Bulletin of the Japan Comparative Education Society No.50, 2015


Masataka KURIHARA Situation of Local Education Policy for Foreign Children in Japan
Hitomi KUDO Catholic INGO Fe y Alegría in Peru and its Logic of Popular Education
Kaori SUGITA National Identity in Citizenship Education Policy in England: Focusing on National Curriculum Introductory Period
Yuki SHIMAZU Factors Affecting Teacher Implementation of a “Gender-Sensitive Curriculum” in the Agricultural Extension Worker’s Training Program at Agricultural TVET College
Masayasu SAKAGUCHI Education for “Living Together” in the Republic of South Africa: Conflicts of Perceptions at High Schools in the Western Cape Province
Nobuhide SAWAMURA, Kaoru YAMAMOTO & Seiji UTSUMI The Realities of Primary Education and School Management in Post-Conflict South Sudan: Change in the Medium of Instruction

Research Project Report I at the 50th Annual Meeting

Hirotaka NANBU Comparative Education Research in Japan: The Education System and Institutions
Yokuo MURATA Issues in Comparative and International Education: Studies on South East Asian Education
Yoshikazu OGAWA Japanese Comparative Education: Pedagogy and the Faculty of Education
Robert F. ARNOVE Comparative Education: Dimensions and Trends: A Contribution to the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Japan Comparative Education Society
Carlos A. TORRES Global Citizenship, Neoliberalism, Multiculturalism and the Crises of Education: Challenges to Comparative Education

The Open Symposium at the 50th Annual Meeting

Mina HATTORI & Setsuo NISHINO Symposium Discussions on the Role of Religious Leaders and Education Amidst Globalization
Hans-Jürgen MARX The Power of Religion in the Global Village
Yoshitsugu SAWAI Religious Education in Modernity and Its Significance: Focusing on Tenrikyo
Ídiris DANIŞMAZ The Global Education Activities of Turkish Muslims: The Educational Philosophy and Practice of the Hizmet Movement

Research Project Report II at the 50th Annual Meeting

Daisuke SONOYAMA A Comparative Study on Foreign Student Education in Japan and Europe

Book Reviews

Abstracts of Articles

Situation of Local Education Policy for Foreign Children in Japan
(Kagoshima Immaculate Heart University)
 This paper explores the direction of local education policy for foreign children in Japan through survey analysis. There is no existing study that expresses nationwide data regarding policies for the education of foreign children in Japan. According to the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), the number of foreign children in need of instruction was 24,840 in 770 municipalities in 2012.
 In this situation, a survey was conducted on local education policy for foreign children in Japan. Subjects of the survey were the superintendents of the boards of education in 1548 cities, towns and villages. Responses were received from 631 boards of education (40.8% answer rate). The survey contents concern the number of foreign children enrolled in public elementary and junior high schools, support for school attendance and support for non-school-attendance, the Japanese language instruction system, support for junior high school students of foreign nationalities to get into high schools, and consciousness of local boards of education on education policies for foreign children in Japan. These are special problems that children of foreign nationalities must face in the Japanese educational system.
 According to the survey, the percentage of municipalities in which foreign children attend school is just below 60%. The percentage of municipalities in which foreign children in need of Japanese instruction attend school is a little over 40%. This means that local education policy for foreign children has become a matter on which many local boards of education need to think seriously.
 Local boards of education send information packets to foreign parents whose child will begin school the following year. The percentage of boards of education using some foreign languages for these guides is 32.7%. The percentage of boards of education that do not hold a meeting for school attendance is 94.9%. The percentage of boards of education that have conducted surveys on non-school-attendance is 12.4%.
 With respect to Japanese language instruction, many boards of education dispatch an instructor to elementary or junior high schools which foreign children in need of such instruction attend. In addition, the percentage of boards of education providing opportunities for foreign children to study their mother tongue is 12.5%.
