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International Conference on 10-11 May









The aim of the conference:

Presentation and in depth discussion of the Report ‘Development of Minimum Standards for Education in Regional or Minority Languages'. The study for this report has been carried out by Mercator on behalf of the Provincial Government of Fryslân / Friesland. The initiative was taken by dr. Albertes MULDER, member of the Executive of the provincial administration of Fryslân / Friesland and special rapporteur for this project at the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities (CLRAE) of the Council of Europe. The report will be discussed during the spring session (29 March) and approved at the plenary meeting of the CLRAE (end of May). The results of the presentations and the outcomes of the discussions held at this conference on various themes of this report will be used to make recommendations to the CLRAE and the Committee of Experts of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages.

By means of this conference the European Research Centre would like to make contacts with relevant researchers, professional workers and policymakers in the field of language acquisition and language learning. The Centre would like to mobilise the expertise in this field and to contribute to the transfer of research results to the day-to-day practice. The presentations and discussions of this conference will focus on the cross roads of research results, language policy developments and good practices.



Thursday 10 May:
Language Policy & Research


Conference Theme:
Towards Common Goals & Minimum Standards in RML education

Input: “The Development of Minimum Standards on Language Education in Regional and Minority Languages”. This report is presented to the Council of Europe by the rapporteur dr. A.J. Mulder

Theme 1:
Common goals and minimum standards
Presentations of examples fitting to the level ii: “substantial part” / iii: “integral part” of the curriculum (article 8 of the European Charter on Regional or Minority Languages) with regard to the setting of core goals / targets and the level of language command to be achieved in terms of the CEFR by the end of primary schooling respectively by the end of obligatory school attendance.

Expected outcomes:
Identification of wishes and needs regarding research concerning the central themes of minimum standards in RML education.
Suggestions for the improvement of the various aspects; examples of successful teaching models and exams.   
Suggestions for research in terms of the European Language Barometer / European Language Indicator

Theme 2:
Levels of ratification in practice
Various levels of ratification of article. 8 Education of the European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages “substantial part” / “integral part”) in relationship to:
- education models (time investment, continuity of teaching, teaching in and teaching of the RMLs);
- quality of teachers; qualification of teachers training courses (initial training, in service training);
- continuity of teaching and learning with particular attention to the step (or: shed) between primary school and secondary education.;
- the application of the Common European Framework of Reference for regional and minority languages (both: mother-tongue and second language learning).
Expected outcomes:
Recommndations for the improvement of the continuity of teaching and learning in practice.
Proposals for the applications of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) and the European Language Portfolio in multilingual schooling.
Proposal for further research of the continuity of teaching and learning with the emphasis on the step from primary to secondary schooling.
Suggestions for test-models independent of teaching materials used and to be related to the CEFR.

Friday 11 May:

educational practice – the case of Friesland

Theme 3:
Language acquisition in a multilingual context (at home, at school, in the peer group)

Ynput: Bernetaalûntwikkeling
Wurkpleats ûndersyk: Wat is it ferlet oan ûndersyk foar taalferwerving (yn thússitewaasje, yn skoallesitewaasje), bygelyks yn de foarm fan streef-wurdlisten en toetsen foar pjutten (yn Frysk, yn Nederlânsk)?

Expected outcomes:
Suggestions for the educational practice: systematic approach and reading practice (books, songs and verses) etc.
Suggestions for further research in terms of multilingual language acquisition at home and at school.

Theme 4:
Education models and the curriculum in multilingual schools
Special emphasis on the early start of trilingual schooling (Netherlands: group 5, age 8; Basque Country: age 15)
Models of bilingual / trilingual education and the expected results of them.

Expected outcomes:
Recommendations for research on the development of language skills in a multilingual setting.
Project proposal form common project of primary schools / secondary schools with regard to continuity of teaching and learning for ILLP / Comenius

Theme 5:
Integrated language policy at school
What does mean “integrated language policy” in educational practice?
Which need for research projects can be expressed for the improvement of integrated language practice?
Input: Nota Boppeslach (2007-2010) and beyond.
Expected outcomes:
Suggestions for research projects in terms of the Nota Boppeslach
Suggestions for further development of the trilingual school (curriculum, teaching of and teaching in three languages).

Venue: It Aljemint / Fryske Akademy,
Address: Doelestrjitte 2-4 – Ljouwert / Leeuwarden ( Netherlands )