Najjuma, Rovincer (2011)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.
This qualitative, multiple methods case study concerns the effectiveness of Revitalising Education Participation and Learning in Conflict affected Areas-Peace Education Programme (REPLICA-PEP). There is currently limited evidence regarding the effectiveness of peace education programmes in the context of post-conflict formal schooling.
This study therefore set out to explore the effectiveness of REPLICA-PEP and to gain insight into the reality of the current practice of peace education in schools in a post-conflict context in Northern Uganda. The school is one of the places where children learn values, attitudes and behaviour, schooling is often criticised for using symbolic violence to maintain and reinforce different forms of violence including physical violence. This study explores theoretical and practical aspects of peace education and key issues relevant to the effectiveness of peace education programmes, including the role and influence of formal schooling in a post-conflict context.
A combination of qualitative methods (interviews, observation and documentary analysis) were employed to examine REPLICA-PEP effectiveness and its impact on pupils’ knowledge, attitudes, skills and behaviour. The results show that, although some traces of impact were found in pupils’ awareness of: the dangers of using violence; non-violent conflict resolution alternatives; and attitude change to non-violent conflict resolution, pupils did not develop empathy, self-control, competences and skills for non-violent conflict resolution. Interrogation of qualitative data about the REPLICA-PEP implementation process and activities in the schools have led to the generation of theoretically-informed and empirically-grounded recommendations which integrate and accommodate the nature of formal schooling in a post-conflict context and programme design features for improving the effectiveness of peace education programmes. It has also laid the ground for future research on what is possible in terms of strategies to facilitate and promote pupil peace building activities in post-conflict formal schooling contexts such as peace-related pupil voice, documentation and action.
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