The Essence of Education in Disruptive COVID-19 Crisis: Capturing the Lived Experience of College Students in the Philippines
Asserting a responsive, appropriate, and relevant education has historically always been a problem for most learners from marginalized groups. This extant inequality has been magnified in the present novel crisis. Thus, drawing from the lived experience of college students belonging to the marginalized group of indigenous peoples, this research described the essence of education in the context of the current COVID-19 crisis. Following the phenomenological approach based upon the hermeneutic rule of Dahlberg et al. (2008), the researcher interviewed 10 Filipino college students who identify themselves as indigenous peoples. Four themes emerged: 1.) It surprised me: Education has a changed ecology; 2.) It overwhelmed me: Education is fraught with divides; 3.) It motivated me: Education is a driver of aspiration beyond crisis; and 4.) It taught me: Education has unintended positive outcomes. These themes form the structure of the essence of education amid the COVID-19 crisis from the perspectives of college students belonging to the group of indigenous peoples. This research underlines the practical significance of analyzing the state of the students amid a virulent crisis. Given the extant inequality and considering the anticipated educational recovery phase, measures should be planned towards the attainment of responsive, appropriate, and relevant education.
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