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BMBF funds new study at the Leibniz Institute for Educational Trajectories with "Bildungswege von geflüchteten Kindern und Jugendlichen" (Educational Pathways of Refugee Children and Adolescents)

How children and adolescents with a refugee background progress through the German education system plays a central role in their integration and their opportunities to participate in all areas of society. The newly approved project "Educational Trajectories of Children and Adolescents with Refugee Background (BildungswegeFlucht)" will be conducted at the Leibniz Institute for Educational Trajectories (LIfBi) in Bamberg and will examine educational trajectories as well as educational decisions of young refugees at key interfaces of the German education system with a longterm perspective. On the one hand, the focus is on the transitions of children from elementary school to the structured school system and, on the other hand, on the transitions of young people to vocational training and the labor market.

With the immigration of refugees in recent years, especially from 2014 to 2017, many school-aged children and young people arrived in Germany. Among the 1.5 million immigrants who applied for asylum in Germany during these years (see BAMF, 2018), approximately one-third were minors (Eurostat, 2019). The rate of under 18-year-olds increased from 31.8% in 2014 to 45.0% in 2017 (BAMF, 2018; Eurostat, 2019; own calculations).

The goal of BildungswegeFlucht is to collect data on the medium- and longterm integration of young refugees into the German education system, which can be used to describe educational trajectories over a longer period of time and analyze educational decisions at key interfaces of the German education system.

"We want to know how educational trajectories are shaped within the school and education system and what the impact of supportive measures is. Are children with refugee background able to cope with elementary school in the standard duration? What is the impact of special vocational preparation measures? Can young people successfully complete their chosen vocational training? I am very pleased that the BMBF is supporting us in this ambitious project," says Dr. Jutta von Maurice, who is responsible for the BildungswegeFlucht project together with Dr. Gisela Will.

At the end of January, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) approved funding for BildungswegeFlucht. The project is scheduled to run until mid-2026. It builds on the data of the ReGES (Refugees in the German Educational System) project, which is also funded by the BMBF and has been conducted at LIfBi since mid-2016. ReGES has succeeded in convincing a large group of preschool children with their parents as well as adolescents of the objective of the study and to accompany them over three school years in the early phase of integration into the German educational system. A stable panel could be established, which will be the starting point for BildungswegeFlucht. Surveys of refugee children, parents and adolescents are planned for 2022 and 2024.

The data obtained through the BildungswegeFlucht project will be made available to the research community free of charge by the LIfBi Research Data Center. Since the results of the BildungswegeFlucht study are of interest to society as a whole, key findings will also be made available to the general public.

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