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ERIC Number: EJ959722
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Mar
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 59
ISSN: ISSN-1477-8785
Citizenship Education as an Educational Outcome for Young People in Care: A Phenomenological Account
Spiteri, Damian
Theory and Research in Education, v10 n1 p39-55 Mar 2012
This qualitative study presents a retrospective analysis of how a cohort of young men, who as boys were assigned to residential care in Malta, perceive the citizenship education that they received while "in care" as having empowered them--as boys, adolescents, and eventually as young adults. Rather than focusing on citizenship education that is derived from formal schooling, this study is focused on analysing the meaning that the participants attributed to experiences of daily living at the care home alongside the cooperative activities that were organized for them by the staff so as to enable them to learn about one another, share responsibilities, and develop feelings of group-solidarity among themselves. The study thereby explores whether the participants see themselves as having an increased repertoire of social competencies, including cooperative decision-making and the ability to forge effective interpersonal relationships, as a result of their being in care. Using an ecosystemic approach, it looks into how other related agents of socialization including their schooling also had a bearing on their lives. The study uses interviews and focus groups to give the participants a "voice" in describing reality as they perceive and understand it. It shows that, to provide meaningful citizenship education to vulnerable, at-risk children and young people, it is important that they are provided with skills and opportunities to share personal stories and events with one another, and to support each other's growth. Since boys in care can be extremely conscious that they are in care, this implies that effort needs to be made to help them foster greater links with the outside community, particularly with their family, friends and other adults. It is therefore recommended that young people in care are given opportunities to develop greater self-confidence as this would allow them to promote greater cohesion among themselves and empower them to be more agentic and proactive in wider society
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Malta