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Tuesday, November 10, 2015

“When I Picture My Future, I See Nothing” - 400,000 Syrian children in Turkey not in school, HRW report says.

“When I Picture My Future, I See Nothing” - 400,000 Syrian children in Turkey not in school, HRW report says. (HD).

More than 400,000 Syrian refugee children in Turkey are unable to attend school despite a Turkish government move allowing them access to the Turkish schooling system, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in a report.

The U.S.-based rights group cited language barriers, integration issues and financial difficulties as reasons for the poor attendance in a report released Nov. 9 on its website.

As of October 2015, there were approximately 708,000 Syrian refugee children aged 5 to 17 in Turkey, said the 62-page report titled “‘When I Picture My Future, I See Nothing’: Barriers to Education for Syrian Refugee Children in Turkey.”

In 2014-2015, just over 212,000 were enrolled in formal education at the primary and secondary levels, based on Education Ministry data.

The Turkish Education Ministry said it aims to have 270,000 Syrian children in school by January 2016 and 370,000 in school by the end of the 2015-2016 school year, said the report, while citing the number 400,000 as the number out of the education system.

The report said enrollment rates are higher in education centers built in camps near the Syrian border. But a majority of school-aged children are living in cities outside the camps and are forced to work instead of attending school due to economic or language barriers.

Financial hardship was a major obstacle preventing Syrian children from going to class in Turkey, HRW said, with refugees not permitted to work legally and often unable to afford any school fees or transport charges.

Some 32 out of 50 households interviewed cited economic circumstances as a major barrier to both Turkish schools and temporary education centers.

“Parents are often unable to provide for their families on the minimal income they make in the informal labor market and as a result, child labor is rampant among the Syrian refugee population,” HRW said.

Many were also unable to attend school because of the language barrier, while others faced bullying and social integration difficulties. In some cases, they were even turned away, HRW said. Hmmmm.......Syria's Children the 'Dragon Teeth' Read the full report here.

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