Digital learning innovations for Syrian refugees and host communities
The impact of the Syrian conflict and accompanying refugee crisis on the education systems in Jordan and Lebanon is immense. Estimates suggest that approximately 714,000 displaced Syrian children are out of school, and almost half of them are in Jordan and Lebanon. More than 100,000 children in Jordan are out of school, while 143,000 Syrian refugees attend public schools nationwide. The situation is worse in Lebanon, with more than 230,000 children out of school. The majority of displaced Syrian children in the region face a future without adequate access to quality education and training opportunities, including increased vulnerability to social, economic, and sexual exploitation, increased conflict, and limited prospects for future employability.
The challenges in Jordan and Lebanon’s education systems are similar: overcrowded classrooms, lack of qualified teachers, insufficient educational resources, traumatized children, high dropout rates, and curriculum mismatch. On a more positive note, integration of displaced communities through education is an area that is receiving growing attention, not only for its potential to empower the displaced communities, but also for the promise it holds for achieving co-existence with host communities.
This project proposes to address the education crisis (including both inherent and refugee-related challenges) in Jordan and Lebanon using digital learning innovations. In collaboration with project partners the International Education Association, Birzeit University, and the Jordanian Education Initiative, the project will develop and test digital educational tools and resources to enhance accessibility and quality of learning. This includes introduction and testing of new technologies, resources, and pedagogies. It will also include building the capacities of a pool of educators through a training-of-trainers methodology that combines bottom-up with top-down approaches to ensure sustainability and efficient scalability. This project will be implemented in up to 25 schools in Lebanon and Jordan. The proposed interventions will be flexible so they can be effectively applied in formal and non-formal learning settings. They will be easy to deploy at a very low cost (or no additional cost to the system), and they will be easily scaled and readily integrated within the mainstream educational system.