Refugee Education Policies

Refugee Education Policies

Adnan Boyacı (Anadolu University, Turkey) and Yakup Öz (Anadolu University, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-3325-2.ch002
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Continuing conflicts and wars in emergencies are the main sources of refugee flows around the world. Dealing with refugee crisis loads social, political and economic burden to the host countries based on the preferred durable solutions. And the educational services provided to refugees are also changing in accordance with the legal recognition of the immigrant status issued by the host countries. In this study refugee education policies are examined by identifying legal definition of refugees and types of durable solutions, discussing controversies of refugee education in mass public education of nation states, dealing with refugee education in camp and urban settings, criticizing the will of international organization in handling refugee crisis and education, and focusing on a current refugee flow from Syria in the context of Turkish refugee education policies and practices. At the end, importance on taking responsibilities in refugee crisis and education by all nations of the world is emphasized, considering that quality refugee education would be helpful for rebuilding refugees' society and nation in their country of origin again.
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Background And Rationale Of Educational Policies For Refugees

Education is a powerful agent for the transition and integration of refugees into the social and cultural life of the host country. Education has a capacity to repair the social and emotional wound of young refugees from their past and it can navigate acculturation process by challenging disadvantage, discrimination, oppression and conflicts (Matthews, 2008; Sinclair, 2001; Huyck and Fields, 1981). UNHCR (2003), emphasizes the importance of refugee education by declaring:

  • Education is a human right

  • Education is a tool of protection

  • Education helps meet psychosocial needs

  • Education promotes self-reliance, social and economic development

Besides, the rational for refugee education also could be traced back in some policy papers like The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (1979), The Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989), The Dakar Education for All Framework for Action (2000) and the Millennium Development Goals (2000) (Dryden-Peterson, 2012; Pascual, 2003). Besides, UNESCO 2030 Strategic Development Goal 4 on education also covers refugee education and education in emergencies.

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