The Kaleco project
Individual multilingualism (i.e. an individual’s ability to communicate is several languages) remains an important challenge for the EU. Europe is a continent characterised by many different linguistic traditions, the legacy of ancient cultures, yet whose population is still largely monolingual. Integration cannot be achieved by the reliance on one language at the expense of marginalising or suppressing the other language and cultures have constituted European history.
Yet multilingualism is not an easy goal to achieve; the learning of other languages is a complex and often difficult task for any individual. One of the major obstacles is the ‘foreignness’ of foreign languages. Education systems cannot rely solely on reforms in curriculum delivery and pedagogic methods, an interest in languages and the cultures they embody needs to be encouraged by local language initiatives. It is through positive local initiatives that opportunity for real multilingualism can be achieved in most local and national European contexts.