This case study offers an overview of educational response during East Timor’s emergency and transition periods, from 1999 to early 2003. It explores not only the activities that have taken place in East Timor itself, but also includes educational interventions made in West Timor on behalf of refugee populations. An understanding of these various educational efforts is of interest in that they encompass, over a rather short period, a range of emergency phases and scenarios. These include emergency education response for refugees and returnees, as well as on-going support for education in two very different rehabilitation contexts. [...] This study attempts to both identify highlights in educational response in the midst of one particular crisis and to summarize key learning points that can potentially be applied in other situations. Towards these ends, the following aspects are explored: (a) Portuguese and Indonesian influences on education in the East Timor; (b) educational impact of the emergency and priority needs identified; (c) approaches to education for refugees displaced to West Timor; (d) efforts at initial educational response in East Timor; (e) governance in East Timor and its influence on educational reconstruction; (f) core initiatives contributing to restarting the education system and local schools; (g) key questions of policy for the East Timorese education system; and (h) educational transitions on independence – integration of refugees in West Timor and a new government in East Timor.
Education in emergencies and reconstruction