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Children's Rights and the Educational Experience of low German Mennonite Youth in Alberta Open Access


Other title
Low German Mennonite
children's rights
child labour
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Van Beers, Rae Ann S.
Supervisor and department
Shultz, Lynette (Department of Educational Policy Studies
Examining committee member and department
Johnston, Ingrid (Department of Secondary Education)
Abdi, Ali (Department of Educational Policy Studies)
Department of Educational Policy Studies
Theoretical, Cultural and International Studies in Education
Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Education
Degree level
The educational experiences of Low German Mennonite youth are greatly impacted by other aspects of their lives, revealing the importance of studying education in relation to the societal, cultural, educational, and familial contexts in which youth function. This qualitative research attempted to provide a forum for the voices of these youth to be heard. Student interviews and newspaper items provided rich data that spoke to the experiences of this distinct population. Utilizing a critical children’s rights framework for the study allowed for a deeper understanding of the societal complexities as they converged with education. Work, family obligations, other forms of schooling, and the fear of cultural change all appear to have significant influence on the education that Mennonite youth receive in Alberta. Highlighting these factors through the lens of the best interests of the child principle reveals the importance of utilizing children’s perspectives when decisions are made concerning these youth.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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