SIRIUS is an ambitious network that effectively wishes to transform the policy implementation on migration and education through the EU. A powerful communication strategy is required to achieve that.
As a collaborative partner in the network, MPG has agreed to take on the role of communications officer for SIRIUS. MPG is experienced in working with networks of experts and practitioners to create new agendas and mobilise stakeholders at national and EU level. In the role of SIRIUS Communications Officer, MPG will prepare the ground to disseminate SIRIUS’ contributions in Brussels and will help to make the work of the network more targeted and policy relevant. SIRIUS has the aim to be a policy network involving academics, governments, and civil society. The network already engages a few constituencies (universities, governments, think-tanks) and offers a window into the EU policy process through its interaction with DG Education and Culture. However, other constituencies—such as education/migration stakeholders and responsible ministries—are not yet engaged by SIRIUS, nor are grassroots stakeholders. MPG will help SIRIUS to reach out to and mobilise migration, education, and grassroots organisations on migrant education. Greater engagement of a wide range of stakeholders is essential to make SIRIUS a policy network that bridges the gap between research and policy and proposes solutions that respond to the realities faced by migrant youth.
On education, MPG’s work started with proposing and monitoring EU standards to fight various forms of discrimination in education and vocational training. In recent years, MPG facilitated EU exchange of good practice on the education and training of immigrant pupils, through the Commission’s Handbook on Integration and Website on Integration (www.integration.eu). MPG is also developing and analysing indicators of integration policies and the education outcomes of immigrant pupils. In 2010, its Migrant Integration Policy Index (www.mipex.eu) mapped the targeted policies for immigrant pupils in all EU Member States, Norway, Switzerland, Canada, and the United States. See also our publication What can international comparisons of outcomes and policies tell us about ‘good practices’ of migrant education?
Background on SIRIUS
SIRIUS is a European Policy Network on the education of children and young people with a migrant background. This project will run over a 3 year period (2012-2014) and it is funded by the Lifelong Learning Programme of the European Commission. During this period, the partners of this network - research centres, universities, associations and civil society organisations, public entities and consortiums - will face the challenge of improving educational measures addressed to migrant students within the frame of the EU, ensuring that children and young people form migrant backgrounds or minorities could raise their educational standards and outcomes at least at the same level than those from National background or belonging to majority groups. The aim of this network is to update the data of this thematic issue, to integrate all the studies and reports on that and to achieve a major influence of this research on European, National and local educational policies. The early school leaving, the schooling projects, as well as the educational support projects outside the school, will be some of the issues where the project will focus on through three work packages: