European societies are increasingly diverse, and migration has become a socio-political priority in most European countries. Although this diversity offers countless opportunities, it also presents a challenge. The scale of migration in the new millennium is different than in the past, with an increase in destinations and countries of origin. Countries that were not traditionally viewed as destination countries of migration are now facing difficulties to deal with greater diversity.
Integration is, therefore, a priority for maintaining social cohesion and economic development across Europe. Moreover, intercultural education and competences are key to living and growing in the present-day environment. The increase in diversity offers numerous opportunities for individuals and societies. Indeed, increased diversity can help foster the economic growth, innovation and new perspectives that can help a society move forward. However, these opportunities must be actively cultivated.
When considering these opportunities and the incredible reach of sport and physical activity, physical education teachers and coaches must have an awareness of how different cultures affect people’s values and behaviours, understand the different ways of mediating personal and social relationships, and possess the skills to generate intercultural learning opportunities in their classes and training sessions.
The context described above provides the starting point for EDU:PACT. Combining the expertise of universities and organisations working in the fields of physical education, coaching and intercultural education, EDU:PACT, through this Module Handbook, provides current and future physical education teachers and coaches with an opportunity to gain the skills, knowledge, competences and tools needed to deliver interculturally-sensitive educational sessions.
At the beginning of the EDU:PACT project, the partners conducted research and focus group interviews in their respective countries. A summary of the results from this work can be found on our interactive toolkit.