Better support call for Traveller community

Wales’ chief inspector of schools has called for more support for some of the most vulnerable learners – children from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities.

Since 2011, more children from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities have been attending school, but the education experience for these pupils and their families needs to improve, according to Estyn.

Its new research found that over the last eight years the numbers of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils in Wales have increased by almost 35 per cent in secondary schools and by 41 per cent in primary schools.

Many schools have raised awareness of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller culture and lifestyle in assemblies and celebratory days, but the inspectorate says schools need to promote it more throughout the curriculum.

Chief inspector Mr Rowlands said: “Only half of pupils from these communities continue into secondary education. Even though GCSE results have improved, Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils are still the lowest achievers of all ethnic groups. Schools need to ensure their anti-bullying policies take account of the specific needs of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils, and evaluate their strategies for achievement, attendance and transition to help generate improvement.”

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