Equality Scheme

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[cms_heading title=”Equality Scheme” title_color=”#1e73be” title_font_size=”62″ title_align=”center” line_color=”#1e73be”]

At Mytham we offer a curriculum which will enable our children to stand up to intolerance in all its forms

RATIONALE

Mytham Primary School strives to provide an excellent education to ensure that all pupils achieve their full potential in the widest sense, regardless of differences that exist between pupils and their families in terms of protected characteristics. These include: race; individuals of all faiths and none; ethnicity; culture; age; sexual orientation; socio-economic background, gender (including transgender) and disability.  The school recognises that the society within which we live is enriched by diversity.  We are committed to ensuring that everyone within our school community is equally valued and always treated with respect and fairness. We tackle all types of bullying and hate crime.  We know that children live in families made up in different ways. These might involve: married and unmarried (including same sex partnerships); single parents/carers; extended family including main carers who are not the birth parent of the child. We acknowledge that we have a duty to teach the children about the diversity that exists in the world today so that they too respect, value and celebrate such differences.  Our Equality Scheme embraces the requirement for schools to promote British Values in all aspects of school life.

Summary of Legal Duties

The Equality Act 2010 replaced all previous equality legislation to provide a single, consolidated source of discrimination law.  The Act applies to all maintained and independent schools including academies.  The single Equality Duty has replaced the three separate duties on race, disability and gender.

The Act makes it unlawful for the responsible body of a school to discriminate against, harass or victimise a pupil or potential pupil

  • In relation to admissions
  • In the way it provides education for its pupils
  • In the way it provides pupils access to any benefit, facility or service
  • By excluding a pupil or subjecting them to any other detriment

The Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) (sometimes referred to as the ‘general duty’)

In carrying out their functions, public bodies are required to have due regard to the need to

  • Eliminate discrimination and other conduct that is prohibited by the Act
  • Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it
  • Foster good relations across all characteristics – between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it

This means :

  • We will take reasonable and necessary steps to meet pupils’ needs by using a variety of approaches and planning reasonable adjustments for disabled pupils, enabling our pupils to take as full a part as possible in all the activities of the school. We will make reasonable adjustments to ensure the school environment and its activities are as accessible and welcoming as possible for pupils, staff and visitors to the school. We are also committed to ensuring staff with a disability have equality of opportunity.

 

  • We will actively encourage positive attitudes towards pupils and staff and expect everyone to treat others with dignity and respect.

 

  • We will regularly consider the ways in which the taught and wider curricula will help to promote awareness of the rights of individuals and develop the skills of participation and responsible action.

 

  • We will regularly consider the ways in which our teaching and the curriculum provision will support high standards of attainment, promote common values, and help students understand and value the diversity that surrounds them, and challenge prejudice and stereotyping.

 

  • We will monitor the progress and achievement of pupils by the relevant and appropriate protected characteristics. This information will help the school to ensure that individual pupils are achieving their potential, the school is being inclusive in practice, and trends are identified which inform the setting of our equality objectives in the school improvement plan.

 

  • We will collect and analyse information about protected characteristics in relation to staff recruitment, retention, training opportunities and promotions to ensure all staff have equality of opportunity. We will not ask health-related questions to job applicants before offering a job, unless it relates to an intrinsic function of the work they do. We will make reasonable adjustments such as providing auxiliary aids for our disabled staff.

 

  • We will ensure the curriculum is accessible to all pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) or those for whom English is not their first language. Auxiliary aids and services will be provided for them, where reasonable adjustments are required. By planning ahead, we will ensure that all pupils have access to extra-curricular activities and residential visits, and we will monitor the uptake of these to ensure no-one is disadvantaged on the grounds of a protected characteristic.

 

  • We will seek the views of advisory staff and outside agencies and partnerships with other schools where this is needed. In planning the curriculum and resources we will take every opportunity to promote and advance equality.

 

  • Bullying and Prejudice Related Incidents will be carefully monitored and dealt with effectively. Regular training will be given to both existing and new staff to ensure that they are aware of the process for reporting and following up incidents of prejudice-related bullying.

 

  •  We expect that all staff will be role-models for equal opportunities; deal with bullying and discriminatory incidents and be able to identify and challenge prejudice and stereotyping.

 

  • Throughout the year, we will plan on-going events to raise awareness of equality and diversity. Sometimes these will be in the form of RESPECT weeks. This may include a focus on disability; respect for other cultures; religions and beliefs; gender equality; developing community cohesion and an understanding of the effects of discrimination.

