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Equal Opportunities and Race Equality

Equal Opportunities and Race Equality Policy

 

CONTENTS

  • Introduction
  • Equal Opportunities
  • Respect for All – Our Core Principles
  • Racism
  • A Statement of Values
  • Race Equality Statement
  • Key Issues
  • Policy Review

 

Introduction
This policy is designed as a point of reference and support for all members of our school community.
We intend that it should provide an agreed set of rules, procedures and decisions that are based on our whole school ethos and philosophy.
In essence, it is intended to provide a reflection of our philosophy, principles and expectations at Westmorland Primary School.


Equal Opportunities
At Westmorland Primary School, we aim to ensure that all pupils and staff are valued equally, regardless of their personal circumstances, culture, religion, gender, sexuality, colour of skin or background.


The following paragraphs seek to provide an explanation of the equal opportunities context in which our school works. They are intentionally written in child friendly language, so that they may be shared with and understood by all pupils as well as staff within our school.


Respect for All – Our Core Principles
At Westmorland, we believe that every person is equally important and that no one has the right to harass, insult or cause offence to any other person for any reason. We particularly reject the way that some people abuse others:
 Because of the colour of their skin
 Because of nationality or accent
 Because of religion
 Because of their looks or what they wear
 Because they are fat or thin, tall or small
 Because of disability
 Because they are male or female
 Because of their ability or lack of ability
 Because of their likes or dislikes
 Because they are popular or unpopular
 Because they are richer or poorer, older or younger.
 Because of their gender
 Because of their sexuality (or perceived sexuality)


We are all individuals with differences, but we are all members of Westmorland and can learn from each other.
We aim to ensure that the experiences of all pupils are valued and reflected in the curriculum.

We value the richness of the multi-ethnic world we live in.
We aim to celebrate the individual and their merits.


Racism
As outlined in our race-equality statement, we do not tolerate racism of any kind. At Westmorland we will use the following definition of racism:


We believe that we all belong to one race, the human race. But everyone is different. We are all individuals. Racism is the mistaken belief that our differences make some people better than others. Racism is most common when people talk negatively about colour of skin, culture or religion. It can also include negative attitudes to the sexuality of others.


As staff at Westmorland Primary School, we aim to provide an inclusive atmosphere based on respect for others and ourselves. To achieve this, we have agreed upon the following statement of values, which will be intrinsic to the whole ethos of the school:


1. Every child deserves to be respected and valued.
2. We will promote pupils’ self-esteem and emotional well being and help them to form worthwhile and satisfying relationships, based on respect for themselves and for others.
3. We aim to prepare our pupils to be full citizens who value and respect today’s diverse and multi-ethnic society.
4. We aim to meet all pupils’ needs and encourage them to reach their full potential.
5. We do not tolerate any form of harassment, especially racial or homophobic harassment.
6. We will encourage children’s sense of fairness and develop a concern for justice.
7. We will develop skills of working together with other people and successfully resolving conflict without violence.


Race Equality Statement
At Westmorland Primary School we believe that we play a vital role in preparing our children for effective participation and responsible citizenship in British society.


We recognise the importance of having race equality high on our agenda, through our overall operation and also by the curriculum in which our children engage.


As such, we recognise that we are uniquely placed to contribute to a society free from racism and we recognise our duty to tackle racism and promote racial equality and good race relations. As teachers we would be failing in our responsibility if we did not prepare our children for the multi-cultural, multi-racial community, which is Britain today.
Because the population in our community is predominately white, we recognise that racism may draw strength from ignorance, fear and antagonism. It is essential that all staff recognise the vital role that our school can play in influencing our pupils’ views and attitudes and working towards racial equality.


At Westmorland Primary School, we will endeavour to show through our curriculum, attitudes and values that we celebrate cultural diversity and we will not tolerate, or condone through any inaction, any form of racist behaviour.


The following paragraphs outline our commitment to race equality.

