A school where students can learn essential skills, Groningen’s English Academy for Newcomers serves as a landing point for refugees and migrants who have recently arrived in the country, quickly adapting to the north of the Netherlands before transitioning to a traditional education system. Acts as a place and job market.
Since opening in January 2022, vocational schools have been a cornerstone of the system, and their need has never been greater. Since last year, approximately 240 adult students have enrolled in the Academy. All are keen to learn English to improve their job prospects and restart their careers.
“Refugees, asylum-seekers, credential holders – everyone is welcome,” said Professor Marie Michel, one of the Academy’s founders. Said Dagblad van het Noorden. “But we prefer to talk about newcomers. Participants must be at least 18 years old, as there is no license to teach minors.”
Although the school does not serve all refugees who want to learn English, newcomer assistance in preparing the very large number of adult immigrants is seen as an invaluable resource for Groningen.
Most of the school’s students are from Turkey, but there are also Ukrainians, Syrians, Afghans, Yemenis and Nigerians. “Most of them are highly educated and well-qualified professionals such as judges, lawyers, ICT specialists, engineers and teachers. Many worked for the government in their respective countries. ,” says Seit Gyok, another co-founder of the school.
The mission of Shinjin Gakuen
At English Academy for Newcomers, all teachers are qualified to teach English as a second language. School curricula are tailored to the barriers faced by immigrant populations. “We believe that financial independence and full participation in society improve the wellbeing of newcomers and, as a result, add value to their communities,” says the school’s mission. We help newcomers reach their full potential through a range of services, including pricing education and mentoring programs.”
Lessons are held every Tuesday and Thursday from 6-8pm. It’s a difficult schedule, Michelle admits. “Some people live in places like Sneek and Coevorden. It takes her two hours to come and go,” she says. About 60 students enroll each semester, but only 20-25 of her complete the course. Many of them are very difficult, Professor Michel says, but those who complete the course are much better prepared to meet the challenges of the Dutch employment culture and gain some control over their lives.
https://northerntimes.nl/how-newcomer-academy-helps-refugees-start-new-life/ How Newcomer Academy Helps Refugees Start a New Life – Northern Times