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This study explores the role of education providers in formal and informal settings in the West Bank in developing ideas and practices of citizenship and global citizenship among young Palestinians. While there has been extensive research on citizenship and global citizenship education in global North settings, less attention has been paid to it outside these contexts. This has reinforced the conflation of global citizenship with affluence and mobility, and ignored diverse struggles for citizenship and education, which do not conform to established models and understandings. The case of Palestine provides a unique lens on citizenship education, given its struggle for statehood and the challenges occupation presents to everyday survival. It is important that approaches and struggles for global citizenship in such a context are not written out of explorations of education for citizenship and global citizenship. Rather, paying attention to them reveals assumptions in the ways citizenship and global citizenship are conceptualised, as well in the ways experiences in conflict settings are often parochialised in scholarship and policy making.
This paper takes as it starting point, the Palestinian Ministry of Education’s statement on education and core citizen values. This statement is conceptualised in terms of its particular openness to difference in the context of threats to Palestinian identity and security. The paper then explores the mediation and translation of these practices amongst schools and informal education providers. This provides an opportunity to explore the different ways notions of citizenship are constructed through education, and how these connect to efforts to articulate visions and practices of sustainable development in Palestine. The paper draws on qualitative data collected with state officials, schools and civil society organisations, as well as analysis of policy and curricula documentation. It argues that there is a need to be more attentive to the multiple economies of education for citizenship and global citizenship in conflict settings, and to be attentive to the multiple languages and expressions of global citizenship that exist beyond the global North.
The overarching questions that direct this study are:
1- What are the core citizenship values that the Palestinian Ministry of Education is looking to develop in young Palestinians?
2- How are these core citizenship values translated into practice in schools and informal settings?
To gain more understandings and meanings of citizenship and global citizenship education and its practices among young Palestinians, a qualitative approach is implemented using the following data tools:
- Content analysis of policy documents and teachers’ lesson plans
- Teachers, and policy officials’ interviews are to help in identifying core citizenship and global citizenship values.
- School visits and classroom observations to help view the process through which those citizenship and global citizenship values are translated into practice.
The presentation of the findings will be formulated and guided based on three core conceptual dimension of global citizenship, which include cognitive, socio-emotional and the behavioural one, in addition to highlighting the approach of citizenship and global citizenship implementation in that context.