Interview with Dr. Eleonore Hartl-Grötsch
Dr. Eleonore Hartl-Grötsch is head of the day-to-day operations of the city of Munich with over 4,000 employees. In an interview, she explains what the work of the so-called “Intercultural Educators” (IKE) looks like in the city daycare centers and why the city of Munich has chosen these positions.
Around 50 intercultural educators work in the Munich daycare centers. Why did you choose to set up these workstations?
Many children with a migration background live in Munich. Their share of all children is even higher than in Berlin. We have therefore always dealt with how interculturality can be designed in daycare centers – because we want to enable intercultural encounters in our facilities and promote interest and understanding for one another. We can achieve a lot in daycare centers: here children from different cultural backgrounds play and learn under one roof – and also their parents meet each other.
That is why the city council decided in 1999 to qualify 50 specialists as intercultural educators. With the federal program “Focus on Day Care for Languages & Integration ”, another 100 part-time jobs with the same profile were added in 2011. Today there are a total of 150 educators in Munich who are dedicated to the topic of interculturality. In this function, they work part-time, with 30 hours or full-time per week in daycare centers with one high Proportion of children with a migration background.
What are the tasks of intercultural educators?
The intercultural educators support the social and linguistic integration of the children in day-to-day care, advise educators on intercultural education and work intensively with the parents.
Working with the day care team is particularly important. Because only if all educators are well qualified can intercultural education be lived in everyday life – and thus the educational opportunities and educational success of all children increase.
In addition, the intercultural educators network with other actors from the district – be it the neighborhood association, the multi-generational house or the Turkish community. The aim is to exchange ideas and deals for people with a migration background. On the one hand, this avoids double structures in the offer landscape. On the other hand, intercultural educators can better advise parents and draw attention to other offers in the district.
How are intercultural educators supported in their work?
We have established specific specialist advice in Munich. In 2002, four regional advisors for intercultural education were created. About the federal program “Focus on daycare centers language & Integration ”, a further 12 specialist consultations could be established, which accompany the intercultural educators and language experts, but also facilities without these additional specialists are available for questions about the topic.
The aim is to support the daycare centers in the continuous development and implementation of uniform standards for the following educational priorities – in relation to intercultural pedagogy and language education: pedagogical work with the children; Involvement of parents in educational work; Discussing intercultural and interreligious topics in a team; Reflection, evaluation and further development of intercultural and interreligious pedagogical work as well as language education in everyday pedagogical life with the entire team; as well as district and public relations work.
In addition, intercultural educators can take part in subject-related advanced training courses at the Pedagogical Institute in Munich as well as in regional working groups.
Children with escape background in child day care
The structured everyday life and the child-friendly environment in daycare centers and day care centers allow children with a refugee background to feel safe. In addition, childcare offers offer the best prerequisites for the children to quickly learn the German language and establish contacts with other children. more
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