This is only a preview of unpublished case!
Equal access to education for all!
Czech Republic, action created 20.4.2015, petition is active
Roma children in the Czech Republic often do not get the same education as other children. Because of their differences, Roma children often experience bullying and are separated from other students, and even placed in schools for children with mild mental disabilities. Does this mean that they can not fulfill their potential and build a better future for themselves?
Sign to challenge Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka, as follows:
Dear Prime Minister,
Every child should have the opportunity to go to school without having experienced discrimination, including harassment, just because of who he is. Thousands of Roma children in Czech schools are experiencing prejudice every day. The European Commission criticized the Czech government, but that does not solve the urgent problem. I urge you, therefore, to:
1. First publicly acknowledge that Roma children in Czech schools have experienced ethnic discrimination.
2. Take strong and unequivocal political commitment to the elimination of discrimination of Roma children in education and consider this a priority that must be urgently addressed.
3. Devise a plan with comprehensive measures to end ethnic discrimination and segregation of Roma children in Czech schools.
At present, Roma children lack educational resources and opportunities to which they are entitled. The correct answer is integration, not segregation. Act Now.
Andrei Rom is 15 years old and lives with his grandmother and sister near Cesky Krumlov, where he attends elementary school. He moved to Southern Bohemia when he was in the 4th grade. Before that he lived in the Slovak Republic, where he attended a mainstream elementary school. His living room is full of his trophies from the football tournaments. He dreams of studying at a secondary school with a focus on physical education.
As a native speaker of Slovak Andrej, Andrei had problems at school with the Czech language, but nobody did anything to help. In 5th grade, he failed the Czech lauguage test and was sent for an examination of pedagogical and psychological counseling.
"In school, they showed me where the images were. It seemed as if he thought I was an idiot. It was very simple. "A week later he received a letter of recommendation that he shifted to practical elementary school. "I wanted to go there, because I wanted to make friends there." he recalls. He did not know, however, that this school is for pupils with mental disabilities. His grandmother, who is his legal guardian, was against it, but felt pressure to comply. "They told me that the transfer is necessary because [at the regular school] he would continue to fail."
Andrei describes the practical elementary school as a "special place". "They make us idiots. The school is really easy ... They teach us slowly, because it's a special school. A friend of mine and I are best [students]. "
His grandmother complains about access to schools. "They treat us [parents or grandparents] as if we were small children. When my grandchild leaves something at home, the school will call social workers and come here ... and sometimes threaten me that my children will never marry and be given to them at the orphanage. "The school has confirmed that it regularly collaborates with social workers, and they are very strict when it comes on school attendance."
The headmistress insists that there is no difference between the prospects of children who went to practical elementary schools and those from mainstream schools. But she also says that the aim of the primary school is to prepare students for further education at secondary vocational schools and to ensure that they "have a healthy self-esteem."
"If I were at an ordinary school, I would go on to high school and then to college. But [here] they told me that it is impossible to get the school diploma. " Roma children often attend classes or schools which are known as "Roma" to their neighbors and are also significantly more likely to be for pupils with mild mental disability (primary school). In those schools, pupils are not required to learn a lot and will receive a small amount of knowledge. They will thus be able to do only unskilled, poorly paid jobs or not find a job at all. For many of them, at a very early age, the doors to quality education and success in life have closed. Like other children, Andrei and other Roma children's dreams deserve an equal chance.