TENSTA, Sweden, March 8 (UPI) -- Immigrants to Sweden are guaranteed Swedish language training, but more students arrive in class completely illiterate, officials say.
The "Swedish for Immigrants" classes, funded by local municipalities for newcomers over the age of 16, have seen the number of students with only one or two years of formal education double since 2006, Swedish public radio SR International reported.
An example, mentioned Thursday in the Stockholm News, is a class in Tensta, a Stockholm suburb, where the majority of students are women, typically from Africa, and one in four have had little or no school experience.
"They cannot take care of their children because of their lack of Swedish. They also don't know how preschool works. They lose their sense of human value as they don't have any role in society," said teacher Kiia Ojala.
One example is 26-year-old Khadra Adow, who emigrated from Somalia and is attending school in Tensta for the first time.
"I have not done any writing before and now I write and read a little in Swedish," she said.
Instructors have little training in teaching illiterates, and only about a third of the students pass the basic-level courses, the newspaper reported.
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