 

  • At Westmorland Primary School, we are fully committed to ensuring that race equality is a core feature of all our policies and practices in school.
  • School staff members and school governors are aware of the diverse and harmful effects of racism, which creates false divisions across communities resulting in racial discrimination and disadvantage, racial hatred and racial harassment. We are committed to working with all communities to eliminate racism.
  • We are committed to the provision of equal access to services and equal treatment of all people who use our services. In respect of racial equality this is regardless of national origins, colour, ethnic origin or religious beliefs.
  • We will ensure that our structures, procedures and practices do not discriminate either directly or indirectly on racial grounds, both as a provider of education and as an employer.
  • We recognise that racial discrimination and disadvantage impact on different communities in different ways. We have a responsibility to inform ourselves of ways to meet the requirements of minority ethnic people and to act accordingly. We are committed to our responsibility to identify the concerns and requirements of the range of ethnic groups that make up our community.
  • We will develop and pursue a strategy to raise attainment, promote social inclusion and maximise participation in learning for all ages that takes in to account the specific needs of minority ethnic communities. In doing so we will work closely with relevant partners, pupils, governors, parents and the community that we serve.

 

Key issues to address
We believe that there are many ways to combat racism and promote equality of opportunity. The suggestions below are by no means definitive. This policy will be regularly updated, taking in to account any further suggestions from staff.


1. Curriculum planning, teaching and assessment
Assessment:
 All assessments must be checked and monitored for any disadvantage to pupil achievement through cultural bias.
 Ethnic monitoring and outcomes of assessments must be used to identify the specific needs of children and to inform school of any issues that need addressing. Any disparities that may be uncovered must be carefully monitored in order to raise attainment.


 For further guidance, please refer to the assessment policy.


Teaching:
 Teachers should be aware that their expectations could affect achievement, behaviour and status of the children they teach. All staff should maintain the highest expectations of all children.
 Differentiation –we will ensure that each child is given access to the best possible level of achievement through a range of strategies for differentiation. These will include differentiation through formal and informal strategies – task, outcome, response, resource, grouping or support.
 All teachers will use a variety of teaching methods that take in to account the needs and learning styles of all children.


Curriculum:

  •  We will acknowledge and build in to the curriculum planning process the contribution of world cultures.
  •  We must show by our curriculum that cultural diversity is welcomed in our school.
  •  Building upon the cultural diversity of our community will be seen as a process of curriculum enrichment.
  •  Teaching and extra curricular activities will actively celebrate and cherish cultural, religious and linguistic diversity.
  •  We will strive to develop evidence of anti racist work in the curriculum.
  •  We will build equality issues into the curriculum planning process.
  •  We will recognise the changing nature of culture.
  •  We will promote mutual respect through acknowledgment of the source and achievement of all cultures.
  •  We will acknowledge the significant aspects of world cultures as exciting learning opportunities.
  •  We will communicate with parents regarding the provision of religious observance.
  •  We will ensure that the contributions of world cultures are included and acknowledged in the planning and teaching of the full range of National Curriculum subjects.
  •  We will ensure that the contributions of world cultures are included and acknowledged in the resources and school displays. We are committed to using resources that are inclusive of a variety of cultures. The resources in school should reflect, where possible, the cultural diversity that reflects Britain today. Care should be taken when choosing books and visual displays that they do not present negative images of people from minority groups.
  •  We will ensure that the contributions of world cultures are included and acknowledged in the extra curricular activities we offer at school.
  •  We will raise awareness of the unfairness and injustice of stereotyping through the planned curriculum, assemblies, resources and display.
  •  We will continue to incorporate new ideas into lessons and units.
  •  From their time in the foundation stage, children are taught that everyone is unique and special. Differences are celebrated. Links to Race Equality can be found through the areas of development “Personal and Social Development” and “Knowledge and Understanding of the World.” Children are encouraged to explore and celebrate their own culture as well as those of their peers.

