New Session: Schools in the Pacific
Organizer: Rachel Emerine Hicks
Friday, February 10, 2:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., Orchid 1
This session seeks to renew a conversation on the schooling systems within the Pacific Islands, particularly at the primary and secondary levels (although tertiary level contributions are also welcome). Whether from personal experience at schools or from research about the schooling systems, in this session, I hope to discuss how schools throughout the Pacific become sites of both cultural preservation and cultural change. How does schooling prepare (or not) students for entering the workplace or returning to their village? How does schooling change students' understanding of their home cultures and villages? How is the access to technology in urban centers and schools changing the way students learn and interact with their traditional values?
Along with discussing the general role of schools in their communities, this session will look at some of the school policy changes throughout the Pacific over the past decade. Some of these changes include: “fee free” education, switch from outcome based to standard based education, beginning or ending schooling in local languages, and the introduction of technology into the classrooms. In this session, I hope to examine the effects of these changes in places where they have been implemented.
In Kaua‘i, this session will begin as a dialogue around these issues and if enough interest exists, we will discuss the potential for a publication in the subsequent years. Feel free to contact me with any questions, comments, or interests in this subject.
Rachel Hicks, University of California–San Diego <firstname.lastname@example.org>