 The percentage of boards of education that check how many foreign students get into high schools is a little under 20%. The percentage of junior high school students of foreign nationalities getting into high schools is about 80%. The percentage of boards of education holding course guidance for junior high school students of foreign nationalities is less than 10%.
 In such circumstances, what kinds of local board of education carry out a policy for foreign children? Based on the analysis of this paper, policy tends to be carried out as the scale of foreign population becomes greater. Therefore, policies for foreign children depend on the demographic situation of local areas and governments, leading to a difference among local governments. Boards of education in Japan arrange policies for foreign children despite the lack of any clear nationwide legislative guidance. What results is an incongruent and inconsistent situation that is in immediate need of attention.
 Finally, an indication of the future direction of local education policy for foreign children is provided through recent tendencies within and among boards of education. Most boards of education tend to regard foreign children in public schools as policy objects. On the other hand, most boards of education do not tend to consider that they need to grasp the situation of the foreign nationals’ schools in Japan. This means that levels of administration excluding boards of education need to establish and implement a policy for foreign children lest they be isolated from the benefits of the educational enterprise.
 Education policy for foreign children should be clarified. Rethinking governance and decentralization is demanded in education policy for foreign children in Japan.
Catholic INGO Fe y Alegría in Peru and its Logic of Popular Education
Hitomi KUDO
(JSPS Research Fellow)
 This paper examines the effect of being Catholic on the development of the Fe y Alegría (Faith and Joy) movement in Peru and its rationale for using the term “Popular Education” in the sphere of schooling.
 Fe y Alegría is an international non-governmental organization (INGO) led by the Society of Jesus, which works mainly in Latin America. Father José María Vélaz founded its first school in a shantytown of Caracas (Venezuela) in 1955.
 One of Fe y Alegría’s well-known slogans is “Fe y Alegría starts where the pavement ends, where drinking water does not drip, where the city loses its name”. As this slogan suggests, Fe y Alegría started in a shantytown that was developed by migrants from rural areas. Especially after World War II, many people migrated from rural areas to the outskirts of the cities in Latin America. In these peripheral areas, missionaries preached the catechism to poor people, who were traditionally largely ignored by the Catholic Church. These activities gave birth to the Theology of Liberation in Latin America. Fe y Alegría was born in these circumstances.
 Fe y Alegría provides formal education to more than 580,000 students and has more than 1,120,000 participants in total, including other programs, such as non-formal education and radio programs in 19 countries as of 2012. At present, Fe y Alegría schools are mainly public or subsidized-private, depending each country’s respective historical relationship with the Catholic Church. In Peru, under an agreement between Fe y Alegría and the Ministry of Education, teachers are employed in public schools whether or the school principal is religious.
 Key factors behind the development of Fe y Alegría are its religious, national and international networks. Within its religious network, the Society of Jesus and many other religious congregations have assumed the management of schools. These contribute to the consistent implementation of educational policy among schools. The network of each religious congregation is effective in sharing experiences with members in other countries and to receiving donations from congregations or the country where the religious person was born.
 At the international level, the International Federation of Fe y Alegría (Federación Internacional de Fe y Alegría: FIFYA) holds an annual congress to share experiences, information and ideals. At the national level, each country has a National Office that concludes agreements with each government to receive subsidies. In Peru, the National Office offers teacher training, original curriculum, and supervision by specialists. These mechanisms of support contribute to improve the quality of educational provision.
 The religious network and Fe y Alegría’s international and national networks are interrelated. According to one secular school principal, there is no difference between Fe y Alegría schools led by religious authorities and those headed by secular school principals, because the Society of Jesus leads the network as a whole.
