Mette Buchardt Education Podcast Multiculturalism

Podcast: Migrant Children in the Nordics: A Conversation on Schooling

Primary school children of different ethnicities sitting in a classroom beside each other. Smiling, looking at the board.
The interplay between schooling, religion, and political decision-making at the local and national level is complex. Listen to Mette Buchardt providing a historical overview of how all these issues weave together from 1950 to today. Photo: Yadid Levy, Norden.org (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0).

In current times, schools are often hot spots for education policy initiatives driven by party politics. Encounters between the majority ethnic group and newcomer children can be exaggerated or underplayed depending on the political context, and it can be a highly contested area.

In this podcast, the head of Aalborg University’s Centre for Education Policy Research, Mette Buchardt, gives a historical overview of developments in Denmark in comparison with the other Nordic countries from the 1950s until today. In so doing, the conversation necessarily covers wider issues, such as, the division between state and church; the use of schooling in molding citizens of the (Nordic) welfare state; and that persistent question: how to create the same provision for all when children have varying needs?

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