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Support for Children of Returning Migrant Families in Latvian Schools

Una Auziņa
University of Latvia, Latvia

Abstract. Every year, approximately 800 families return to live in Latvia. Remigrant (returning migrant) families both include parents who were born in Latvia and spent their childhoods there, or were born abroad. The number of students from remigrating families in Latvian educational institutions is constantly increasing.
Although there is some support for children from remigrating families, it does not necessarily reflect all the needs for a supportive and inclusive learning environment in an educational institution, especially in relation to student well-being, achievement and participation. Studies in Latvia show that if problems identified by the representatives of educational institutions (principals and educators) are more related to the learning content or the knowledge of the students, then the parents emphasize the aspect of attitude more. The parents believe that teachers sometimes lack understanding and tolerance, because the focus is more on learning subjects than building a class team, promoting cooperation or preventing conflicts.
One of the resources to solve the identified problems of the integration process of students with foreign educational experience in schools is not only the collective mutual cooperation of the educational institution, support measures, cooperation with the student’s family, but also targeted work with the student’s classmates and the entire school community. This can contribute to the fact that every student in an educational institution can feel safe, motivated and passionate about eliminating the gaps in their knowledge and being included in the Latvian education system.
The research uses theoretical analysis methods: an analysis of scientific literature and an analysis of international experience. Based on this, criteria for evaluating support will be developed.

Keywords: Children, family, return migrants, school, support

About the author

Una Auziņa is the teacher with more than 25 years of experience as an educator, teaching students of all ages, from primary school to adults. She have 20 years of work experience in an International school, as well as a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and a Master’s degree in educational sciences. Currently does Doctoral studies in education, and her research is on the integration of remigrant children in Latvian schools.

To Be or Not to Be a Great Educator, 2022. Proceedings of ATEE Annual Conference
Riga: University of Latvia Press, 2023. 985 p.
EdL. Daniela
ISBN 978-9934-36-019-0