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Schooling and Education in Lebanon

Syrian and Syrian Palestinian Refugees Inside and Outside the Camps

Nina Maadad and Grant Rodwell

This book provides insights into the education and schooling of Syrian and Palestinian Syrian children inside and outside Lebanese refugee camps. It describes what is happening to these children and young refugees in terms of their schooling. Investigating the perspectives of children, their parents, teachers, community leaders, and state politicians and bureaucrats on the schooling provisions and educational opportunities for refugee children in Lebanon, this book reveals the condition of social disadvantage that Syrian and Syrian Palestinian refugee children and their families are experiencing in Lebanon. Maadad and Rodwell propose the idea of the pedagogy of the displaced that recognises socio-economic disadvantage and refocuses the nature of the learner and their learning and the philosophy of teaching. A collaborative action of society – the refugee families, the schools, the communities, the host state, the international aid agencies and the rest of the world – in addressing the barriers to education and schooling of the refugee children must break ground and be sustained.

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Chapter One: Geopolitics, Middle East Conflicts, Communities, Refugees and Children

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CHAPTER ONE

Geopolitics, Middle East Conflicts, Communities, Refugees and Children

Introduction

During the northern summer of 2015 many Australians were shocked by the sheer number of desperate people from North Africa taking dangerous journeys on leaky boats to Italy, with the associated thousands of drownings. Meanwhile in Australia the Abbott Government claimed it “had stopped the boats” for asylum seekers to Australia’s north, thus preventing these people from reaching Australian shores. At the same time many Australians were shaken by the numbers of the desperate asylum seekers from North Africa to Europe, apparently in their tens of thousands. Moreover, additionally and often concurrently, the media presented graphic stories of conflicts in Iraq and Syria and the emergence of a military organisation seeking to call itself Islamic State (IS). Accompanying these stories were others poignantly describing massive refugee camps in Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon and in North Africa. Sections of Middle-East Islamic countries were in turmoil. What happens to the children as parents search for the safety of the refugee camps in neighbouring countries?

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