Organization of education programs for displaced Khmers on the Thai-Kampuchean border

Virginia Margaret Hasson, Fordham University


The burgeoning numbers of refugees throughout the world and their increasing length of stay in their displaced situation prompted this study. According to the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, everyone has a right to education and parents have a prior right over the education of their children. This research project focused on that right to education and particularly on the belief that procedural justice demands that refugees have the right to participate in the decision making regarding their education. The study was based on the hermeneutical cycle of inquiry involved in a theory of practice. The purpose of this study was to increase the understanding of the organization of education in a long-term refugee situation in order to improve practice, especially with regard to refugee participation in decision making. As the result of six months investigation at the field level, a case study was developed in which four perspectives were formulated: (1) The practical-normative depicts the goals and aspirations regarding formal and informal education at Site Two. (2) The practical-descriptive delineates the reality about the educational programs and the educational processes related to formulating and delivering these programs. (3) The theoretical-normative perspective analyzes the data from the point of view of justice as participation. (4) The theoretical-descriptive perspective views the data as it relates to the transactional approach to policy implementation. This study concluded that it has been unjust to keep services to the Khmers in an emergency mode for ten years. Long ago the situation should have been moved into the development mode in which the priority that the Khmers, themselves, afford to education would have been recognized and facilitated. At the end of the study, recommendations are made to facilitate the lessening of oppression in refugee situations and the provision of a system which makes transformation possible.

Subject Area

School administration|International law|International relations

Recommended Citation

Hasson, Virginia Margaret, "Organization of education programs for displaced Khmers on the Thai-Kampuchean border" (1989). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9007183.