Child Labour and School Attendance in Turkey

Ozlem Erden

Forced Migration Review, Issue 60, March 2019


The author argues that the emphasis on the ‘self-sufficiency’ of Syrian refugees in Turkey “trivialises education in comparison with work and fosters a belief among Syrian adults and children that education will not immediately improve their quality of life and is therefore less important than gaining skills for work” leading to high drop out rates and child labor, particularly among Syrian boys. School teachers and administrators attribute high drop out rates and child labor among Syrian refugee children to shortcomings in Turkish school enrollment and attendance policies, which makes it difficult to track the attendance of refugee children without identity documents.