 Considering the development of Fe y Alegría from the perspective of its philosophy, it defines itself as “the Movement of Popular Education and Social Promotion”. Popular Education in Latin America is influenced theoretically and methodologically by the work of Paulo Freire, and is generally considered to be in the field of adult and non-formal education. Popular Education is an educational mode for poor and socially oppressed people, not for the elites. It “raises learner’s political consciousness” for the goal of transforming society. In its philosophy, learners and educators should have horizontal relationships and the learners’ existing knowledge is considered to be important.
 On the other hand, at the International Congress of FIFYA in 2001, Fe y Alegría described Popular Education as being defined by neither type of learner nor method, but by its intent for transforming the society to be more democratic and just.
 According to Bastos (1981), Fe y Alegría opts for Popular Education in formal education, with the aim of offering certified education to students in marginalized areas of the city. Because non-formal education cannot provide the official certification necessary for poor children to get jobs, Fe y Alegría attaches importance to formal education and has increased the number of schools accordingly. Furthermore, rather than stressing political and ideological features within general Popular Education, Fe y Alegría emphasizes the Christian element.
 In the half century since their foundation, communities around the Fe y Alegría schools have changed and the economic situation of parents has improved. However, school principals mentioned that still they need parents to pay more attention to the education of their children. Regarding the goal of transforming communities around the school, there are classes and projects for students to become more aware of the environment and social realities. Schools also offer “school for parents” to teach better communication with their children, because many families have problems with domestic violence and complex relationships within and among families. Schools open their doors to community members, offering the teaching of the catechism.
 Nowadays, in addition to quantitative considerations, Fe y Alegría focuses on the quality of education for the poor. One of the consequences of this approach is better test scores for Fe y Alegría’s schools compared with other public schools.
 Fe y Alegría uses the term “Popular Education” as a reflection of its intent to transform society gradually through quality formal schooling, rather than immediate political action. “Popular Education” also has been used as a rationale to found more schools in underprivileged areas. Ironically, this depiction may weaken the appeal of Popular Education as being an alternative to traditional schooling. However, to date Fe y Alegría’s Popular Education has proven a realistic and effective schooling option for social change.
National Identity in Citizenship Education Policy in England: Focusing on National Curriculum Introductory Period
(Graduate Student, University of Tsukuba)
 Since 1990, promoting citizenship through education was recognized as an important educational issue in many countries. In England, education for citizenship was introduced as one of the cross-curricular themes after introduction of the national curriculum following the Education Reform Act 1988. Later, citizenship education became a statutory subject in the national curriculum for secondary education from 2002. However, in the process of secondary national curriculum review from 2005, there was much debate on how to promote ‘shared’ values among pupils, based on British national identity, through citizenship education.
 This paper examines the discussion over national identity in citizenship education policy in England, focusing on the National Curriculum introductory period. In 1990 the Commission on Citizenship published a report, “Encouraging Citizenship” making recommendations on citizenship education in schools. After that, “Curriculum Guidance 8: Education for Citizenship” was published by the National Curriculum Council.
 The link between citizenship education and national identity under the Conservative government has not received a great deal of attention. Previous work has pointed out a lack of common core of civic principles and values that command national allegiance and are transmitted to students through schools and elsewhere in society. Through an analysis of the discussion of the report, it is shown why it was difficult to find a connection between citizenship education and national identity at that time.
 First, this paper explains the impact of the introduction of the national curriculum in the English context. The aim of the introduction was to raise pupils’ performance. At the same time, the Education Reform Act 1988 brought much authority to the Secretary of State for Education and Science to decide the contents of national curriculum subjects. The decision of the contents in the curriculum became a national policy agenda. In this period, the transmission of British heritage and culture was debated in relation with history, English and religious education. Arguments about national identity have begun, if not been perpetuated, since education for citizenship was incorporated as a new curriculum element.
