Challenging deep-rooted school discrimination of Romani children in special education in Slovakia

Project closed.

Thousands of Romani children throughout Slovakia continue to face discrimination in access to education. The Project challenges discrimination of Romani children in a local primary school in one of the villages in eastern Slovakia through strategic litigation, local empowerment and advocacy. Almost 90 % of all Romani children attending the selected local school are currently educated in special classes of mainstream school according to curriculum for children with mental disability placed even in separate building near Roma settlement. The project aims to connect pending litigation with activities on increasing awareness of Romani parents about discriminatory nature of education of their children and supporting their engagement in local advocacy initiatives in order to reverse existing discriminatory status quo. The given locality has been strategically selected with an aim to further encourage public discussion about necessity to address discrimination of Romani children in Slovak special education. Apart from local impacts, the expected project results have potential to lay the valuable groundwork for advocacy efforts towards the Government authorities so that they take effective measures to prevent discrimination in education and provide every child with equal educational chances.

The project is implemented with a financial support of the US embassy in Slovakia in a period of  1 October 2016 - 31 August 2017.