A (Partial) Post-conflict Educational Success Story? Colombia

  • Clive HarberEmail author


This chapter presents a detailed country case study of one possible national success story in terms of post-conflict educational reform. It begins by discussing in detail the internal (not externally imposed) origins, nature and long-term development of the internationally funded and supported Escuela Nueva (New School) initiative since its origins in the mid-1970s as a school quality improvement project rather than an education for peace programme. It then discusses the Classrooms in Peace initiative in some detail before going on to examine both the Hermes Programme and the Youth Peace Builders Project. It discusses both evidence of success based on a fifty-year period of attempted change in Colombian schools and ongoing issues and negative problems such as low levels of student citizenship competencies, the problematic nature of school textbooks, continuing violence in schools, the persistence of many authoritarian, conventional schools which use teacher-led teaching methods, a competitive in-school ethos and inequalities between the public and the private sectors. Thus, while there has been successful educational change over the 50-year period of war till 2016 and after, transformation is still far from complete or universal.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EducationUniversity of BirminghamBirminghamUK

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