Over the past several years, thousands of Syrian refugees have been fleeing their homeland to escape war and heading to Jordan, where the refugee-friendly Za’atari camp resides.

Za’atari opened in 2012 and currently houses 80,000 Syrian refugees, including families in need of a proper education system for their children. Although Jordan implemented a provision in 2016 which provided 75,000 new schools specifically for Syrian refugee children, thousands of these children are missing out on the Jordanian education system.

Among these 75,000 new schools are 50,000 new public schools and 25,000 locations in non-formal school settings, all of which were meant to be designated learning spaces for Syrian refugee children living in Jordan.

Despite the significant number of schools available to Syrian refugees, there is a severe lack of teachers who are adequately trained and qualified to instruct these students. Additionally, Syrian refugee children who enroll in Jordanian schools face social restrictions due to bullying problems.

With nearly 27,000 students in need of education, Za’atari resources, including education, have become very limited, which has led many young people to child labor or early marriage to help their families’ financial situations. With so few of these kids in school, Save the Children has found that almost 50 percent of Jordan’s Syrian population rely on income provided by a child in the family.

However, Syrian refugee children who do not attend school are not the only ones who are facing problems. Those who do go to school are only attending for about three or four hours, as the morning hours get used for other children in Jordan.

Because Syrian refugee children have been missing out on education throughout their time living in Syria, they have much learning to be successful in the Jordanian education system. With such a limited number of school hours available to these children, catching up with the other kids of Jordan is nearly impossible.

As Syrian refugee students struggle to keep up with other kids in Jordan, some are dropping out of the Jordanian education system due to bullying and harassment issues. Girls specifically have been targeted and subjected to this abuse, which leads to these young girls dropping out and being forced into marriage at an early age.

Za’atari has recognized these issues and is working to solve them to make every Syrian refugee feel safe and included in the Jordanian education system. Parents and organizations throughout Za’atari have been seeking resources to better train teachers and obtain higher security in schools.

The efforts being made in Za’atari and other parts of Jordan have been met by an outpouring of support for Syrian refugees through Their World’s #YouPromised campaign.

Their World, a nonprofit working to provide education and necessary resources to children across the globe, started #YouPromised to ensure that the Syrian refugees in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon receive the quality education that they were promised.

You can get involved with the #YouPromised project to amplify the voices of the Syrian refugee children struggling in the Jordanian education system by sending a message to world leaders.

With the work being done in Za’atari and the rest of Jordan as well as Their World’s #YouPromised campaign, Syrian refugee children are closer than ever to receive the quality education that they deserve.

Kassidy Tarala

Photo: Flickr