KONSTANTINOS KALEMIS & MARITSA EVANGELIA
Migration flows to Europe and their inclusion in National Education Systems of member states: Challenges and perspectives
Europe has an opportunity. The influx of refugees crossing the continent’s borders has elicited a mixed wave of emotions among politicians and citizens – but where some see chaos and a burden for Europe, academics see potential for a great contribution. Education is essential for giving refugee children hope for the future; development goals cannot be achieved without educating those who have been left behind. Education brings long-term societal benefits: aside from increased political engagement, educated children contribute intellectual capital and pursue entrepreneurial opportunities when they grow up, boosting economic growth. For refugees who have already received an education, it is vital to recognize this part of their identity and to nurture their knowledge and intellectual capital. A refugee’s academic training and intellectual interests travel with them wherever they go and follow their flight. When all else is left behind, this knowledge remains within them and continues to form a key part of who they are. If refugees are given the necessary resources, networks, and opportunities, they can reconnect with their true identities in any of the EU countries or elsewhere in the world. Institutional strategies alone are not enough to make the academic world more accessible for refugees. Rather, a sustainable solution can only be achieved through a bottom-up approach, which makes use of the existing motivation found among local academics. This means that countries without a tradition of welcoming migrants, such as Greece, will slowly have to start turning their attention to the adoption of measures for the integration and integration of already established and legal immigrants. On the other hand, the modern trends of migration policy as a social policy within globalized societies come to solve two main problems: firstly, to address demographic developments on the ageing and low fertility of Western populations, which acts as a political argument for immigration, but also to address the rise of far-right parties that ideologically support their base on the existence of immigrants from third countries, a phenomenon that has been experiencing sharpening over the last five years and operating in relation to the argument in favor of migration and puts in a difficult and “uncomfortable” position in the European governments.