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Immigrant education and the makings of a never citizen: The case of Greece Open Access


Other title
immigrant students, citizenship, citizenship education, deliberative democracy, interpretive inquiry, invisible immigrant, critical hermeneutics, educational policy, reform, Greece, country of origin, Greek Orthodox Church, Orthodoxy, economy, neo-fascism, religion, liberal democracy, nation, state, nation-state, ethnicity, interpretive, event, cultural reproduction, translation
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Macris, Vicki
Supervisor and department
Ali A. Abdi, Department of Educational Policy Studies
Examining committee member and department
Peter McLaren, College of Educational Studies
Yasmeen Abu-Laban, Department of Political Science
David G. Smith, Department of Secondary Education
Kent den Heyer, Department of Secondary Education
Department of Educational Policy Studies
Theoretical Cultural and International Studies is Education
Date accepted
Graduation date
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
This thesis delineates a qualitative research approach that investigates immigrant students’ learning and social experiences in Greek state schools. The purpose of this research was to gain deeper insights into the life and learning experiences of immigrant students and to explore the ways in which school level policies meet, or do not meet the schooling needs of immigrant students and improve immigrant education. Moreover, the research seeks to establish if, in fact, such policies are implemented, supported, and enacted. Immigrant students undoubtedly experience marginalization, exclusion, isolation and invisibility in dominant culture-normed schooling environments, while a look at educational practices in public schools reveals that immigrant-receiving societies continue to reflect the values and knowledge of the dominant society or culture (Vedder, Horenczyk, & Liebkind, 2006). The study seeks to find whether or not immigrants, minorities, or marginalized people are given the opportunities required to live a better life in their host country and to receive, at minimum, an education that is equivalent to the education most native students receive. It has increasingly become a social necessity, if not a matter of urgent moral concern in Greek society, to address the educational needs of marginalized immigrant youth who seem to be continuously isolated from public policy, as well as educational policy discourse in Greece. As such, improving the educational experience of immigrant students should be a top policy priority for immigrant receiving countries, especially those experiencing particularly high levels of immigration-related populations. Prioritizing the education of immigrant students may likely yield potential benefits not only to the population of immigrant students who are the focal group under investigation in this study, but to all marginalized and disenfranchised students and youth in Greek society. Improving immigrant students’ opportunities for self-invention and self-efficacy in schools goes far beyond benefiting immigrant students, alone; rather, focusing on immigrant students as a marginalized group might serve as a catalyst to inform and conscientize researchers, educators, policy makers to all marginalized youth, who continue to struggle in one of the most exclusionary systems of public education imaginable.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
Citation for previous publication
Macris, V. Towards a Pedagogy of Philoxenia: Negotiating policy priorities for immigrant Students in Greek Public Schools. Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies [JCEPS]), (12 pages) Volume 10, Number 1.; Macris, V. (2012). National identity and the education of immigrants: Greece and the rights of ‘non-citizens.’ In A. A. Abdi & P. Carr (Eds.), Educating for democratic consciousness: Counter-hegemonic possibilities, (Chapter XX). New York: Peter Lang Publishers.; Ellis, J., Janjic-Watrich, V., Macris, V. & Marynowski, R. (2011). Using Exploratory Interviews to Re-frame Planned Research on Classroom Issues. Journal of Educational Practices, Vol. 9, No. 1, 10-18.

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