 Second, from the discussion in the Commission meetings, it is evident that the Commission became interested in legal aspects of citizenship such as the rights and status of citizens when considering the definition of “active citizenship”. During the period from January 1989 to July 1990, the Commission held seven meetings and two seminars, and the Commission Working Party met regularly. The main aim of the Commission was to consider how to encourage and recognize active citizenship in society. At the Commission meetings, it was suggested that as a starting point the Commission should adopt the theoretical framework of T. H. Marshall. Through the review process of legal aspects of citizenship, the Commission faced the origin of citizenship in the British Empire that was beyond the framework of United Kingdom (UK). The Commission’s chairman thought that a legal aspect was essential, and that substantive rights should be made clear as a basis for social and political participation for people in the UK.
 Third, this paper explains that discussion had widened the definition of “active citizenship” to the definition of “citizenship” in the final version of the Commission’s report. The Commission recommended that education for citizenship should be implemented through the framework of international recommendations on human rights education as proposed by the Council of Europe. This suggests that there was a position to recognize the similarity between the principles of the British system and those of basic human rights. The plurality of the legal framework was also admired. On the other hand, the Commission came to recognize the complexity of political membership in the UK and the ambiguity of associated rights, understanding this situation to represent a “problem”. As a political community based on the national framework could not be clearly defined, the substance of rights was founded on international legal frameworks. This situation led to the perception that many individuals in the UK belong to multi-layered communities, such as national, European and world community.
 This paper explains that the Commission’s view was effectively reflected in the “Curriculum Guidance 8: Education for Citizenship”. In line with the recommendations of the Commission’s report, the National Curriculum Council proposed guidance for citizenship education. In this curriculum guidance, it highlighted the importance of international frameworks such as the European Convention on Human Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in promoting citizenship through education. It also recognized that people live in a world that is characterized as multi-layered communities. Thus, people simultaneously belong to many kinds of communities.
 In conclusion, this paper points out that the reason citizenship education was not linked to national identity is that the Commission recognized the difficulty to define citizenship within a national framework, stemming from the vast imperial legacy of the UK. It also suggests that the Commission perceived the imperial history behind citizenship in the UK in a negative light. A concrete understanding of this point is essential in successfully analyzing future debates on citizenship education policies in England.
Factors Affecting Teacher Implementation of a “Gender-Sensitive Curriculum” in the Agricultural Extension Worker’s Training Program at Agricultural TVET College
(Graduate Student, Nagoya University)
 This research focuses on gender-sensitive curriculum at Agricultural Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ATVET) colleges in Ethiopia to find out how college teachers implement the curriculum and what factors are affecting its implementation. The study also focuses on what students learn from the curriculum.
 ATVET colleges are senior-secondary level public educational institutions that aim to train agricultural extension workers operating in each village. Agricultural extension is one of the methods of adult non-formal education for farmers to introduce them to new agricultural technologies and information. Since Ethiopia is one of the countries that highly depends on the agricultural sector, accounting for 41% of its GDP and 85% of its total employment, the government considers agriculture to be key for national development and places special emphasis on the agricultural extension system. Agricultural extension is considered the most important tool for improving farmers’ productivity and production. However, the participation of women in agricultural extension is very low because most of the farmers believe that this kind of work is for men. The government therefore developed a gender-sensitive curriculum for ATVET colleges as one of the strategies aimed at making agricultural extension more women-friendly.
 According to officials at the Ministry of Agriculture, the gender-sensitive curriculum consists of three elements: 1) providing a gender and development course; 2) providing gender-related activities through a gender office at each ATVET college; and 3) making classes gender-sensitive by each teacher. However, the teachers can decide the details of the content of the curriculum, especially with regard to making classes gender-sensitive. While the word “gender” contains several meanings, each teacher understands the meaning of gender-sensitive curriculum and implements it in his or her own way according to their personal backgrounds and experiences. Therefore, what happens at ATVET colleges should be analyzed carefully. There is no study focusing on gender issues in education and training at ATVET college. This research contributes to finding out what happens on-site and to enhance the curriculum, which is important to make the agricultural extension more women-friendly.
