AI calls on Czech Republic to halt segregation of Romani children
The human rights organization Amnesty International (AI) is criticizing the Czech Government for continuing to take a discriminatory approach toward the education of Romani children. Last week the Council of Europe also called on the Czech Republic to rapidly abolish the segregation of Romani children in education.
Five years after the European Court of Human Rights called the disproportionate enrollments of Romani children into the "special schools" unacceptable discrimination, AI says the situation in the Czech schools has barely changed. “The Czech authorities’ unwillingness to tackle segregation means poorer education for Romani children and a deeply unequal start in life”, said Nicolas Beger, Director of Amnesty International’s European Institutions Office.
According to AI, the Czech Government should adopt systematic reforms that will facilitate Romani children's equal access to education. Instead, the Government has adopted three different strategic plans in less than three years. AI believes the current plan does not explain how the Government intends to include Romani children in the schools where standard instruction is provided.
The Government's education policy was also criticized by Strasbourg. Last week the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe instructed the cabinet of Czech Prime Minister Nečas to submit information on the results it has achieved in the area of eliminating discrimination against Romani people in the schools as soon as possible. “The Committee of Ministers’ decision is an important reminder to the Czech Government to start prioritizing Roma children’s equal access to education,” said Beger.
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