Teachers’ needs assessment for the (re)integration of Roma children in the educational system in Romania, Tdh RO, February 2020 (EN/RO)

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Terre des hommes Foundation

Terre des hommes Foundation Romania, February, 2020 (EN/RO)

The study report in Romania presents the teachers’ needs for professional training in order to deliver high quality, non-disruptive and non-discriminatory education to Roma children in international migration.

The present report is produced within an intervention project, as support for the organisation of a Capacity building programme addressed to teachers in order to succeed in school integration of Roma pupils and, more specifically, to Roma pupils that migrate in various countries with their families. The report develops mostly a practical approach and less an academical one. It synthetises information collected based on interviews and focus-groups with 35 teachers, school principals and other education specialists, as well as through an online survey filled by 116 teachers from schools with at least 50 Roma pupils, at national level. The report provides a synthesis and a profound analysis of testimonials collected from experienced specialists.

The main difficulties indicated by the teachers involved in the study and for which they ask for external support are related to the teachers-parents, school-Roma community relationship. Other problems indicated by teachers are the methodological ones. Even if they are often involved in educating disadvantaged groups (Roma children in this case), the teachers do not have access to specific methods (complementary or supplementary methods) and they develop in time personal and local methods, unverified and unvalidated, in order to solve ad-hoc certain problematic situations. These personal and local methods represent a rich practical experience but, in the same time, a risk for the unintended perpetuation of prejudices and stereotypes that can harm on medium or long term. The teachers are often constrained to develop, beside the basic education function, a supplementary function of social worker also. Assuming this role rises question marks and risks regarding the legitimacy of their actions within the community.

Concluding, even if very experienced in the education of Roma pupils, the participants to the study feel the need to discuss and validate their practical methods developed in time, as well as the need of transfer and good practices exchange between specialists for mutual validation of personal experiences. The teachers are aware of their limited competencies in areas like the culture and the social organisation of Roma communities, special methods for the education of Roma pupils, as disadvantaged persons, methods of communication and cooperation with their parents, national and European anti-discrimination legislation, but they also manifest their will to learn and validate their own practical experiences in formal contexts of debate and professional training. In this sense, the present study introduces a collection of conclusions and recommendations useful for a Capacity building program for teachers within the project MIȘTO AVILEAN!, and also for any other programmes of training organised at institutional level for schools with a large participation of Roma pupils, as disadvantaged persons.

(The report is based on a field research carried out in Romania, during the summer of 2019. Focus groups and interviews were realized with 35 education specialists and 10 members of Roma families. An online survey was organized with 115 teachers form in 16 counties of Romania.)

The report was produced by

Terre des hommes Foundation Romania

Bogdan Romanică           - Project Manager (research coordinator, PhD Sociologist)

Oana Ghiocea                  - Education Expert (research assistant)

Marius Cernușcă             - Field Education Expert (research assistant)

The report is available in two languages: EN / RO.