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Appears in:
Pages: 1028-1034
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-617-5895-1
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2016.1231

Conference name: 9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 14-16 November, 2016
Location: Seville, Spain

ESTONIAN EXPERIENCE OF CONTENT- AND LANGUAGE-INTEGRATED LEARNING METHOD IMPLEMENTATION: DIVERGING PRACTICES, NEW CHALLENGES

K. Rannu

Tallinn University (ESTONIA)
The research departed from the observation that although Estonian has been rather successfully implemented as a language of instruction in a number of schools in Estonia where the first language of the students is not Estonian, there is still a lot of reluctance regarding teaching subjects in Estonian on upper secondary level, even among teachers‘ who acknowledge its benefits (Kello, Masso 2009, Metsalang et al. 2013). The aim of the author is to review the previous research, reports, newspaper articles and related government policy documents to create a historical overview that questions the reasons for this controversy.

Educational reforms have set high standards for all teachers. Minority schools‘ teachers in Estonia face the obligation to perform their competency in Estonian language and their fluency is sometimes seen as a pretext to teach other subjects in Estonian. The implementation of CLIL (Content- and Language Integrated Learning) begun in Estonia in 2000. This year was previously set by the parliament as a deadline to implement Estonian as a language of instruction in all minority schools, which, of course, was an objective far too optimistic. Today the schools have to grant at least 60% of the upper secondary studies in Estonian. Exceptions are permitted by the National Curriculum for Upper Secondary School (2011) on condition they receive the government's approval. So far, none of the upper secondary schools who have demanded to reduce the number of obligatory courses have succeeded to get a favorable decision for this exception. The question is, therefore, a complex one, as the language of the minorities in Estonia is mostly Russian, spoken as a first language by about a quarter of the whole population. At the same time, Russian is one of ten most spoken languages worldwide. The legislative documents underline that the language is a central key to access culture. In the reports, there is a tendency to speak of and compare “good practices” to “not so good practices” with references mainly to PISA results. The subject was the most often discussed in media around 2011 and 2012 when the new curriculum for upper secondary schools was derogated. Also, Russian government representatives have repeatedly taken a stand in regard to the question about the education of the minority population in Estonia and other former USSR states. One of the most questionable propositions was announced by the Foreign Minister of Russia, Sergei Lavrov in 2014, who proposed to create Russian schools based on Russian school standards and financed by Russia in the Baltic States and in other former USSR countries.

This research is an input for the next phase of the author’s Ph.D. thesis about the beliefs of the teachers who work in minority schools in Estonia in regards to CLIL implementation. Often, people’s beliefs about the world are modeled by their need to relate to others. To share – or not – the same attitude and values towards something can create a sense of belonging as well as alienation. The research will be focusing on the aspects of belonging, job motivation and attitudes in relation to the CLIL method integration in Estonian minority schools. Currently, the researcher is gathering information with a questionnaire (mixed method). The data gathering should be completed by the end of November 2016.
@InProceedings{RANNU2016EST,
author = {Rannu, K.},
title = {ESTONIAN EXPERIENCE OF CONTENT- AND LANGUAGE-INTEGRATED LEARNING METHOD IMPLEMENTATION: DIVERGING PRACTICES, NEW CHALLENGES},
series = {9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2016 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-5895-1},
issn = {2340-1095},
doi = {10.21125/iceri.2016.1231},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/iceri.2016.1231},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Seville, Spain},
month = {14-16 November, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {1028-1034}}
TY - CONF
AU - K. Rannu
TI - ESTONIAN EXPERIENCE OF CONTENT- AND LANGUAGE-INTEGRATED LEARNING METHOD IMPLEMENTATION: DIVERGING PRACTICES, NEW CHALLENGES
SN - 978-84-617-5895-1/2340-1095
DO - 10.21125/iceri.2016.1231
PY - 2016
Y1 - 14-16 November, 2016
CI - Seville, Spain
JO - 9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2016 Proceedings
SP - 1028
EP - 1034
ER -
K. Rannu (2016) ESTONIAN EXPERIENCE OF CONTENT- AND LANGUAGE-INTEGRATED LEARNING METHOD IMPLEMENTATION: DIVERGING PRACTICES, NEW CHALLENGES, ICERI2016 Proceedings, pp. 1028-1034.
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