Pride and Prejudice

Can awareness of traveller culture improve school experiences? Gypsy, Roma and traveller children are the lowest achieving group of pupils in our schools and many drop out by Year 9. This programme looks at ways of encouraging this group to be proud of their culture and heritage so they are less vulnerable to the bullying and prejudice that often leads to their poor attendance, and resultant low attainment. As part of raising awareness of the Gypsy lifestyle, pupils from Cranbrook C of E Primary School in Kent visit a local Romany heritage centre where they can peep into traditional trailers and talk to a traveller family. A local secondary school has used the site as a location for a DVD resource which details the history of Kent-based travellers. We also find out how schools in Brent and Hertfordshire help children from a traveller background celebrate their heritage and make the transition into school and from primary to secondary school less traumatic. Older travellers recall the racism and prejudice they faced when they were at school.

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