VI-5. “The Context of Basic Education Reconstruction in Cambodia after the Pol Pot Regime: Social Background and Position of Teachers and Schooling” (H26 FY2014)

  • Project Leader : Senda Sayaka (Nagoya University, Graduate School of Education and Human Development)

Outline of Research

This research will examine the social background and position of basic education after the Pol Pot regime (1975-1979) as a context of reconstruction. In this regime, a huge number of teachers were lost and schooling was suspended. This research needs to explore books related to policy, society and culture in 1980’s Cambodia and newspapers such as “Kampuchea” which are microfilms stored at the Center for Southeast Asia Studies Library. Collecting data will mainly will be carried in August and on other subsequent dates, where necessary.


The purpose of this research is to examine the social context of the reconstruction of basic education in the People’s Republic of Kampuchea (1979-1989), after the Pol Pot regime. The aim of my Ph.D research is identifying by whom and in what way was basic education was reconstructed in this era. Another aim is to rethink Cambodian education history as a living history by teachers and post-teachers based on their life history interviews. Related with my Ph.D research, this research will investigate how teachers dealt with their social positions and social life after the Pol Pot regime and how they valued basic education in their society.

There are few studies about Cambodian school history in this era. There are two main reasons. The first is that the Pol Pot regime distanced itself from international society. Second, the People’s Republic of Kampuchea prohibited research by Western block researchers.

This research will also try to interpret Cambodian local education and examine the meaning of education reconstruction, which formulated the present basic education structure, through not only education policy, but also the social context of teachers and schooling. This research is important to understand the present teachers’ thoughts and practices and features of Cambodian local educational practices. It will make a contribution not only to international corporation for education rooted in local contexts, but also to thinking the future of the pragmatic application of teacher training or teacher evaluations.

Junior High School Teacher Training Center in Cambodia

Primary School Teacher Training Center in Cambodia