Important Announcement

We've moved!

The Gypsy Roma Traveller Achievement Service has moved more permanently to:

Closing the Gap, Learning Improvement,
PO box 837, Leeds City Council, LS1 9PZ.

Our telephone number 0113 395 2927 and email addresses are unaffected. Otherwise it's business as usual!

GRTHM 2013 logo

Award Ceremony

Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children awarded for their achievements

Children from the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities were awarded at a special ceremony for their achievements.

Award Ceremony 2013

The awards ceremony, organised by Leeds City Council’s Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Achievement Service celebrated the children from these communities in Leeds who have achieved a variety of educational and personal success. There was also a celebration of adult winners who had been outstanding in their support to the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities.

Read more and view a photo gallery of the event

GRTHM 2013 logo

Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month 2013

The 6th National Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month held every year in June is now here.

Roots and Routes competition. GRTHM 2013. NATT+

Visit the NATT+ website

Resources Sale

GRTHM posters, postcards, learning packs and DVDs at reduced prices...

Find out more here

Library and Resources Centre

The new GRTAS Library is now opened in partnership with Leeds Gypsy And Traveller Exchange – Leeds GATE.

GRT Library and Resources Centre LeedsThis library is FREE and offers fiction and non-fiction books, teacher’s packs, artefacts, DVDs and CDs all with a Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Focus for schools.

It is open every Thursday term time from 12.00 to 4.30pm.
It's location is at the Leeds GATE offices at Crown Point House, 167-169 cross Green Lane, LS9 0BD.

For more details contact:

  • Claire 07891 270437
  • Sue 07891 270433
  • Sally 07891 270431

"Where the presence of GRT pupils is openly acknowledged and where positive and accurate images of different communities are featured within both the resources of the school and the curriculum, then the pupil response is lively and there is a genuine openness to learning."

DCSF, Moving forward together: Raising Gypsy Roma and Traveller achievement

Achievements awards 2013

Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Achievers Award Ceremony 2013

This years annual prize-giving ceremony will take place in Leeds Civic Hall on Wednesday 26th. June 2013, 1.00 – 3.00pm

Leeds Children’s Services and the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Achievement Service would be delighted if you would join us in celebrating the achievement of the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children and young people of Leeds as part of the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month in June.

Prizes will also be awarded to the Leeds winners and runners of the National Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month Competition organised and run by NATT+ (National Association of Teachers of Travellers and other professionals). This year’s theme is Roots and Routes. The winners and runners up will go forward to the national judging and if successful will go to the Department for Education for the national prize giving.

Prizes will also be awarded to the winners of the “Community Art” competition. This competition was funded by the British Council as part of the RICE (Roma Inclusion through Culture and Education project). The RICE project will also be launching the book, “Who do we think we are?”  This is a collection of pupil’s stories, poems and pictures about themselves.

For further details please contact Sue Itzinger.

Summer Festival

Roma Festival

An event to showcase young Roma talent

Roma Festival 2013 LogoThe Gypsy Roma Traveller Achievement Service are holding a Roma festival on 24th June 2013. It will take place at the Co-operative Academy of Leeds.

The aim of the festival is for the Roma community in Leeds to be proud of themselves and showcase their talents. We would like schools to get involved in this exciting and unique event by bringing their Roma pupils to share their talents. The pupils could sing, dance, play music, perform a drama sketch, recite a poem or a story they have written or like. Families and community members can also be invited to attend this celebration.

For further details download the festival flyer or contact Sally Hall.

Film about Roma Children at Harehills Primary School

Our lives - short films that show lives of Leeds' Roma childrenYorkshire Roma SOURCE have just released 2 new short films about the lives of Roma children in Leeds.

The film 'Our lives' uses still photographs taken by Roma children at Harehills Primary School in Leeds, together with audio interviews with two of the children – Sebastian and Marketa, who talk about their lives in Leeds since leaving the Czech Republic.

Find out more and links to the film


Press Release

The Romedia Foundation released its advocacy spot for the series of cultural events Requiem for Auschwitz. The Requiem for Auschwitz is part of a pan-European project and brings to Budapest, Hungary, a spectacular concert, a documentary film festival and an exhibition.

The video spot, shot in the prestigious Raleigh Studios outside Budapest, is a call for the remembrance of all victims of the Nazi regime to be a part of building our future in Hungary, in Europe, and across the world.

