In Cluj-Napoca, Romania, the Gheorhge Sincai high school participated in the project “Services for Socio-Educational Integration of Roma”, coordinated by the Foundation Desire for Social reflection and openness, founded by SEE. In the frame of this project, the high school participated in the activity “Index for Inclusion” developed by Tony Booth and Mel Ainscow, and published in Romanian in 2002. During this activity, the school personnel, students and parents evaluated the inclusive cultures, policies and practices in the school. All the participants were sensitized on the issue of inclusion. During Inclusive Schools Week, a group of 5th and 9th students, under the guidance of their social sciences teacher, Ms. Ioana Mihacea, invited a successful Roma person to speak about her experiences and road to self-realization. After the discussion, the students created drawings to illustrate their understanding of inclusion.
The overall atmosphere was friendly, in the spirit of an inclusive school. The students were delighted to take part in the activity, all of them giving great feedback. Once the activity was over, the kids kept talking about it. They were pleased to be involved and they wanted to share their experience with their friends, family, and other people, in general. This activity was considered entertaining and interesting by the students, and they learned a lot about inclusive schools. This type of education strengthens the friendships between students, making activities much more fun.
Finally, they understood that inclusion means equality, family, respect and unity. All things they discussed can be observed through their drawings.
Submitted by Ioana Mihacea and the Participants