Discrimination across new Europe

30th April 2004 at 01:00
With an estimated population of up to 12 million, Roma are the largest and most discriminated-against minority in Europe.

Czech Republic Two-thirds of Roma children attend special schools in what is effectively a sub-standard, segregated system. Roma make up only about 4 per cent of children, yet up to 60 per cent of those in institutions are Roma. Some 75 per cent of children in special schools are Roma.


Some 5 per cent of the population are Roma, but their numbers are increasing so rapidly that more resources are desperately needed. Less than 0.1 per cent of Roma go on to higher education. In some regions, up to 90 per cent of special school pupils are Roma.


One in five Roma children drops out of primary school, never returning to education. Others repeat classes - making no progress - until they have fulfiled the compulsory schooling requirements.


Despite government plans to giveRoma children special treatment - free meals andbooks for example - there is still segregation throughout the system. A number of schools are racially segregated and many Romachildren are placed in schools for the disabled.

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