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22 February 2024 - News

Report "Out of School: Assessment on Barriers to School Enrollment for Ukrainian Refugee Youth in Poland” released

The report’s findings were published on 22nd of February 2024, on the eve of the 2-year mark of the full-scale war in Ukraine. As the crisis in Ukraine continues, hundreds of thousands of children and youth have found refuge in Poland, but estimated 115 thousand adolescents between 10-18 years old remain out of school resulting in their futures hanging in the balance. To shed light on this critical issue, CARE International in Poland, the International Rescue Committee (IRC) and Save the Children Poland have joined forces to publish a report: "Out of School: Assessment on Barriers to School Enrollment for Ukrainian Refugee Youth in Poland."

[READ the report or executive summary here]

“Key word here is inclusion, inclusion is absolutely critical.” – said Daniel Lawton, Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Warsaw, in the opening remarks of the report launch. And although Polish schools welcomed refugee children in March 2022, the education system was unprepared to accommodate the increased number of students and their specific needs. Today our research highlights that Ukrainian adolescent in Poland battle language barriers, social isolation, and obstacles to attending Polish schools two years into conflict. Report points out also logistic, cultural, and financial barriers as significant roadblocks to school enrollment. From overcrowded schools to hidden costs such as school supplies and clothing requirements, many Ukrainian families find themselves unable to navigate the complexities of the Polish education system. Nearly half of older youth reported difficulty accessing Polish education, and 53% of adult caregivers and 24% of older youth reported a lack of information about the Polish education system.

“It is deeply disturbing to see many Ukrainian children dropping out of the education system. Every child has the right to a quality education, regardless of their circumstances. Our latest report underscores the urgent need for concerted efforts to ensure that these children have access to education and the opportunity to build a better future.” - commented Bujar Hoxha, Save the Children Country Director.

Presentation of the report findings along with recommendations for both the Government of Poland as well as private and public actors was followed by a panel discussion on “How to effectively support the integration of Ukrainian youth in Poland” with participation of Jędrzej Witkowski, (Center for Citizenship Education), Anna Kovalchuk (Foundation Ukraine), Antonina Michałowska, (SzkoUA) and Joanna Gospodarczyk (City Hall of Warsaw).

“Publishing such reports is crucial, because the more we know the more we are prepared to react and to be proactive.” -  thanked Kateryna Baranetska, Ukrainian Embassy in Poland representative.

You can find the full report here.