It is not too late

Objectives

The exchange of experience conference – „It is not too late“ will be held from January 17th (Tuesday) to January 18th (Wednesday), 2017 at the Town-Counsil in Prague, Czech Republic. More than 100 participants from 9 countrie of EU (Czech Republic, Italy, Spain, Greece, France, Slovenia, Hungary, Romania and Belgium) will present good practices in Roma education and the second chance trainings for professional development.

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Mission

The main goal of „It is not too late“ conference is to provide an opportunity for the prevention of Roma children early school leaving, discrimination in schools and information about the education benefits and late-school options.

We believe that the conference will be the best opportunity to create a common space where professionals and experts can work and develop collaborations and share experiences in Roma education.

Some of the topics which will be discussed are:

  1. The importance of official recognition of anti-Gypsyism
  2. Root cause of Roma marginalization
  3. Promoting the human rights perspective and equal citizenship for Roma
  4. Various forms of discrimination and anti-Gypsyism
  5. Importance of sensitising the mainstream population
  6. The need for Roma-integration in education and challenge segregation
  7. The role of the media in fighting the stereotypes and prejudies about Roma
  8. Roma Youth
  9. Enforcement and antidiscrimination legislation, independence of equality bodies from political parties and access to justice

Conference

In the framework of the PAL European project (cofounded by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme of the European Union), on 17 and 18 January 2017 the Conference of Awareness Raising Campaign It is not too late will be held in Prague (Czech Republic). The Conference will be an opportunity for exchanging experiences and best practices among project partners and professionals who are active in the field of education and school inclusion of Roma people.

More than 100 participants coming from 9 different European countries will participate (Czech Republic, Belgium, Italy, Spain, Greece, France, Slovenia, Hungary and Romania).

The Conference, main event of the Campaign, will be a common space, at European level, where to share the most important experiences in the field of preventing Roma children early school leaving, discrimination in schools and to exchange information about the benefits of education and late-school options.

Indeed, despite differing situations and contexts across Europe, nowadays the non-inclusion of Roma children in the educational system and the lack of involvement of their families in the educational system are one of the main root causes of social exclusion, stigma and discrimination.

During the Conference the following topics will be discussed during workshops, short meetings involving external experts and the target group, operators in the sector. In detail: the need for Roma-integration in education, best practices, methodologies and possible solutions; the importance of official recognition of anti-Gypsyism; Root causes of Roma marginalization; promoting the human rights perspective and equal citizenship for Roma; various forms of discrimination and anti-Gypsyism; importance of sensitising the mainstream population; the role of the media in fighting the stereotypes and prejudices about Roma; Roma Youth; enforcement and antidiscrimination legislation, independence of equality bodies from political parties and access to justice.

Best practices recognized by project partners will be presented and discussed.

What is “It is not too late”?

The values of equality, tolerance, and non-discrimination are cornerstones of European societies that should be promoted through education; however, in reality, access to learning opportunities, the effects of socioeconomic disadvantage and social exclusion directly impact learners’ success at school, their chances of a higher education and, as such, their future as informed and actively engaged members of society. Educational disadvantage is both a consequence and a cause of poverty and social exclusion.

On 7 December 2016, the European Commission adopted a Communication setting out its vision for ensuring a high quality education for all. The Communication on improving and modernising education outside the EC emphasizes the strategic of importance of education in the EU. Investing in education represents society investing in its people and its future. The Commission recognizes the achievements and progress of education and training systems across the EU in recent years. Key Europe 2020 targets are being met, including:

  • the share of early-school leaving has been brought down from 15.7% in 2005 to 11.0% in 2015
  • the 40% target for the share of young people graduating from higher education is in reach

At the same time, the latest results of the OECD PISA survey, released on 6 December, and the EU’s own Skills Agenda adopted in June show there are still areas where education needs to perform better, including:

  • the high proportion of pupils with low basics skills in reading, maths and science
  • mixed results in terms of the employability of graduates
  • inequality in access to good education for all students, including those living in remote areas

Our Campaign

The campaign “It is not too late” aims at raising awareness among relevant stakeholders and Roma youth concerning the benefits and popularization of education and the need to assure access to education and to fight discrimination and anti-Gypsysm; a better understanding and improved awareness will help to advocate for the rights of Roma youth and will help professionals, stakeholders and Roma to reduce vulnerability, speed up Roma integration in the educational system and support the implementation of inclusion strategies at different levels.

The Campaign is designed developing a combined-integrated approach to ensure consistency in delivering messages to meeting objectives and reaching target groups adequately. All the partners (20 in 9 countries) will be actively involved and share responsibility of delivering successfully the plan; among them, “Fondazione Leone Moressa” will play a key role, as partner responsible for the WS4 – Dissemination; “RomPraha” will play also a key role, since it will host the core event of the Campaign (“The Conference”); of course, the Lead Applicant, UC Limburg, will coordinate the process. The most urgent problems in the area of educational inclusion of Roma people and communities along with the best practices will be addressed in accordance with the differences of each local context.

In details, the Campaign is covering the following specific topics (selected or emphasized depending on the country context) about:

 

(i)         Roma who never enrolled in the educational system: report prepared from Reggio Emilia (Italy)

(ii)        Roma youth included in the educational system and second chance– report prepared by ENLACE (Spain)

(iii)       Issues of segregation: report prepared by RomPraha (Czech Republic)

(iv)       Best practices in the educational system at policy level: report prepared by ALDA (France)

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  • Follow @palproject2016 on Twitter using the hashtags #itisnottoolate #projectpal2016

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