Czech Republic under fire for still placing healthy Gypsy kids in special needs schools

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Human rights groups say the Czech Republic is still defying a European court ruling by continuing to place healthy Gypsy children in special needs schools.

The groups' statement comes Thursday on the seven-year anniversary of the Nov. 13, 2007, ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that the Czech Republic must stop placing Roma children into special schools.

Amnesty International, the Budapest-based Roma Rights Center and five other rights groups say Gypsies, or Roma, still make up at least one third of the students in schools for those with mild mental disabilities. They say "Roma pupils continue to experience segregated education."

The groups claim that Roma pupils are also separated from the majority students even in many mainstream schools in breach of the country's international obligations.