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Inclusive education of Roma students is a priority goal of the European Union. However, synthesising analyses reveal precious little progress scored in this area. This…
Inclusive education of Roma students is a priority goal of the European Union. However, synthesising analyses reveal precious little progress scored in this area. This study aims to explore the factors that have affect Roma students’ academic achievement, specifically, whether the views of their teachers have an impact on the performance besides individual and family background factors.
A large-sample questionnaire-based research study was conducted in the 2019/2020 academic year involving 4,674 seventh-grade students and 2,656 teachers from 194 Hungarian schools. On a self-admission basis, 374 of the students were Roma.
In the schools examined, the performance of Roma students is poorer, their commitment to learning is weaker, yet they have a higher opinion of their school and their teachers than their non-Roma peers. The involvement of majority students in extracurricular private tutoring, particularly foreign language learning, is greater. Roma students’ academic achievement is mainly affected by individual background factors, in particular by their school history.
The findings suggest that although the role of the school and pedagogical views is important, they are not predominant factors determining Roma students’ performance. The explanatory power of individual characteristics is stronger than that of school factors. The comparison between Roma and non-Roma students also shows that cooperation between different sectors (education, social and health) would be essential within and outside school in terms of home learning conditions, digital access and student well-being.