Lebanon: Education in exile

The ongoing violence in Syria continues to force people to flood across the country's borders. For Lebanon, a small nation beset by internal difficulties, the impact is staggering. Lebanon is the country with the highest per capita concentration of refugees.

 Syrian refugees in Lebanon have now lived for years in a state of vulnerability, facing a lack of shelter in a country that has banned refugee camps. Lebanon is reluctance to allow the construction of big official camps as in Jordan, Turkey and Iraq.. Life for Syrian refugees in Lebanon is becoming more and more desperate

There are nearly half a million Syrian children between the age of three and 18 in Lebanon. More than half of them do not receive any formal education. Limited resources and residency issues as well as work restrictions on their parents, are keeping the kids away from education. The influx of refugee students is taking a serious toll on the capacity of local teachers and the quality of education. In some schools, the entire dynamic in the classroom has changed. Not all teachers have been trained to work with refugee children suffering from psychological distres

As the conflict has dragged on, different adaptations of the Syrian official school curriculum have emerged, both inside the country and in countries hosting refugees. In Lebanon and Jordan, the Syrian curriculum used is a little different from the official version, however it is not done so with the approval of authorities.

During five years of civil war, the majority of Syria’s refugee children have been forced out of school, and the longer a child is out of school the more difficult it is to get them back in. Without education, Syria’s children will be a lost generation