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The educational experiences of refugee youths in greater Vancouver schools : parents’ and teachers’ perspectives Fakim, Ammaarah


This master’s thesis is a report of the analysis of the refugee youths’ educational experience in schools in the Greater Vancouver area from the perspectives of their parents and teachers. On an international scale, when people have been forced to leave their home country, the United Nations (UN) defines them as refugees. Based on the 1951 Refugee Geneva conference, a refugee is someone who has been forced to flee their country because of war, racial persecution, gender identity, religion, nationality, political opinion or/and environmental catastrophes and has crossed international borders to find safety in another country (UNHCR, 2019). This thesis looks at what has been said in previous studies about refugee students’ experiences in classrooms and integration into the new host society. While some studies have explored the behaviour of refugee children in classrooms and their integration with the school community, they have often focused on the teachers’ perspectives. Thus, there appears to be a lack of studies that involve the voices of refugee students’ parents about their children’s educational experiences in Greater Vancouver schools. Hence, the reason for my decision to explore parents’ and teachers’ perspectives of refugee youths’ educational experiences in schools within the Greater Vancouver region of British Columbia, Canada. At the core of the exploration about the topic is the interplay between one's national home culture and the Canadian culture, the school's multicultural/ multi-ethnic environment, the development of friendship across cultural borders, and the role that social class plays in the integration of refugee children in the school community.

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