Czech Republic: Concern over Roma school separation

New research has revealed an increase in the proportion of Roma pupils attending special schools or classes in the Czech Republic.

That’s despite a European Court of Human Rights judgement calling on the country’s authorities to end the “unjustified enrolment of Roma children in “special’ or so-called ‘practical’ schools.

Ulrich Bunjes, the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe has given his backing to a Committee of Ministers plea to the government of the Czech Republic to fully execute the final judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in D.H. and Others vs The Czech Republic.

When this case was brought before the court, Roma children in the Czech Republic were 27 times more likely than non-Roma children to be placed in ‘special schools’ for the mentally disabled.

Although the total number of pupils (Roma and non-Roma) in special schools or classes has dropped, year-on-year, from 17,755 in 2008 to 10,695 in 2014, the proportion of Roma pupils in such institutions increased from 28.2% (previous year) to 32.4% (school year 2014/2015).

The percentage of Roma children in mainstream classes decreased from 10.3% (previous year) to 9.5% (school year 2014/2015) also.

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