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Palestinian Refugee Children and Education: Challenges for UNRWA

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The article considers the quality of education that Palestinian refugee children receive in UNRWA schools in the five areas of operation in which they are to be found, namely the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria. The challenges that UNRWA and its staff have to face are outlined in the context of the UNESCO definition of what constitutes ‘quality education.’ In this article the present and emerging challenges for UNRWA in delivering sound education are organised around four inter-related categories, namely ‘human resource issues’, ‘learning issues’, ‘systems issues’, and ‘physical infrastructure issues’. The claim is made that despite important achievements, there are important shortfalls and gaps in UNRWA services to Palestinian refugee children, and that UNRWA schools are losing ground increasingly in danger of lagging behind host countries. Reasons for this state of affairs are explored.

Keywords: Palestinian refugee children; UNESCO; UNWRA; quality education

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Malta

Publication date: January 1, 2007

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  • World Studies in Education is a bi-annual, refereed, international journal offering a global overview of significant international and comparative education research. Its focus is on educational reforms and policy affecting institutions in the global economy.

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