Wednesday, 07 December 2022
A refugee education support hub has been launched by experts at the University of Nottingham.
The Hub for European Refugee Education (HERE) brings together academic and stakeholder expertise of policies and practices for integrating children, young people and adults with refugee backgrounds through education, in order to help them to be able to live lives of dignity and value in their new societies.
HERE forms a bridge between academics, policymakers, practitioners, refugee communities and other stakeholders in order to support societies across Europe to provide a socially just inclusion of refugee and people seeking asylum in, and through, education.
The Hub has been set up in response to the increasing number of child refugees in Europe – according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, at the end of 2021, of the 89.3 million forcibly displaced people, an estimated 36.5 million (41 per cent) were children below 18 years of age. In 2016, Save the Children noted that there were now more child refugees in Europe than at any point since the Second World War.
Dr Joanna McIntyre, Professor of Education at the University of Nottingham and Founder of HERE, said: "The situation across Europe concerning forced migration is often described as a crisis – but we need to challenge that depiction and move refugee education on from crisis response."
The need for some people to seek sanctuary has been happening for years and is still ongoing. It is crucial that we accept that unless the causes of forced migration are eradicated then we will need sustainable models of inclusive education, so that we can focus on supporting young people who have been displaced, into education and help them to make a positive contribution to the societies they are joining.
Professor McIntyre continued: "Currently, children and young people can be out of education for far too long as they wait to be allocated to a school or college. They are missing out on vital time where they could be getting accustomed to their new environment and resuming their education. The sooner they can do this, the better chances they have of contributing to the social and economic life of their new context and shaping a better world for all.”
Catherine Gladwell, Chief Executive at Refugee Education UK, said: "Refugee children and young people tell us that education is the key to unlocking their futures. Yet, so often they wait months to get a school place after arriving in Europe, and, when they do, schools struggle to know how to support them to thrive."
This network provides a critical resource for sharing knowledge and evidence about what works in education for refugee learners - so that we can all get better at equipping them with the education they need to build more hopeful futures.
The academics aim for HERE to be a go-to place for expertise providing a facilitated flow of information about what is known about refugee education through early childhood, formal schooling, non-formal education, and steps towards lifelong learning through formal and non-formal education and training.
The website features a curated, searchable database of academic and non-academic resources, as well as government and NGO reports, to support teachers, schools, local authorities and international governments, with 700 new resources being added to date and more each week.
The HERE Hub Network also offers online and offline activities to exchange knowledge and develop research and practice in the field.
With thanks to photographer, Salar Keramat.
More information is available from Professor Joanna McIntyre in the School of Education at the University of Nottingham at firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors:
About the University of Nottingham
Ranked 32 in Europe and 16th in the UK by the QS World University Rankings: Europe 2024, the University of Nottingham is a founding member of the Russell Group of research-intensive universities. Studying at the University of Nottingham is a life-changing experience, and we pride ourselves on unlocking the potential of our students. We have a pioneering spirit, expressed in the vision of our founder Sir Jesse Boot, which has seen us lead the way in establishing campuses in China and Malaysia - part of a globally connected network of education, research and industrial engagement.
Nottingham was crowned Sports University of the Year by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024 – the third time it has been given the honour since 2018 – and by the Daily Mail University Guide 2024.
The university is among the best universities in the UK for the strength of our research, positioned seventh for research power in the UK according to REF 2021. The birthplace of discoveries such as MRI and ibuprofen, our innovations transform lives and tackle global problems such as sustainable food supplies, ending modern slavery, developing greener transport, and reducing reliance on fossil fuels.
The university is a major employer and industry partner - locally and globally - and our graduates are the second most targeted by the UK's top employers, according to The Graduate Market in 2022 report by High Fliers Research.
We lead the Universities for Nottingham initiative, in partnership with Nottingham Trent University, a pioneering collaboration between the city’s two world-class institutions to improve levels of prosperity, opportunity, sustainability, health and wellbeing for residents in the city and region we are proud to call home.