 

2. Secure whole school commitment
Whole school commitment will be developed through the following avenues:

  •  Assemblies
  •  Circle time
  •  Displays
  •  Resources
  •  Parental involvement
  •  Improved communications between members of the school community
  •  School procedure for dealing with racist incidents
  •  Training for all members including: parents, teachers, support staff, head, governing body

 

3. Raise awareness of particular issues

  •  We will ensure that all members of school realise that certain words are now considered illegal and offensive in the present day context, particularly when used to incite racism or homophobia.
  •  We will raise awareness of all pupils’ religious, cultural and dietary needs.
  •  We will raise awareness of cultural behaviour adapted from one generation to another.
  •  We will respect the traditions of all cultures. The ethos of the school should be one of respect for all persons entering the school. Respect must be shown for diversity of religion, diet, dress, language, accent etc.
  •  We must value tolerance as a step in the process towards mutual respect. We will promote mutual respect through individual and collective respect for strengths, abilities and contributions of all cultures.
  •  We will challenge and address any form of bullying, including racist and homophobic bullying. Please refer to the bullying policy for further guidance.
  •  Behaviour – we are committed to promoting high levels of behaviour in line with the school’s policy. All members of the school community will be informed of school expectations and procedures for maintaining a high standard of discipline. Please refer to the behaviour policy for further guidance.

 

4. Promote race equality and good race relations

  •  We will encourage understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity by increasing the number of cross-curricular and cultural links with the curriculum, building upon cultural diversity as a process of curricular enrichment. We will aim to promote equal opportunities and actively challenge racism through all aspects of the curriculum. Teachers should consider the strategic use of teaching materials that break down stereotypes.
  •  We will bring in a variety of visitors to school and arrange a wide range of trips throughout each academic year. All classes will be expected to plan at least one multi-cultural trip each academic year.
  •  We will celebrate and learn about a variety of festivals, including those that are traditional to the majority indigenous population.
  •  We will ensure that resources and displays provide positive images that reflect the cultural diversity of Britain and the world, and challenges stereotypes. All staff must take care that they do not present negative or stereotypical images of people from minority groups.
  •  We will ensure that all children and parents feel that school respects their languages and cultures. Children and parents should feel confident to speak and read their home language in school.
  •  We will aim to foster a positive self-image amongst all children, in line with the whole school ethos.
  •  We will help all children to understand what prejudice and stereotyping means, how discrimination occurs and how they can take a stand against all forms of racism and discrimination.
  •  We will ensure that classroom management encourages mutual respect and trust.
  •  We will ensure that all staff members are aware of cultural differences and able to respond appropriately to the needs of different children.

 

5. Recruitment of staff
We will promote equality of opportunity in the recruitment, promotion, appraisal, training, development and support of all our staff and treat all staff on the basis of their relative merits and abilities. We will ensure that no job applicant or member of staff will unjustifiably receive less favourable treatment on the grounds of race, colour, nationality or ethnic origins, sex or marital status, sexuality or disability. In addition, staff will be protected from discrimination on grounds of religion, political belief, socio-economic background, parental status, age and sexual orientation.


6. Relationship to other policies
At Westmorland Primary School we aim to implement this policy in all areas of work. This will involve evaluating all policies to ensure that they are in line with our race equality policy, and in particular aim to deal with differences in attainment. It is the responsibility of the head teacher to ensure that all policies relate directly to this policy.


This policy therefore needs to relate to the following school policies and procedures:

  •  Bullying
  •  Behaviour, discipline and exclusions
  •  Curriculum
  •  Pastoral care
  •  Partnership with parents and the community
  •  Staff recruitment and retention
  •  Assessment, achievement and test results
  •  Admissions and transfer procedures
  •  Attendance
  •  Membership of the governing body

 

7. Dealing with racist incidents
Racist incidents may take many different forms and may not be immediately obvious. It is important to recognise a racist incident is distinct from other forms of bullying and therefore needs a different response.


The Home Office Code of Practice uses the following definition, which will be adopted, by school:


A RACIST INCIDENT IS ANY INCIDENT, WHICH IS PERCEIVED TO BE RACIST BY THE VICTIM, OR AN OTHER PERSON.


We will deal with racist incidents, using the following guidance:

  •  Racist or homophobic behaviour of any kind is totally unacceptable in our school, and will not be tolerated.
  •  Our aim is to eliminate racial discrimination in our school community.
  •  All staff must follow the agreed school procedure for dealing with racist incidents, in line with Stockport LEA policy of November 2004.
  •  No member of staff should ever ignore any form of racist or homophobic abuse: such behaviour would be regarded as unprofessional and against our whole school ethos.
  •  It must be clear to all members of the school community that we will not tolerate or condone through inaction, any form of racist behaviour.