Click here to view the video

Click here for more on the Requiem for Auschwitz events

Click here for more on the Romedia Foundation


Downloadable publication

Good Practice Guide

Good Practice GuideThe Gypsy Roma Traveller Achievement Service (GRTAS) are very proud to present to you their good practice guide for improving outcomes for Gypsy Roma Traveller (GRT) pupils. The good practice guide includes many case studies taken from schools and educational settings in Leeds. The case studies show some of the approaches and strategies used to support the GRT pupils and their families.

All schools and educational settings should be aware of the needs of this marginalised community. The GRT pupils are one of the lowest achieving groups of children in our schools, both in Leeds and Nationally. It is therefore important that every-one involved in the education of these children and young people are both aware of their history, culture and traditions and have strategies and teaching approaches in place to overcome barriers faced.

The aim for all schools is to raise the attainment of all their pupils including their GRT pupils whether they are ascribed or not and to promote their cultural identity throughout school.

Building good, effective relationships with the children, parents, carers, families and communities is paramount for schools to succeed in their aims of integrating GRT children into their schools and the education system. GRT pupils can be as successful as any other pupils and have the right to do so.

We hope that you enjoy reading our guide and find it a useful, valuable resource.

Download the Good Practice Guide Document

For further information contact Sally Hall

Mrs Maureen Baker MBE

We are sad to announce the passing of Maureen Baker, who was well known to us at GRTAS in Leeds. Maureen worked closely with Leeds GATE. They have a tribute page on their website to which you are welcome to and comments and your memories.

A national plan for music education

The Importance of Music

Gypsy, Roma and Traveller opportunities to take part.

Michael Gove shares his vision:

"This is the first time that a National Plan for Music Education has set out a central vision for schools, arts and education organisations to drive excellence in music education. This National Plan is clear about the importance of music: it will ensure not just that more children have access to the greatest of art forms, but that they do better as a result in every other subject."

Download a document from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to find out more.

From Segregation to Inclusion

Roma Pupils in the United Kingdom A Pilot Research Project

A new report by Equality and the Roma Education Fund

From the Executive Summary

Segregation to Inclusion coverTo our knowledge, no research has been conducted which looked at the educational attainment of Roma pupils who migrated with their parents from the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the United Kingdom or another Western European country. This pilot research study is the first of its kind to explore the experience of Czech and Slovak Roma pupils of attending special or de facto segregated (Roma-only) schools in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, while comparing that to their experience of attending primary or secondary mainstream education in the UK.

Literature and research reports on the situation of Roma in the education systems in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, which have been conducted and published by various organisations including the Roma Education Fund, were reviewed. This desk research was combined with field research undertaken by Equality between June and August 2011 at eight locations in England: Leicester, Chatham, Rotherham, Wolverhampton, Southend-on-Sea, Peterborough, London, and Derby. During the pilot research, 61 Czech or Slovak Roma students, 28 Roma parents, and 25 school or other education staff were interviewed.

Download the UK report


First in a series of interviews with prominent Roma

Interviews by Livia Dragomir

In the first of a series Livia Dragomir talks to Ian Hancock.

Ian became the first Romani to receive a PhD from University of London. A reputed linguist, he is one of the most important Romani activists in the world at the moment. An inspiring figure for Roma everywhere he talks to Livia about education, Roma language and the situation in Dale Farm, Essex.

Read the interview with Ian Hancock here.

Achievements Awards ceremony 2011

Awards and Prize Giving

This year's annual achievements awards ceremony took place on 29th July and was held once again in the Banqueting Suite in Leeds Civic Hall.

Holy Family Catholic School Choir

A few hundred people witnessed the giving of prizes and certificates to achievers from the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities in recognition of their progress, contributions and success in schools in Leeds. Prizes and certificates were also presented to the winners, runner-up and highly commended entries to our calendar competition that we ran as part of 2011's Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month celebrations.

A large audience were treated to performances by the Holy Family Catholic School Choir (above) and the South Leeds Academy Musicians. Two members of Leeds Rhinos Rugby League team, Brett Delaney and Jamie Peacock were also in attendance giving support to the achievers and competition winners which was an exciting experience for many.

