Promotion of inter-cultural education

•Title of the Project: Education of Roma Children
•Name of the Operational Program:
Education and Lifelong Learning 2007-2013
•Targeted at Roma (directly)
•Executed by: University of Athens /University of Thessaloniki
in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Lifelong Learning
and Religious Affairs
The Project promotes quality education and social inclusion with direct
actions towards ROMA Children by :
Enhancing accessibility and participation of Roma children in the
educational system
Continued support for actions enriching curricula, educational
material, teachers’ training, distance learning in order to support
more effective inclusion in the educational system and social life.
Combating early school-leaving by enhancing preschool and
primary education, all-day kindergarten and primary schools, as
well as language support classes at the level of primary and
secondary education (junior high school).
Promotion of intercultural education within the school and wider
school community.
Current situation with Roma in
• It is estimated that 350,000 Roma live in Greece in roughly 150 – 230
community towns ( Council of Europe)
• The Roma are not registered separately from other Greek citizens,
therefore making it difficult to have precise figures
• 50% of school aged children attend school. Of these
66% have normal attendance
14% have disrupted schooling
25% drop out
15% attend support classes
1,15% transfer to other schools (2004-2006)
Identifying key areas for
late school enrolment
inadequate school response to Roma children learning needs
low family incentive to continue children’s schooling
system inability to track school participation and educational
outcomes for travelling families.
Key intervention areas
• Early access to schooling: enrolment in preschool, early Primary
School, encourage further education to older students
• School Support Program for children who are struggling within the
school curriculum
• In-school professional training programs for teachers and community
members on intercultural education strategies and skills in effective
classroom teaching practices that promote meaningful and
successful learning.
Parent Support program so that they too acquire knowledge of the
value and outcomes of education
• Self supporting ROMA networks with specific reference to schooling
Methodology of Approach
Intercultural education is a highly specialised form of instruction designed to prepare persons to live
and work effectively in culturally diverse societies. The term ‘education’ includes all the components of
formal and non-formal teaching, of family or community education and of all the other processes of
organised social interaction aiming at the education of the individual
As a process, Intercultural Education involves three interrelated concepts:
– Intercultural Interaction
– Intercultural Communication
– Intercultural Understanding
As an approach, Intercultural Education promotes
– the appreciation of cultural diversity
– solidarity and tolerance
– the fostering of mutual respect
– enthnorelative thinking as a means of avoiding stereotyping and prejudice
As a strategy, the Intercultural Education approach focuses on:
– The identification of barriers which inhibits students from different cultural backgrounds reaching
their full learning potential with the aim of providing the framework in re examining these barriers in
the changing learning context and reducing the impact of the disablement by providing support
– The development of skills by the school learning community in understanding cultural diversity in
the process of dealing with difference in a diverse and changing society, and incorporating
difference and diversity in the knowledge base of the school.
Specific Intervention Actions
In order to achieve the set goals, it was deemed necessary to
• work closely with the Roma community and establish strong links between the school and
family through the use of Roma mediators
• support schools at the early school entry point of Roma children so as to limit the critical
transient period between school and home
• offer ongoing school support particularly regarding student progress within the curriculum by
facilitating the establishment of supplementary support classes, funding expert support
teaching staff , providing additional resources etc
• offer ongoing counselling and psychological support both to parents and school community
members in the attempt to tackle those interpersonal and personal parameters that infringe
of successful learning
• provide opportunities for teacher training and professional development in intercultural
• provide the opportunity for parents to attend adult learning classes in the attempt for the
whole family to participate in the learning process
• develop a school progress tracking system to monitor participation and success rates of
Roma children in the attempt to isolate those barriers that inhibit successful schooling and
locate those factors which promote school and community participation.
• establish lasting networks and links in support of ROMA issues in the fields of education,
health and welfare and housing
Measurable Outcomes
• Number of schools participating in the Project (50 Preschools, 110
Primary Schools, 5 Jnr Secondary Schools
• Number of School Mediators (32) employed in the project
• Number of teachers participating in the school based training (2,500)
• Number of supplementary support classes ( 55 + 20)
• Number of Roma students participating in the project (4,500)
Emerging Issues
How the support measures form part of the Intercultural Education
How the Roma Project is implemented in schools in conjunction
with other ESF projects
The issue of the roll over continuation periods of ESF OP projects
and the time gap between implementation periods
Tools developed during the Projects
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