 In-depth interview were conducted with 16 teachers at two ATVET colleges, twice per person. The teachers were selected according to the department and subjects taught (nine teachers from specialized subjects and seven teachers from common subjects). The common subjects are gender and development, communication, business practices, and civics and ethical education. Also, group discussions were conducted with 23 students. All the interviews and group discussions were recorded and transcribed with their permission.
 According to the interviews, the teachers implemented gender-sensitive curriculum in different ways, which can be categorized into four groups: 1) providing gender and development as a subject; 2) having out-of-classroom activities for female students; 3) prioritizing female students in each subject; and 4) including gender and female-related content in each subject. What they implement is closely related to their assigned subjects. Gender course teachers implement 1 and 2, specialized subject teachers implement and other common subject (communication, business practices, and civics and ethical education) teachers implement 3 and 4.
 The common subject teachers, including gender and development instructors, tend to discuss what they teach under the name of curriculum. They believe that it is important for the students to learn gender-related knowledge since they will work for rural women. The teachers portray rural women as oppressed, uneducated, and passive people who must get out of the social condition of gender inequality by possessing knowledge from the agricultural extension workers. Therefore, they think providing gender-related knowledge to the students is the first step to empowering rural women. On the other hand, the specialized subject teachers tend to concentrate on teaching methodology rather than content. They focus on the female students and try to empower them by prioritizing them in their classes. This is because the female students tend to get lower grades in specialized subjects compared to the male students. The specialized subject teachers believe empowering the female students and raining them, as female extension workers possessing the equal skills and knowledge with male extension workers will contribute to the rural women. This is because those female students will be role models for rural women.
 However, the gender-related knowledge that is taught by the common subject teachers is not based on the actual situation in the rural areas. Since none of the common subject teachers have working experience in the rural areas, what they teach is based on information from books or other media. Therefore, the topics that they teach under the name of gender-sensitive curriculum often do not fit the actual situation in the field. In contrast to the common subject teachers, there are some among the specialized subject teachers who have working experience in rural areas. During the interviews, they offered many ideas about gender in rural areas based on their experiences. Although those ideas are more realistic and related to agricultural extension, none of them were able to effectively put their experiences into the content of the subject, meaning that there is no chance to utilize their experience. In brief, what the students learn from the gender-sensitive curriculum often is not useful when they become agricultural extension workers. Unfortunately, therefore, gender-sensitive curriculum as it is presently implemented fails to benefit human resources required in rural areas.
Education for “Living Together” in the Republic of South Africa: Conflicts of Perceptions at High Schools in the Western Cape Province
(Graduate Student, University of Tsukuba / JSPS Research Fellow)
 The purpose of this article is to consider conflicts of perceptions in education for “living together” in the Republic of South Africa (RSA) by analysing interview data which was collected at high schools in the province of the Western Cape.
 Recently, various studies have been conducted to consider what it means for people to “live together” with others in society. One of the theories these studies suggest is that when considering the concept of “living together” (or the concept of a “living together society”) as the concept which focuses on how to realise “social unity in diversity”, it can only be thought of as a continuing process rather something which can actually be achieved. This is because when trying to respect the differences of people, the possibility of having conflicts in society becomes high; therefore, whenever conflicts arise, the concept of “living together” needs to be reformed. In this sense, the concept of “living together” can not only be seen as a “beautiful” or “harmonious” concept, but as an “unbeautiful” or “disharmonious” one due to the conflict in question. From current discussions on the concept of “living together”, and when analysing education for “living together”, this article focuses on how conflicts appear in the actual practice of “living together” and how they may be solved.
 In order to enhance the validity of studies on the concept of “living together”, it is necessary to consider as many contexts as possible. One such context can be seen in RSA, where the legacy of apartheid is being addressed in the various fields of society.
 In post-apartheid RSA, it has been a challenge to overcome conflicts between different groups of people, particularly those based on tensions that emerged during the apartheid era. In other words, how victims and perpetrators of apartheid can “live together” has become one of the RSA’s most important concerns in the post-apartheid era. Therefore various attempts have been made to resolve this issue, especially in the educational field.
