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Presentation
First week of school after the 1994 Rwandan genocide: the case of students in public secondary schools in Kigali
3rd Global Conference on Genocide: Knowing the Past, Safeguarding the Future (2012)
  • Musa W Olaka, University of South Florida
Abstract
How are teenage students who have just survived a genocide and witnessed human atrocities on a mass scale scaffolded to get back into a school learning environment and what mechanisms do schools put in place when these students are placed in the same class or physical space with other students who themselves or their parents were perpetrators or perceived perpetrators of a genocide? Five months after the onset of the 1994 Rwandan genocide, public schools were reopened yet most of the trained teachers had been killed during the genocide while others were in prison or in exile. Almost all secondary schools had to be staffed with people who had no formal education in pedagogy or counseling traumatized persons. Only one third of the teachers had formal education in pedagogy. The purpose of this paper is to highlight how public secondary schools in Kigali, Rwanda were able to cope with highly radicalized and traumatized students during the first week of school immediately after the genocide. This first week is critical in creating a harmonious learning environment in the school thereafter. An exploratory study was undertaken in which oral interviews were conducted and data collected from 9 students who were in secondary schools in Kigali when the schools opened for the first time after the 1994 genocide.
Keywords
  • Genocide Rwanda Schools,
  • Students Trauma Rwanda,
  • Trauma genocide Rwanda
Publication Date
June 30, 2012
Citation Information
Musa W Olaka. "First week of school after the 1994 Rwandan genocide: the case of students in public secondary schools in Kigali" 3rd Global Conference on Genocide: Knowing the Past, Safeguarding the Future (2012)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/musa_olaka/7/