Best grades – the only way to escape poverty

Five years ago we only hoped that so many Roma children would be sitting in integrated classrooms, winning many competitions. Today it is now reality.

The Provincial Department of Education in Serbia is implementing a unique offering scholarship for Roma secondary school students with the support of the Government of Vojvodina, the Roma Education Fund and the Open Society Foundations. The five years long project reached more than 800 students.
Last year more than 300 Roma enrolled in higher education institutions and universities, and since this year the enrollment period is not yet  completed , this number is expected to exceed .

Scholarship includes 4.800 RSD per months and 6.000 RSD in September for school supplies as well as mentor support.
 Students have to have a minimum of 3.00 GPA (GPAs is Serbia goes from 1 to 5; 5 is the best) and those who finished with 5.00, there were 11 of them, received laptops as reword for their excellent success in learning. Additionally, with the beginning of the new school year, 80 Roma secondary school students throughout Vojvodina will be awarded with the free English language courses.
The director of the program, Dragana Dimitrov explained how the program helped young Roma with their education. She said that in most of the cases, poverty was actually a great motivation for the success in education. In students' transcripts, usually very poor living conditions, these are not visible, only the great grades.