ROMANY CHILDREN IN POLISH SCHOOLING SYSTEM – HOW TO EDUCATE THEM?

J. Prokop1, E. Mach2

1Pedagogical Faculty, Charles University in Prague (CZECH REPUBLIC)
2Pedagogical University in Cracow (POLAND)
The Romany people in Poland are an ethnic minority that has been gaining more and more attention in the almost completely ethnically homogenous Polish society. Most of the Romany people are facing social and economic problems today. Low living standards of those people together with tense relations with the majority community verge on social exclusion. The solution, or the key to those problems can lie in education of Romany children that will increase the level of education of the Romany society in the future, improving their social and financial situation.

This article presents basic information on the Romany society in Poland, as well as actions undertaken to create effective organization of education for the Romany students together with initiatives aimed at this ethnic group.

The authors also present some problems that occur in the process of educating students from different cultures. They outline challenges to be faced by teachers, Romany assistants, educators or governmental authorities on various levels, as well as local communities attempting organization of education for Romany children.

The information and proposals gathered and presented in this article can be useful in seeking further, more effective solutions aimed at educating Romany children and facilitating communication between the discussed ethnic group and the majority community.