 Amongst all the educational reconstructions in post-apartheid RSA, the introduction of “Life Orientation” as a compulsory subject in the 2000s can be said to be one of the most significant attempts at “living together”. This is because Life Orientation is a new and unique subject in the RSA which deals with actual issues in society and aims to enable learners to know how to exercise their constitutional rights and responsibilities, to respect the rights of others, and to value diversity, health and well-being.
 This article explains that Life Orientation at the high school phase in the RSA can be regarded as one of the most meaningful examples of education for “living together”, because it tries to equip learners with skills that are necessary for realising the principles of the RSA Constitution - ones which emphasise anti-discrimination and social unity in diversity. In order to examine the characteristics of education for “living together” in the current RSA, this article focuses on educators’ and learners’ discourses related to Life Orientation when analysing interview data.
 Interview data was collected at three high schools in the province of the Western Cape in 2012 and 2013. Participants were learners, Life Orientation educators and administrative educators (semi-structured interviews were conducted in English). The aim of the interview was to reveal how education and learning for “living together” are taking place at high schools in the current RSA by asking questions such as “What do you imagine when you hear the term “living together society?” and “What do you think is the key (or the obstacle) to [realising a] “living together society?”
 This article discusses several results revealed by the above research. Firstly, it discusses a conflict of perception between those who believe that affirmative action is discrimination since it emphasises the category of “race”, and those who believe that affirmative action is necessary in the current RSA given its legacy of apartheid. Secondly, this article discusses a conflict of perception between those who believe that discrimination in a “joking” way can be a positive thing since it may bring people closer, and those who believe that any form of discrimination should not be allowed since even “jokes” can hurt people. Thirdly, this article discusses that the reason why conflicts of perception exist is because there is an assumption that people’s mind-sets should be tolerated and respected. Under this assumption, therefore, education does not focus mainly on changing the mind-sets of people but rather on educating learners the skills to be able to overcome the damage incurred from actual conflicts.
 Finally, from the above analysis, this article narrows in on particular characteristics of education for “living together” in the current RSA. Firstly, it discusses that since the RSA has decided to build a new society with the victims and the perpetrators of apartheid, “living together” in the post-apartheid era of the new RSA has consisted of conflicts between different kinds of people since its foundation. As such, this article discusses that because of the severe reality of the current RSA, education for “living together” at high school is conducted by not focusing on spreading the “beautiful” images of “living together” but on equipping learners with the skills to be able to “survive together” with others in actual society. Secondly, this article discusses that although the effects from the past are diverse, social unity is trying to be achieved by sharing the perception that everyone in the RSA is influenced by the country’s past. Thirdly, this article reinforces the theory of “living together” by pointing out that the current RSA’s practices are built on the assumption that human beings make “mistakes”.
The Realities of Primary Education and School Management in Post-Conflict South Sudan: Change in the Medium of Instruction
Nobuhide SAWAMURA (Osaka University)
Kaoru YAMAMOTO (Graduate Student, Osaka University)
Seiji UTSUMI (Kyoto Women’s University)
 South Sudan obtained independence in 2011 after decades of conflict. This conflict partly resulted from a war against the Arab-led Sudanese government by non-Arab anti-government Africans, i.e. the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA). Due to the conflict, the vast majority of people missed educational opportunities.
