Our education support project addresses the inequalities faced by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller families within the education system. GRT pupils are more likely to be excluded from and less likely to leave school with 5 GCSE’s or equivalent qualifications.
The project provides families with advice, support and advocacy, empowering parents to understand what goes on in schools and challenge discrimination. We provide support over the phone, write letters to schools and attend meetings to act as advocates for parents.
Alongside this frontline casework, we also feed into our organisation’s policy work and produce our own research. We also provide training packages for both community members and schools; it aims to promote greater awareness of GTR cultures within schools as well as better knowledge of school systems and processes for parents.
Our grant allows us to run the project for three years which is a great opportunity to work towards long-term change. We hope to see an increase in GTR parents feeling that they are able to effectively engage with their children’s schools, forming stronger relationships and challenging inequalities when necessary. We hope to see a rise in the number of families who are able to successfully appeal school exclusions, resulting in more GTR children who are able to remain in schools. We also hope to use this project to pull together research and resources to support schools in highlighting and learning from good inclusive practise when working with GTR families.