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Deputy PM Kosor says growing number of Roma children go to school

ZAGREB, July 29 (Hina) - A growing number of Roma children in Croatia go to school, 3,628 of them attend primary and secondary schools and ten are college students, Deputy Prime Minister Jadranka Kosor said at a session of the government commission in charge of monitoring the implementation of the national programme for Roma, the government's public relations office said in a statement.

Before the session, Kosor presented Roma primary and secondary school students with books, encyclopedias, school bags and equipment.

Kosor pointed to the importance of education, as well as the need to legalise Roma settlements and improve their health care.

Since 2005, the budget for the national programme for Roma and "The Decade of Roma Inclusion 2005-2015" action plan has increased by 630 percent, Kosor said.

The government commission discussed a report on a PHARE 2005 project of assistance to Roma, which is designed to include Roma assistants in the education system, improve cooperation between schools and parents, improve management and cooperation of all participants in the education process, and promote a positive image of the Roma minority.

The commission also accepted an initiative for Croatia to join the Council of Europe campaign "Dosta/Enough!", which is designed to promote Roma tradition and culture and eliminate prejudice.