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Post-enlargment MIgration, Integration and Education: Polish Immigrants in Scotland (Polish immigrants)
Start date: Apr 1, 2008, End date: Jun 30, 2010 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The project is tailored in order for researcher to develop a postdoctoral research agenda as well as to get more experience in multidisciplinary migration research. The host organisation will provide for the research fellow the opportunity to be trained in the topic of the education and language policy as well as human capital and quantitative research methods which is very much related with the research proposal and fellow interests. The research is designed to find out more about the recently arrived Polish population in Scotland, and in particular to explore the kinds of family and social networks that it has and the ways in which those networks support new migrants in the processes of working out a relationship between 'home' and the new setting of Scotland. The research will also explore the importance of language in maintaining and sustaining feelings of belonging to a 'home' community while located in a new space. The situation with Polish migrants in Scotland may be new because they are entering a space with very few minority population members and they may not be looking to 'settle' but to create an existence in which they are partly settled (through work and schooling) but remain culturally attached to the 'homeland', whose ways of doing things they keep alive in Scotland, and with which they are closely networked, through family connections, visits and communication. This 'in-between' identity creates new challenges to policy-makers in Scotland, and perhaps, especially to schooling, which is, in any case, not well equipped to respond to the specific needs of children of Polish origin. We want to see how Scottish schools, which are not used to large numbers of migrants, are responding to this new population. We want to find out about the relationships between schools and families, and we propose to ask family members, including pupils, about this. We will also interview education policy-makers and teachers about their attitudes and experiences

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