 In post-conflict countries, it often happens that the new government introduces the new medium of instruction along with replacing the official language. In South Sudan, it was changed from Arabic to English. This move had a great impact on people’s daily lives and school education, particularly teachers. The international community is keen in providing South Sudan with significant assistance, but this has also created an aid-dependency syndrome, particularly in the situation where administrative capacity is considerably low. A high-ranking official in the Ministry of Education confessed during a donor meeting that, “We understand how to fight a war, but we do not know how to provide education. Therefore there are no other ways except to ask for your help.” External consultants have collected essential educational data, and aid agencies and their affiliated researchers have conducted an education sector study. However, independent researchers working ln education are very rare because of tight security in the country. Aid-related researchers conduct studies in order to grasp overall pictures of education systems, yet while focusing on quantitative macro data pay little attention to individual schools. Although educational statistics appear to be rich in information, the realities in schools are not as easily measurable. Moreover, there are always limitations in accuracy and validity in such quantitative figures.
 The purpose of this study is to explore the realities of primary education in South Sudan from the perspectives of teachers, students and parents by employing a qualitative approach. We particularly focus on the impact of changing the medium of instruction on the operation and management of individual schools, and people’s behavior towards education. Fieldwork was carried out twice in 2013 for a total period of 4 weeks, which principally covered the four primary schools located in Juba County. Interviews were made among some fifty stakeholders. We also observed the operation and management of schools and the deployment of teachers with particular attention to their working conditions and teaching styles in class.
 This study revealed the following five observations, which have occurred due to the change in the medium of instruction: (1) The emergence of ‘Arabic-pattern’, ‘English-pattern’ and volunteer teachers: Arabic or English-pattern teachers are categorized based on the language taught in secondary schools or/and teacher training institutes. Volunteer teachers, who are employed and paid by individual schools, are all English-pattern. They are expected to teach in the upper-grade classes where Arabic-type teachers cannot teach since the medium of instruction is English. (2) A disproportionate number of deployed teachers and a prevalence of teacher absenteeism: Efficient deployment of teachers remains challenging. Arabic-pattern teachers are limited in their ability to communicate in English. There is often an excess of teachers in urban schools in order for the Arabic-pattern teachers to remain. On the other hand, many rural schools lack teachers and absenteeism is common partly because of the poor public transportation system. (3) The collection of school management funds and the burden of remuneration for volunteer teachers: The government encourages cost sharing in education. Each school needs to employ English-pattern volunteer teachers to substitute for Arabic-pattern teachers. The personnel expenses for volunteer teachers have to be covered by each school and the financial burden on managing a school is significant, particularly in rural schools. (4) An influx in the enrollment of over-aged children, since most of them missed school in the duration of the conflict. The mass migration of families with children has been taking place since the conflict. For example, children who are educated in Khartoum can speak only Arabic, but at school in Juba they are taught in English. This language barrier hinders effective learning and sometimes results in grade repetition. (5) The perception of education as a lucrative business venture and the rise of private schools: English-medium private schools are currently booming. In Juba County, for example, the number of private schools exceeds that of government schools. Even poor families are concerned with quality of education provided. They are willing to pay school fees and send their children to private schools as the quality of such school is perceived to be better. This quality frequently applies to the quality of English language instruction.
 This research is limited by the imbalance of informants in terms of language pattern; interviews primarily covered English-pattern teachers. Therefore, further study should consider the perspectives and classroom teaching of Arabic-pattern teachers, who comprise the majority of South Sudanese teachers, along with those of English-pattern teachers, and examine what kinds of difficulties their students have been facing in class. Tight security also hindered fieldwork outside Juba County, making it difficult to observe schools operating in more difficult circumstances. Nevertheless, this study is of great value in exposing the realities of individual schools through a case study in post-conflict South Sudan.
 It is often said that South Sudan is “a nation thirsty for education and learning” by having been denied by such opportunities for many years. A young female teacher mentioned that, “Working with my fellow teachers in school is enjoyable. The staff members are like friends and brothers/sisters regardless of their ethnicities. We are like a big family.” School is a space that secures equity and equality for children, making an impact on all people, and appears to enhance social cohesion in society. School can and must have a potential role of relieving the current predicament of South Sudan.
Copyright (C) Japan Comparative Education Society, All Rights Reserved, 2001-2012.