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The social awareness-raising campaign #LeonorDropsoutSchool was launched by the Fundación Secretariado Gitano in October 2015 to call attention to the alarming rate of early school education in the Roma community:  6 out of 10 Roma girls and boys leave the studies before finishing the Compulsory Secondary Education. Without this essential degree, their opportunities to change their future are scarce.

This campaign, which denounces the fact that the right to education of Roma boys and girls is not guaranteed in Spain, aimed that education became a “matter of national importance”.

Launch in social networks

The Spanish journalist Ana Pastor, ally of the campaign, raised the issue on the social network launching, intentionally, the following confusing tweet: ‘Royal controversy, my sources have just informed me that Leonor is about to leave the school when she finishes primary education (at 12 years old) #LeonorDropsoutschool’. Users of the networks thought that the journalist was referring to the Spanish princess Leonor, who at that time was 9 year old. This put thousands of people in the social network Twitter on the edge of their seats, making this a trending topic.

The big surprise came when the journalist, Ana Pastor clarified that she was not talking about the princess but about a Roma girl living in Galicia and who, according to statistics, was very likely to leave school at a young age.

The action shook up the social networks. It was trending topic in Spain and reached more than 15 million internet users only in the first 24 hours after its launch.


Focusing on the causes

The school drop out of Roma girls and boys has multiple causes: low school trajectory of families, school segregation, absence of specific programs, poverty and exclusion, low expectations of teachers in their capacities; no references of people with studies in their near circle; stereotypes and social prejudices, lack of involvement of families. These causes have to do with the lack of opportunities faced by children and the limited attention given to this issue from public policies, aggravated by regressive social measures and reduced spending on education in programmes for inequalities compensation.

The campaign invites the whole society to take a look at the Roma community without prejudice, not to blame the children of their educational situation and to change the discourse that condemns the children:From "If they do not study is because they do not want to", to a much more inspiring challenge: "If they study, we all win."

The campaign proposes a battery of actions for different actors, all of them responsible for ensuring that the right to education can be guaranteed for Roma children: society, teachers and schools, public authorities, families and Romani students. You can find the recommendations for each audience on the campaign website:

A campaign with a media impact

#LeonorDropsOutSchool is a campaign financed by the IRPF (Personal Income Tax) Programme "For Solidarity" of the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality and the European Social Fund's Operational Programme  Fight Against Discrimination with the support of the Ministry of Education.

The creative strategy is the result of the advertising agency DDB. The communications agency QMS carried out the public relations and dissemination actions. In addition, posters, other videos, brochures and specific pieces were created for dissemination of the campaign in social networks.

The campaign achieved great media impact with 143 appearances in different media which meant more than 38 million audience.

Romani ambassadors for the Education

Another objective of the campaign was to continue showing the progress of the Roma community in education and to show the face of those young Roma pupils who are in classrooms. They are overcoming many barriers to get educational success. The group of Romani Ambassadors for the Education was created in order to generate influence in their environment and counteract the social image of the Roma community through their testimonies.

Some of these young people passed through the programme of orientation and educational support of the FSG Promociona programme, a project that (between 12 and 16 years) and is giving excellent results showing that w it is possible to break the circle of school failure

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