Immigrant Students Reflections on Their Failed Results from Compulsory School: Reconsidering Multi-dimensional Solutions (Note 1)

Getahun Yacob Abraham


The purpose of the study is to investigate reasons students with an immigrant background in one Swedish high school gives for their failure in some subjects at the end of their compulsory education. An interview with 18 students with an immigrant background is used as a method. According to the students, schools’ employment of substitute teachers without subject knowledge, reducing and firing competent teachers and less time for Swedish language lessons are reasons for failure in relation to schools. Other reasons given that affect results relate to family issues; leaving their country of origin, having many siblings and not getting enough attention from parents, parents inability to help them with school work, limited family financial resources and social obligations to support family members in their country of origin. In their residential area; not meeting persons with Swedish origin, lack of recreational facilities and meeting place, higher unemployment and crime rate are emphasized as affecting their lives and influencing their results. Based on the research findings and reviewed literature, students’ failure is mainly related to school, family and residential areas. The problems vary to a great extent, hence, the solutions should also be multi-dimensional.

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