Nigel Richardson, director of Children's Services in Leeds, councillor Jane Dowson and Sameena Choudrey the head of Equalities and Entitlement were also present demonstrating their support for the work of the Gypsy Roma Traveller Achievement Service and to the Gypsy Roma and Traveller communities that live in the Leeds area.

View a gallery of photographs of the awards ceremony

Strengthening Children's Early Language Development

Every Child a Talker imageIdeas and fantastic resources to enhance Early Years work with children and families from the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, focusing on Communication Language and Literacy (CLL) and developing home/school links.

This project has been developed in partnership with Leeds Speech and Language Therapy Service and Leeds City Council Early Years Service and ourselves.

The project is based on the National Strategies Every Child a Talker (ECAT) programme. See examples of activities that have taken place in Leeds which typically occur every day in Early Years settings and describe ways in which they can be used to promote children's language development. They describe planning an activity and then evaluate the outcome.

Read more about ECAT


Portrait Competition winners

International Competition imageSee the images created by the winners and runners-up in the recent Portrait competition we ran as part of Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month 2010.

Competition portraits

Images of the award ceremony for this competition and also the national poetry competition for Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month 2010 can be seen on the GRTHM website.

Award Ceremony pictures

Images of the 2009 awards - GRTAS organised and held in Leeds

Resources for classrooms

Catalogue coverThe Education Leeds Early Years’ Lending Service, is an initiative from the Gypsy Roma Traveller Achievement Service (GRTAS) funded by Leeds City Council Early Years’ Department and Education Leeds. The aim of the service is to provide items for loan that are culturally relevant to Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GRT) children to help promote a sense of belonging.

Find out more

Listen to Romipen live in Leeds

RomipenIn 2008 The Gypsy Ensemble Romipen formed specially for GRTHM in Leeds. You can enjoy one of their performances during their stay in Leeds online now.

Find out more and listen to Romipen


Achievement Awards Ceremony 2010

Our annual ceremony this year combined the recognition of the achievements of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children in our local schools with prize-giving for our portrait competition run in conjunction with this year’s Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month (GRTHM). We were grateful once more, for access to the splendid and historic setting of Leeds Civic Hall for this annual ceremony.

See and download photographs from the evening

Awards image

This year has seen the third GRTHM. It’s an event that is growing each year and this year included the reappearance of Baildon Fair which took place this year for the first time since 1937. The aim of the month is to raise awareness of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller history and culture and celebrate the music, art and contribution they have made to the UK. The ceremony followed this lead, with art and music dispersed throughout the prize-giving.

Award image

Once more we were honoured to welcome very special guests to share in the occasion alongside the families of the children and young people.

We hope it was a memorable evening for all involved.

See and download photographs from the evening

Resources for schools

Materials for Raising Awareness

The Gypsy Roma Traveller Achievement Service in Leeds (GRTAS) has a range of resources that are great for raising awareness of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GRT) cultures in the learning environment.

They are specially useful for teachers, schools, youth groups and other learning establishments, who will be celebrating Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month in June and include these materials in the curriculum for all children.

Any queries: Phone Helen Crossley on 0113 395 2826 or
e-mail Helen Crossley

Find out about what resources are on offer and how to obtain them


Learning about GRT culture in schools

Workshops for Schools

The Gypsy Roma Traveller Achievement Service (GRTAS) are very pleased to offer excellent workshops for schools. They provide an exciting opportunity for schools to promote their equality, diversity and community cohesion agendas through the arts. These artists and performers offer skills and talents which have inspired many children and will have a major impact on your school. This work can be an exciting introduction to the GRT communities and help the school plan how best to celebrate Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month in June each year.

Read more


As of April 1 2011, Leeds City Council ended its contract with Education Leeds to provide educational support services on their behalf. These services have now merged back into Leeds City Council. References to Education Leeds may remain in the content and documents on this site.

Leeds City Council Logo



GRTHM 2013


Find art and French resources to use in classrooms during history month or any other time of the year.

Around the site

Art Gallery

Art gallery imageFerdinand Koci, the international Roma artist, exhibited his work again in as part of GRTHM 2010. To see some of his work click the link below.

See gallery >

More about Ferdinand >

See how to get signed limited edition beautiful A3 prints of Ferdinand Koci's work.

More here >

New Book

Acclaimed Scottish storyteller and author Jess Smith has a new book.

Find out more >




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