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Global Cities and Immigrants

A Comparative Study of Chicago and Madrid


Edited By Francisco Velasco Caballero and María de los Angeles Torres

Global Cities and Immigrants provides a detailed set of comparative case studies of the immigration policies of two global cities undergoing dramatic demographic changes. At the heart of this research are several theoretical questions. One is about the increased importance of municipal and local governments in a globalized world, particularly regarding immigrants. As the world global­izes and national governments attempt to tighten their grip, the failure of national policies to address the needs of new global situations encourages local governments to develop policies that resolve these new conditions. Although immigration is a federal policy in the United States and Spain, city and state governments have increasingly played a role in shaping both the enforcement of national laws and integration experiences of immigrants. This creates a local politics and indeed a legality of immigration that is strongly shaped by local views of economic, political, and security interests, as well as differing perceptions of immigrants’ rights and place in the polity.
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Chapter Eight: Immigrant Minors’ Integration and Social Cohesion Policies Through the School


← 194 | 195 → CHAPTER EIGHT

Immigrant Minors’ Integration and Social Cohesion Policies Through the School



It cannot be said that immigration is a new phenomenon in Spain, but compared to what is happening in other European countries, it can be said that it is in an early stage of development. In the last ten years, a report issued by the Office of the National Ombudsman—Immigrant Schooling in Spain: Descriptive and Empirical Analysis (2003)—has become widely read. The number of students with immigrant backgrounds was around 100,000 (data refers to the 2000–2001 school year), which accounts for 1.84% of the total number of students (p. 410 of the cited report). The increase, always moderate until 1997, doubled from 1997 up to 2001 (p. 411), which took place as the national student population in elementary, middle, and high school (up to eleventh grade) had supposedly remained stable. The percentage of immigrant students with respect to the total number of students varied notably among autonomous regions or autonomous cities. Whereas in Ceuta and Melilla immigrant students made up 12.3% of the total number of students, in Madrid the percentage was 4.4%, and in Galicia only 0.4% of students were immigrants (p. 76).

The report was based upon some papers that had already dealt with this issue by that time, trying to make it easier to analyze...

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