Views of Adolescent Bhutanese Refugees on Home Learning During School Shutdown Across the Period of COVID-19

Nabaraj Mudwari, Kim Beasy, Carol Murphy, Monica Cuskelly

Abstract


The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is now a global crisis, resulting in the intermittent closure of many schools, worldwide. The school closures are believed to have affected adolescents’ education, particularly for vulnerable adolescents including those from a refugee-background.  The study explores the home learning experiences of adolescent Bhutanese refugees in Tasmania, Australia and draws on social capital theory to interpret findings. Interviews with adolescent Bhutanese refugees revealed four overarching themes: disengagement from learning, the experience of isolation, the complexity of family relationships and motivation through relationships. This article makes an important practical and theoretical contribution to home learning through challenging Putnam’s binary distinction between bonding and bridging and suggesting alternative conceptualisations based on the role of bonding in the creation of bridging social capital.  These findings have potential implications for the development of mitigation measures to support refugee-background students under extraordinary circumstances. 


Keywords


adolescent refugees, COVID-19, education, home learning, social capital.

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References


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