The development of competences for teaching multilingual classes, including learners from migrant backgrounds, through languages of international communication has not received attention, even though there is a pressing need for it, which is precisely why so much emphasis is now placed on it at a policy level (e.g. ‘Rethinking language education at schools’, EC 2017; ‘European Strategy on Multilingualism-Policy and implementation at the EU level’, EP, Saville & Gutierrez Eugenio 2016). Indeed, as regards EU-funded projects, even though several of them focus, e.g., on strengthening social inclusion, supporting teachers of multilingual classes or improving English teaching and learning, based on their official summaries, surprisingly few of them acknowledge the role of English as a lingua franca (ELF) in multilingual contexts, let alone the need to develop teacher competences in this regard. Notable exceptions include the ‘BACKBONE’ project (2009-2011), which produced an ELF corpus for CLIL, and PALM (‘Promoting authentic language acquisition in multilingual contexts’2015-2018), which produced learning materials drawing on ELF. The ENRICH CPD course integrates key practices from these projects.
As regards non-EU-funded projects as well, to date, there have been only a few insights from teacher education programmes focusing on issues relevant to ENRICH. Such programmes include the course by Hall et al (2013), which aimed at making teachers (e.g. in China) aware of the plurilithic nature of English, and the programmes by ENRICH partners, e.g. the ‘ELF-TEd’ by Sifakis & Bayyurt (2015, 2018), which focused on raising the awareness of pre- and in-service ELTs (in Turkey, Greece, Spain and Poland) of the pedagogical implications of ELF, and the programmes by Lopriore (2016) and Kordia (2016) in Italy and Greece, respectively. The knowledge and experience gained in them, which feeds into this project to a high degree, indicates the urgent need for a transnational project consistent with the priorities and objectives of ENRICH.