Promoting inclusive education in multi-ethnic societies encourages students, regardless of their ethnic background, to be able to fulfil their educational goals, while being actively engaged in and and equal parts of the shared learning environment. Scholars reflecting on this subject have emphasised that ethnic, racial and cultural diversity need to be reflected in all structures of educational institutions, including the staff, rules and values, curriculum and students. Ultimately, inclusive education is a means towards eliminating segregated education, removing the barriers that cause certain ethnic groups to have lower educational outcomes and leave schooling early,  or attend schools that preclude their access to specialist training or higher education.


  • Interethnic bullying and microaggressions as factors affecting the academic performance and educational outcomes of minority children (2022-2023)

Research on bullying and microaggressions on ethnic grounds as factors shaping minority children’s experience at school is sparse. There is however evidence that prejudiced, hostile, and discriminatory attitudes and actions of classmates and teachers towards pupils belonging to minority groups are indeed present in many schools and affect the overall academic performance and educational outcomes of these children. This project seeks to shed light on the specificities of interethnic bullying, as well as its impact on the academic performance and educational outcome of minority children, with a focus on Roma children’s experience. The project is developed by Andreea Cârstocea and Polina Sulima.

  • Career guidance and counselling for vulnerable groups in Serbia (2019)

This project was designed and implemented as a means to support the educational reform in Serbia in 2019, by inspiring the stakeholders in the Serbian educational sector with some of the best practices from Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. In particular, the project sought to identify and propose solutions for the main challenges faced by pupils of Roma background in accessing and participating in dual vocational education, a type of education which was novel in the context of Serbian schools.  A further question related to the ways in which their transitioning to employment after graduation could be supported.

The project included a set of consultations and interviews conducted by ECMI researchers with relevant stakeholders in Serbia, followed by a visit by these stakeholders to Schleswig-Holstein, in the course of which they were introduced to a range of measures to support job orientation and counselling of young people, especially of disadvantaged groups. Following the consultations and exchanges of experience, the project partners produced the brochure ‘Talente Entdecken & Fördern’ (“Discovering and Supporting Talents”), which offers background information concerning the counselling methods used in the Schleswig-Holstein context and outlines the modes of cooperation of the relevant institutional actors here.  The brochure outlines the main challenges faced by disadvantaged groups in education, with a particular emphasis on the experience of Roma pupils; and reflects on how vulnerable groups can be better supported in the educational process.

The project was the result of a collaboration among the European Centre for Minority Issues, the German Corporation for International Cooperation GmbH (GIZ), the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the Land Schleswig-Holstein.

The project was developed by Andreea CârstoceaLjubica Dorđević-Vidojković, and Polina Sulima.


Relevant ECMI publications

Andreea Cârstocea (2018) (Un)friendly school environments? Bullying and microaggressions as a cause for Roma children’s academic underachievement, ECMI Working Paper #107 

Andreea Cârstocea, Ljubica Djordjevic, Polina Sulima, Talente Entdecken & Fördern. Über die Unterstützung von benachteiligten Jugendlichen im Übergang von Schule in Ausbildung und Beruf (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit, 2019)


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