Previous research has shown that adults from migrant backgrounds often have lower numeracy competence than do their majority counterparts, even though many were educated in their host country. Leaving secondary education with lower levels of numeracy competence than majority students potentially makes migrant students vulnerable as adults, as the lack of numeracy competence can negatively impact their opportunities to participate in work-life and society, in addition to affecting their everyday lives. Thus, it is vitally important to understand how mathematics education at the compulsory level can offer migrant students opportunities to develop numeracy competence. This paper presents a case study of four Norwegian lower secondary mathematics teachers. These teachers were asked to reflect on their classroom practices and on how they adapt teaching and assessment situations to migrant students. Our findings show that the teachers valued diversity in their classrooms and that their teaching was student-centred, focused on assessment for learning and problem-solving practices. These are potential building blocks for culturally responsive teaching. However, the teachers mainly focused on language issues, while cultural aspects of classroom participation and mathematical activity were neglected. This paper argues that such views may potentially hinder the provision of equal opportunities for all students to become numerate and, therefore, may contribute to maintaining migrant students—and the migrant adults they will become—as a vulnerable group.
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