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TOGETHER AT SCHOOL - ROMA CHILDREN INTEGRATION

Cultural Background

The social situation of Roma population is getting worse due to political and economical transition within the Romanian society. Within this subculture, the children are the first to suffer from poverty and lack of medical and social assistance. Further, these children receive little to no support with their education at home, as many have illiterate parents. Under these conditions, it is unlikely these children will do well or even attend school.

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What we offer

The Phillip House is actively working to integrate Roma children into the educational system and to prevent school drop-out. We have set up two Daycare Centers within the local schools attended by the children, where they can benefit from specialized educational support, social assistance, and multicultural education. The children also receive guidance with future educational and professional orientation.

The two schools provided two classrooms (one each), which were furnished with new desks, chairs, cabinets, computer, printer, TV, video-recorder, and a tape-recorder.

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Daily Activities

  • Assistance with homework provided by 4 teachers working in the Daycare Center from School no. 2 and 5 teachers working in the Daycare Center from School no. 148
  • Tutoring in the most difficult subjects: mathematics, physics, chemistry, Romanian language and literature.
  • Daily lunch of sandwiches, fruit, and sweets
  • School supplies and art supplies
  • Extracurricular activities: drawing, painting, singing and dancing, literary creations, foreign languages courses (English, French), Romany language courses, Roma culture and civilization, competitions

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Other Activities

Supervise meetings between parents and teachers; children and teachers; children, teachers and parents. Topics include: raising the parents' awareness about the importance of children's integration into the educational system; developing better parenting skills; elaboration of curriculums; training the teachers in order to be able to work with disadvantaged children; discussion of risks implied by the use of drugs, alcohol and also by prostitution.

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Social Services

  • Create and update personal records for each child, which include family background, school record, medical record, and a personal/social needs assessment
  • Implement an appropriate intervention strategy based on individual needs
  • Provide regular individual counseling to address children's emotional and behavioral needs

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Results

Since the beginning of this project, the children's grades have steadily improved and drop-out has been prevented, as all of the children within the program have remained in school. The response from the children and their parents as well as the educational community has been overwhelmingly positive. The excellent results of this program indicate that Roma integration within the educational system can be successfully achieved.

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(c) Phillip House Foundation, 06.2003
design by Andrei C. Ionescu