 


The following points outline the school’s procedure for dealing with racist incidents. Further support and advice is always available from Martin, Jacqui or Jackie.


 All incidents of racism and racial harassment will be recorded and reported to senior management team, parents, governors and the LEA., who all will be informed of the nature of incident and the action taken to deal with it. We will keep a record of all racist incidents so that we can assess the pattern and frequency of such incidents with a view towards informing future action.


 This will be done on the agreed format held by the head teacher.


The following paragraphs provide a brief guidance of how to deal with racist incidents. It is important to remember that the area of racism is very sensitive. Support and advice is always available form the head teacher.


Indirect (institutional) racism will be tackled by ensuring that:
- Assessments are fair to all pupils from all ethnic groups.
- Admissions, disciplinary and exclusions procedures are fair to all pupils
- Attainment, progress and the SEN register are monitored by ethnicity: any disparities will be identified and appropriately addressed by the school.
- Expectations of all children are high.
- Images around school reflect the diverse society we live in and the curriculum draws on and celebrates this diversity.
Direct racism will be tackled by ensuring that:
- All incidents are recorded and monitored on the agreed format.
- All incidents are referred to the head teacher or a senior member of staff in the absence of the head teacher.
- All incidents will be reported to the governors, including pattern, frequency and an overview of action taken and preventative approaches in place.
- The governors will report to the LEA annually.
- The head teacher will see all perpetrators of racist incidents.
- All victims of racist incidents will be supported, in line with the LEA guidance.
- Parents of the perpetrator and victim will be informed and invited in to school to discuss the matter with the head teacher.
- Any incidents involving members of staff will be reported to the head teacher immediately. The school does not tolerate racist behaviour by any members of staff and once informed of any incidents, the head teacher will determine the appropriate course of action, in line with LEA guidance.


8. Consultation process
This updated policy will be presented to staff, parents and governors in the Summer term of 2009 for consultation and approval.


9. Responsibilities for implementing policy

  •  The governing body is responsible for ensuring that the school complies with the Race Relations legislation.
  •  The head teacher and governing body are responsible for implementing, developing and monitoring this policy.
  •  The head teacher is responsible for ensuring that all staff members are aware of their responsibilities under the policy and they have regular and appropriate training that supports and enables them to fulfil these responsibilities.
  •  All staff will receive training on the school’s race equality policy and on racial harassment policies and procedures.
  •  The race equality policy will form part of the induction programme for new staff and governors.
  •  The chair of governors, the head teacher, the senior management team and the person responsible for race equality are responsible for co-ordinating race equality work and are also responsible for dealing with incidents of racism.
  •  Implementation of this policy will be immediate
  •  All teachers will be responsible for sharing the issues of this policy with their pupils, perhaps through the medium of circle time where appropriate. Whole school assemblies will also share the main ideas with all children in the school. Children must be encouraged to report incidents immediately with the trust that they will be dealt with effectively.
  •  This policy will be communicated to parents, children, teaching staff, support staff, governors, job applicants and school visitors. All staff will be regularly informed of the importance of this policy in the context of the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000.

 

10. Breach of policy
Any breach of this policy by staff will be subject to disciplinary procedures.


11. Review of policy
We are committed to raising awareness of the changing nature of culture and the need for ongoing review and evaluation of this policy document to e ensure that it is relevant to all members of the school community.
The governing body and head teacher are responsible for ensuring that the policy and its related provedures are implemented and assessed. Ensuring that the policy and its impact is a regular agenda item at the governors’ annual meeting will ensure that this requirement is met.

 


Ratification
This policy was agreed and adopted by our governing body
Signed
(Date)

Date for review:


10. Breach of policy
Any breach of this policy by staff will be subject to disciplinary procedures.


11. Review of policy
We are committed to raising awareness of the changing nature of culture and the need for ongoing review and evaluation of this policy document to ensure that it is relevant to all members of the school community.
The governing body and head teacher are responsible for ensuring that the policy and its related procedures are implemented and assessed. Ensuring that the policy and its impact is a regular agenda item at the governors’ annual meeting will ensure that this requirement is met.


This policy will be monitored and reviewed annually.
Last reviewed: March 2009.
A full review will take place every 4 years.

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