A recent United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) study has revealed that only 1 out of 5 Roma (Gypsy) children has been allowed to be admitted in primary schools of Europe. Such study has brought Rajan Zed to say in his statement in Nevada, USA that Europe should bend its head in shame over this Roma maltreatment. Zed is the President of Universal Society of Hinduism. He added that Europe has been boasting on their human rights record and was an affluent continent but how come such maltreatment to Roma exists.
He has described the barriers of Roma educations as “appalling, poverty, persistent racism, discrimination and far?reaching social exclusion, stereotypes and prejudice dating back several centuries, disabilities, chronic ill-health, poor housing, life in marginalized settlements, homelessness, absence of funds to dress children appropriately for school, segregation, mainstream prejudice and xenophobia, being bullied and felt unwelcome at school abusive school?entry testing of Roma children (culturally biased tests looking for weaknesses and not strengths) etc.”
He has challenged the officials of World Bank, UNICEF, Council of Europe, Decade of Roma Inclusion, European Commission, UNESCO, European Parliament, Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, United Nations Development Programme, World Economic Forum, and among others who are staying in their cozy offices while these Roma children are suffering.
The recent study showed that in one of the European countries, rate of completion of secondary school for Roma children was 1.2 percent; while in another, Roma children’s attendance at preschool was 0.2 percent. Such low percentage could really deprive a Roma child from getting essential education to become better citizens in the future. Zed also made mention that instead of blaming Roma for high fertility rates, the gap of in educational outcomes of Roma and non-Roma should be closed.