I’ve seen studies

<< BEFORE: Rabbit discusses education problems and then hears strange slurping noise…  

Rabbit likes to ask lots of tough questions, but problem is he does not have any answers or even experience of his own!

NOTE: See COMMENTS (below) for links to such studies & related articles…

NEXT: Rabbit walks home feeling like inexperienced inadequate boorish failure under beautiful mountain sunset >>



  1. Ah, Rabbit needn’t feel boorish. He raises a lot of perfectly valid and thoughtful questions. And the teacher has some valid concerns as well. Of course avoiding fleas is entirely logical, but it’s the simultaneous avoidance of the larger problem at hand that really helps perpetuate what is a vicious cycle. It would be nice if people like the teacher could step back and look at the larger picture and recognize that whatever policies are in place now aren’t helping/working, but doing the opposite. It’s an extremely complicated problem for which there is no easy solution. And if an effective solution was actually conceived and implemented, it would likely be met with varying degrees of resistance from both Roma and Slovaks, for a variety of reasons.

    As a side note, it’s brilliant the way you’ve illustrated the double-strandard with the teacher/mom complaining of her children getting fleas from Roma, while at the same time offering milk to Rabbit from the container that her sick, coughing child had just been drinking from.

    1. Thanks Jeff — I wrestle long and hard with stories like this, because of controversial subject matter and also because of how the telling might reflect on my kind, generous, patient hosts. But yes, you notice essential contextual connection to the conversation which I can not communicate outside comics medium. — M
      PS. Please note updated ameliorating final 2 panels of Milk Box!

  2. Can you provide such a study? Thanks.

    Also, this is families job, not schools job. Schools job is to teach kids to read, write, count, et cetera, and to reinforce healthy living through hygiene and all, but it can not possibly teach these things from the very basics.

    Not even considering the attendance rates of the problematic gypsy children….

    1. Peter —

      Well, you see where Rabbit comes from in US in elementary schools they do teach basic hygiene, brushing of teeth, washing, etc. — but you are right, schools do not “start from zero” in this work.

      And please notice, Rabbit says “seen” and not “read thoroughly”… Nonetheless, here are some related links to explore:

      With enough such links in hand, I would like to make special post of resources….

      — Marek

  3. I work with kids from mobile communities in urban slums in Pakistan. Our “schools” are open-air structures based right in the heart of settlements, and the idea is to facilitate entry into mainstream schools after Grade 5. Oh, Rabbit.

    1. Wow, that must be very different from Slovakia … Do you teach hygiene & social skills?
      Don’t worry, Rabbit will get “into gear” soon…

      1. We do indeed! Well, we do try.

        We also try and weave in civic values wherever we can. Volunteer activities are a great way of facilitating exposure for the kids – just have to be careful in terms of giving the right kind of orientation to the volunteers. Never-ever-ever do we want to facilitate condescension!

  4. Rabbit’s observations are pertinent. Thanks for using the powerful medium of comic strip to stimulate thinking and discussion on such important issues.

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