Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

You are currently in: Gypsies and Travellers


Gypsy and Traveller Education

9 January 2019

On this page we provide information for Traveller children and information for parents of Traveller children. Other sources of information include:

  • mobile libraries, which have books, magazines and DVDs to help with school work or just have fun
  • computers in your local library, which you can book online
  • The Answers People, which can provide answers to all your questions

Information for children

Going to school can be a worrying and scary time. However, we can help you with things such as:

  • arranging a visit for you and your parents to the school(s) you would like to go to
  • arranging for one of our team to go with you on your visit
  • settling into your new school
  • if you are bullied
  • talking with you about any worries you may have

You may be in different classes to your brothers, sisters or cousins because of your different ages but you may see each other at break and lunchtimes. You won’t be alone though, lots of schools have buddy systems to welcome new children and show them what to do.

Information for parents

The Essex Countywide Traveller Unit (ECTU) has a team of people who will help to make sure your child can access education and has the best possible experience at school. We support Traveller children and young people who:

  • arrive from other areas
  • need help with school transfers or transition
  • are new to schooling
  • travel seasonally for work

We can help you:

  • arrange a school visit for you and your child to the school(s) you would like them to go to
  • apply for a school place and admission to local schools for a short period of time if your family travels for work
  • apply for school transport and free school meals
  • if your child is bullied, giving support to you and your child if you need it
  • school-based distance learning, enabling your child to continue education through the travelling season and keep in contact with the base school
  • visits to you on sites within Essex to monitor distance learning packs and provide advice

Informing the school

When your child starts school you will be asked to complete a form about their ethnic background. It is important to choose the category that best describes your culture and values so that: 

  • teachers can link your child’s home experience to their work in school
  • all staff in your child’s school can learn about your culture
  • schools, the Department for Education and the local authority (LA) can check that every child is being treated fairly
  • the school can take extra care if they know your child may be at a higher risk of being bullied.

Contact us

If you would like to speak to us about any of this information please contact:

Essex Countywide Traveller Unit (ECTU)

Tel: 0345 6037624