Roma gypsy children in France are being educated in a police station - because schools refuse to let the children learn in regular classes.

France 24 reported that the 20 children, aged between six and 12, are being taught on the second-floor of a police station in Saint-Fons, Lyon, by one teacher.

roma lyon

Roma people in the central French city of Lyon

The children do not receive school meals, and walk 1.5km home to their encampment by the city's bypass, according to the report.

France anti-racism charity MRAP called the situation a "ghetto" and said it denounced the move by authorities.

It said in a statement: "We condemn the refusal of the municipality to admit children in a school canteen, which forces them to return home by foot."

The makeshift school has "poor hygiene and safety," the charity said. "School should be a place where children integrate, but some officials have sought to make it a divider."

The temporary Roma camp in the city is controversial with Mayor Christiane Demontès attempting to have its inhabitants forcibly removed. Approximately 15,000 ethnic Roma, mostly originating from Bulgaria and Romania, live across France.