenbach 2011).

2.4 Methods of resolution

Schools should provide overall support for their refugee students (Mitchell 2015). According to Timm (2016), educational institutions have the responsibility to support their students in their attempts to learn the process by promoting emotional maturity. Such an approach requires ‘multifunctional teams consisting of teachers, social workers, student counsellors and psychologists’ (Timm 2016: 3). It would cover all the problematic issues discussed in the previous section and therefore involve building a safe and trustful environment where refugees have enough confidence in their teachers to ask them for help and support. To facilitate the social interaction of refugees in everyday school life, guidelines exist that aim to ensure that educational institutions are prepared for their arrival (Mitchell 2015). First, existing students should be supported from the outset in engaging critically with the issues of flight and the background of refugees, to raise awareness and encourage sensitive interaction with refugees. Additionally, the anti-bullying policies and practices of each school should be revised and revisited with the staff and pupils (Mitchell 2015). It must be noted that schools are not necessarily informed in advance that they will have refugee children coming to their facility, and therefore preparation in advance is not always possible. Once the refugees arrive in the school, more measures to facilitate their integration can be undertaken, but a certain degree of readiness is important. Generally, all students and teachers have to be aware of assumptions and try to build a resilient and safe environment for the refugees. Moreover, it is crucial to give the teachers the right training in dealing with traumatised children, who might never have visited a school before (Mitchell 2015).

Moreover, the communication problems between teachers, pupils and their parents need to be taken care of with the help of translators (Braun, Weiß, Kiel 2018). Even though the authors consider many aspects of the development of intercultural schools, the connection between refugees and non-migrant classmates is not considered. As the refugee children will spend most of their weekdays in school and therefore with their classmates, it is crucial that their relationship and understanding of each other is as developed as possible. An example of how teachers can help refugees in their everyday school-life is provided an article entitled Supporting refugee children who arrive in your schools in the British Journal of School Nursing (Mitchell 2015), which advises on the behaviour teachers should adapt towards refugee children and their parents — informing themselves about the background of the refugee children to have a better understanding of their situation, as well as providing information to refugee children and their parents in a sensitive way, as they are likely to have experienced a different standard and system of education. Another necessity is, therefore, to analyse what the refugee children need when arriving at school, which, according to Mitchell, includes the development of emotional competence and a stable and understanding environment. Even though this article is aimed at the British education system, it can be adapted and applied to the German system. The British Council suggests giving the children more time to adapt to the new host country and educational system, as well as including their parents in order to build mutual respect. Moreover, they suggest undertaking extracurricular activities with the children: for example, going to the opera or concerts, as music can have a calming effect on traumatised refugees (British Council).

Developing a school system which puts more emphasis on the intercultural aspects of education, can, therefore, be a long-term solution (Kiel; Syring & Weiss 2017). The main reason for focusing on this issue is the arrival of 722.370 refugees in Germany over the year prior to the writing of this dissertation, from which 36.2% are of school-age (BAMF 2019). Opening up schools to interculturality means a changed view and action of the institution about the increasing cultural diversity, both internally and externally. Changes must be made at the personal, didactic-curricular, social and structural levels (Karaka§oglu 2013). There are specific ways to follow to become an intercultural school. First, changes to staff level are required, as the teachers should receive intercultural training in order to be well prepared for a diverse student body. Changes on the didactic-curricular level involves changes in the teaching and syllabus, which would emphasise respect, openness, diversity and awareness. Changes at the social level means involving the parents of these children more, in order to counteract educational disadvantage. The last area of necessary change is the structural one, where the schools must cooperate more with external players to generate more resources- for example, materials, rooms and trainers for workshops (Braun et al. 2018). An opening of the school to the external environment involves networking with organisations that specialise in this area. There should be an opportunity for pupils to get counselling in different areas. Additionally, teachers need to be supported and trained to become experts in this field. Schools must exemplify the concept of openness, tolerance and mutual respect (Braun et al. 2018).

2.5 Intercultural training

2.5.1 Intercultural communication

In order to understand what intercultural communication is, the concepts of culture and communication must be clarified first. Several definitions of the term culture exist, one of them from Hofstede (1986) who claims that culture is shared programming of the mind which differentiates the constituents of human groups, one from another. Edward, Burnett and Tylor (1971) are more specific in their definition that culture is a set of knowledge, laws, morals, beliefs, art and customs that people share. Other scholars like Samoucer (1998) have similar definitions of the concept of culture, arguing that it is a deposit of knowledge, experiences, beliefs, values and actions. Compared to the field of cultural studies, the field of intercultural communication is relatively new and refers to the communication process between people from two different cultures (Chen & Starosta 1998). Lustig and Koester (2007: 46) give a more precise definition by stating that ‘intercultural communication is a symbolic, interpretive, transactional, contextual process, in which people from different cultures create shared meanings’. Rogers and Steinfatt (1999) state that intercultural communication is an exchange of information between people or groups who differ in terms of national culture, ethnicity, age or gender, which can affect their interaction. Intercultural communication researches the interaction of different cultures or groups with each other (Scollon & Scollon 1995). According to Martin and Nakayama (2011), culture is a set of shared perceptions, values and feelings; and a dynamic, heterogenous concept that changes and can lead to conflicts among different people. The focus here is communication practices, which function as distinctive features of culture and influence the means of communicating (Chen 2017). Additionally, the author states that understanding how cultural similarities and differences are perceived and how they affect people and communication between and among people, can affect the interaction of people from different cultural backgrounds in a positive way. The Council of Europe uses the term intercultural dialogue and describes it as an essential tool for every interaction that people from different ethnic, cultural, religious and linguistic background can have. This exchange should be based on tolerance, respect and openness, to enable peaceful working and living circumstances for all (Council of Europe 2008).


1 Mittelschule guarantees pupils a wide range of pedagogical elements in their educational offerings, either individually or in groups. The Mittelschule comprises grades 5 to 9 or 5 to 10. The lessons are strongly geared to job-related content.

2 The Realschule comprises grades 5 to 10. Its educational offer is aimed at young people who are interested in theoretical questions and at the same time have practical skills and inclinations. It provides general education and vocational preparation. The Realschule ends with a final examination and awards the Realschulabschluss, an intermediate school leaving certificate. At the Realschule there are three training directions, in the so-called compulsory elective subject groups. From grade 7 onwards, they set different focal points in the range of courses on offer.

3 The Bavarian Gymnasium leads to the general university entrance qualification and provides a broad, in-depth general education and prepares students for university studies as well as for demanding vocational training. The Gymnasium comprises grades 5 to 12.

4 SIRIUS - Policy Network on Migrant Education. Their goal is to establish a universal right to education and to eradicate discrimination at all levels. Sirius is a membership-based organisation promoting the overall inclusion of children and young people with migrant background by promoting the right to universal education.

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The Integration of refugee children in the German education system with the help of an Intercultural Training
University of Sheffield
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integration, german, intercultural, training
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Alexine Zapf (Autor:in), 2019, The Integration of refugee children in the German education system with the help of an Intercultural Training, München, GRIN Verlag,


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