Early learning attainments of children of naturalized citizens of refugee backgrounds in the sub-Saharan region: Evidence from Tanzania
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Research has consistently indicated that children of naturalized citizens from refugee backgrounds lag in most indicators of development. The disparities are more nuanced in contexts with limited educational resources, such as the sub-Saharan region of Africa. However, that is not the case with children of naturalized citizens from refugee backgrounds of Burundian origin living in Tanzania. The early learning attainment of these children is comparable to children from more advantaged urban majority groups. In this article, I discuss the role of the home learning environment and families' socioeconomic status in children's development of early math and reading skills by linking global and local perspectives. Challenges facing children from this group in Tanzania include issues related to curriculum, cultural practices and parental beliefs, mastery of Kiswahili, and the quality of teachers in the early grades. In light of the evidence, I argue for improvements in learning experiences and recommend research to inform policy and improve practice.