From Segregation to Inclusion

Is Education of Roma Children in Central Europe on the Right Track?

The speakers advanced several points on the topic. Education of Roma children in Slovakia cannot be treated separately from other aspects of their lives. For example, how can children perform well at school if they do not even have a table at home at which they could do their homework? Roma children, despite being a relatively small fraction of all children, account for a majority of those placed in so-called “special schools”, originally designed for children with disabilities. As it is extremely rare that a pupil graduating from a “special school” would join further education other than apprenticeship, the disproportional placement of Roma children in the “special schools” undermines their educational and career prospects and leads to a vicious circle of social exclusion. Additionally, segregation increases the social gap and the likelihood of misunderstandings between the Roma and non-Roma population. The decisions by international and national courts against the segregation in Roma education in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary were also discussed.

 The debate was moderated by MARKÉTA SETINOVA, MSc in Sociology Student, University of Oxford

Speakers

 LAURA LAUBEOVÁ, Educational Psychologist and Sociologist, Charles University and University of Oxford

 SLÁVKA MACÁKOVÁ, Executive Director, ETP Slovakia

 JUDITH OKELY, Emeritus Professor of Anthropology, University of Hull and Research Associate, School of Anthropology, University of Oxford

 TAMÁS SZIGETI, Human Rights Lawyer, Hungarian Civil Liberties Union

The deabte was organised by Kubo Macak & Matej Bajgar