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Education for young immigrants

Linköping welcomes diversity. People from different cultures enrich society and contribute to the development of the municipality. For those of you who have recently arrived in Linköping, there are different measures aimed at ensuring your ability to participate in school and childcare.


If you have children between the ages of 1 and 5 and you want your child to participate in pre-school activities, the same rules and guidelines apply for your child as for other children. There are no special pre-schools and children are placed in regular pre-school groups. When your child begins pre-school, special introduction support is offered with someone who speaks your language. 

Children with a different native language than Swedish should be given the opportunity to develop both the Swedish language and
their native language.

Newly arrived students in the compulsory school

When newly arrived students come to Linköping Municipality they are offered, in common with their guardians/custodians, an appointment with the reception unit for an enrolment conversation. In the reception unit, the compulsory pedagogic mapping commences. This concerns all students arriving in Sweden, within four years of arrival, whom thus fulfils the National Agency for Education’s definition of a newly arrived student.

Get a picture

The objective is to get a picture of the student’s knowledge and educational background. The focus is on the student’s strengths, which will facilitate the continued education in a Swedish school. In addition, the student’s get a health control in the reception unit. The amount of time the students spend in the reception unit varies depending on need, but it should be no more than 8 weeks. The principal of the receiving school makes the decision regarding year assignment and assignment to a study group at the school.

Native language classes

Children and adolescents with a native language other than Swedish have the right to receive native language teaching in primary and secondary school. The classes are voluntary. Native language classes can take many forms. The most common is for teaching to be held outside school hours.

English classes

At Atlasskolan there are also two classes with English as the language of instruction, for students age 7-11. These classes are reserved for students who are temporarily staying in Sweden.

Upper secondary school - language introduction

Language introduction is aimed at young people from 16 – 19 years of age who have recently arrived in Sweden and who do not have sufficient skills in Swedish to pass another introduction programme or national programme. The purpose behind language introduction is to provide an education focused on Swedish, which makes it possible for recently-arrived adolescents to continue to upper secondary school or to another educational programme. If recently-arrived adolescents have a level of Swedish that corresponds to what is required for qualification, they can be offered education in a national programme or, if the student is unqualified for those, in another introduction programme, i.e. preparatory training or programme-oriented individual electives.

Study guidance

The municipality arranges study guidance for those students who are not sufficiently proficient in Swedish to actively participate in classes and follow the curriculum. Study guidance shall:

  • help the pupil follow teaching in Swedish
  • provide the pupil with terms and concepts in both languages
  • increase the pupil’s ability to achieve the school goals

Parents and the school will discuss the pupil’s/child's need for study guidance for different subjects. The school's headmaster ultimately decides if a pupil is to be offered study guidance in his or her native language. Schools with a high proportion of students with a native language other than Swedish offer language workshops. A language workshop is a reinforced, developed study guidance programme with the goal of improving skills in both Swedish and the native language. The target group is students who, due to deficiencies in Swedish, have difficulties following the lessons.

Swedish as a second language in primary and secondary school

Swedish as a second language is a special subject for pupils that have a native language other than Swedish. The goal is to enable those pupils to use Swedish in the same way as pupils with Swedish as a native language, thereby giving them the same opportunities for living and working in Swedish society. To be able to use Swedish verbally and in writing is a prerequisite for the future lives of the pupils. Through subjects like Swedish as a second language, schools give pupils the opportunity to develop their abilities to speak and listen, as well as read and write in different situations. The headmaster decides whether teaching in Swedish as a second language shall be arranged for a pupil. Swedish as a second language shall be arranged for

1. students who have a language other than Swedish as a native language

2. students who have Swedish as a native language and who have been accepted from schools abroad, and

3. immigrant children who use Swedish as their primary social language with one or both legal guardians. Pupils in primary and secondary school may not study both Swedish and Swedish as a second language. Pupils in primary and secondary school who study Swedish as a second language have the possibility of choosing this elective language course during school years 6-9.

Swedish as a second language in upper secondary school

Students in upper secondary school that have a native language other than Swedish can study Swedish as a second language instead of Swedish, if the student needs and desires this. Such a student can also study Swedish within the scope of his or her individual electives. In upper secondary school, Swedish as a second language is divided into two courses; Swedish as a second language 1 and 2. Upper secondary school grades in Swedish as a second language 1 and 2 are totally equivalent to grades in Swedish 1 and 2 when applying to higher education or if you want to take more courses in Swedish in upper secondary school. You indicate if you want to study Swedish as a second language on the upper secondary school application form.


Last updated 11 November 2019

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