A Hermeneutic Phenomenological Inquiry: Probing Challenges and Prospects of Left-behind Children Education in the Northern Shaanxi Province, China

Lin Ge, Douglas Durst


This research presents the lived experience of left-behind children living in the northern Shaanxi province, China. Herein hermeneutic phenomenological inquiry is employed to identify the main challenges faced by those left-behind children who are in the primary school stage and underlying causes. Unstructured observations in classroom and recess sessions are conducted. Ten left-behind children in the age range from 9-13 years, their guardians, and teachers in two towns are interviewed. The findings report the personal feelings and experiences of these children, including academic skills, socializing abilities, life, and psychological stress. Recommendations for policy and practice are offered. Arguably, the findings in the study might not only potentially serve as viable targets for universal preventive interventions and socially inclusive education of the group but also facilitate a more supportive and inclusive life and educational process for similarly marginalized groups outside China.

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