The educational experiences of refugee children in countries of first asylum

This report explores the educational histories of young refugee children in first-asylum countries and identifies elements of these that are relevant to post-resettlement education in the United States. The author’s analysis draws on more than a decade of in-depth research conducted on refugee education in countries of first asylum prior to arrival in the United States. Based on this research, the author identifies four key aspects of educational experiences that are particularly salient for U.S. teachers and schools: limited and disrupted educational opportunities, language barriers to educational access, inadequate quality of instruction, and discrimination in school settings. The report includes findings from field-based case studies involving children from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar, Somalia, and Syria, who were living in first-asylum countries Bangladesh, Burundi, Egypt, Kenya, Malaysia, and Uganda.

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