 

Policies

  1. The school has several key policies/documents that note the importance of avoiding discrimination eg Anti-bullying policy; Positive Behaviour; Physical Intervention Policy; Special Educational Needs and Disability Policy. We also have a statement on how the school promotes British Values.
  2. All school policies that relate to personnel matters are sourced from the HR support team at Bolton Local Authority and adhere to the principles and legislation laid out in the 2010 Equality Act.
  3. The school endeavours to consider equality matters whenever polices or practices are introduced or amended, to ensure appropriate consideration is given to the impact on specific individuals and groups.
  4. All staff, visitors, contractors, and employees from other agencies are expected to adhere to the school’s code of conduct, summarised in our staff handbook

–          We use appropriate and suitable language when addressing children or adults

–          We respect all individuals regardless of their age, ability, race, culture, faith or non faith, gender or sexuality

–          We promote equal opportunities for all

–          We challenge all incidents of discrimination and deal with them appropriately.

–          We acknowledge and respect that families are made up in varied ways, including married and unmarried (including same sex partnerships), single parents/carers, extended family including main carers who are not the birth parent of the child.

  1. We ensure pupil/parent/staff consultation is regularly sought in the development and review of this policy.
  2. We regularly seek the views of pupils, parents, advisory staff and visitors to the school, to ensure that the school environment is as safe and accessible as possible to all school users. We will regularly review our accessibility plans.
  3. We ensure that all staff are aware of their legal duties under the Equality Act 2010, the different forms of discrimination and what ‘reasonable adjustments’ mean in practice.
  4. We set out training and awareness sessions regarding Equality matters in the school improvement plan.
  5. We will consult with stakeholders, i.e. pupils, parents/carers, staff and relevant community groups, to establish equality objectives and draw up a plan based on information collected on protected groups and accessibility planning. These equality objectives will be reviewed and reported on annually.
  6. We will maintain and update an equality page on the school website to show how we are complying with the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) in the Equality Act 2010 and advancing equality of opportunity.

Monitoring

  • Our Pupil Welfare committee of the Governing board oversees the work school does around Equality. They monitor policies and the curriculum. They also ensure that we are upholding the principles of the Equalities scheme when carrying out school based learning walks/ observations
  • We have a Community Cohesion team made up of staff, parents and governors. They meet termly and plan the range of activities/events we plan, which foster our aim of valuing diversity

The School Curriculum and Learning Experiences

  1. The school plans and delivers a broad and balanced curriculum, including resources and content that teach children about the richness and diversity in our world e.g Y 3 link with a school in Zambia.
  2. We have a PHSCE/SMSC scheme of work in place, which underpins our Equality Policy. This has been written with diversity in mind and we carefully plan units of work which enable us to address issues around equality in a straightforward and age appropriate way. Topics include family life and different kinds of families; discrimination including the impact of prejudice based language, teasing, bullying and aggressive behaviour; human rights and the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of the Child. For example, in Early Years we ask children ‘Is it ok to call someone a name if their skin is a different colour to me?’
  3. Curriculum resources are evaluated and reviewed by the SMSC lead and staff to ensure they contain a representation of the different groups and diversity in our world. These are also viewed by Governors in the first instance.
  4. We work with local support groups such as Fort Alice (front line service for victims of Domestic Abuse) and Barnardo’s. Skilled and specialist practitioners from these groups offer training to our staff and in some cases they come into school and deliver sensitive programmes. Healthy Relationships delivered by Fort Alice to Y5 explores acceptable and unacceptable behaviours in a relationship.
  5. We have an established link with The Valley Primary School in Bolton. The Valley school’s pupils are mostly from Asian or other ethnic families whereas Mytham is 97% white British.  Our Year 1 children meet with their Year 1 children to learn about different cultures but also to take part in fun activities and understand that there are many similarities between themselves and children from a different cultural background.
  6. We are particularly proud of an annual project our Year 5 pupils take part in which is called ‘Little Lever Children Love Little Lever’. In this project they learn about Communities and how young people can enhance a community. They also reflect on how anti-social behaviour and hate crime can impact negatively on a community.
  7. Educational visits to enrich the RE curriculum include opportunities to broaden the children’s knowledge and understanding of different faith groups. We work with the Bolton Inter faith panel and offer experiences such as a Faith Trail where children in Y4 visit a church, mosque and Hindu temple.  In Y6 we have a Faith panel where children get to meet representatives from different faith groups (or non- faith) and have the opportunity to ask questions about their beliefs.
  8. RESPECT weeks; These are a key part of our Equality curriculum. Twice a year we dedicate a week to a RESPECT theme. In recent years these have been Faith, Disability and respect for adults.
  9. In 2015, we introduced 22 Values (for example: appreciation, honesty and empathy) which we focus on a month at a time over two years.  The head teacher’s assembly each week has a Values theme. Staff look out for children who are modelling the ‘Value of the month’ and ensure that they sing their praises.
  10. In 2016, we created a new school Vision statement. We aim to help children to become STARS: Successful, thoughtful, ambitious, responsible and strong in mind, body and strong together. Our work on Equality underpins this Vision.
  11. We discuss terminology in an age appropriate way and we handle sensitive issues such as discussing what gay means in a way which we feel a parent would be happy with ie factual, straight forward and honest e.g that gay is when a man loves a man or a girl loves a girl but we would not discuss any intimate details of these relationships. An exception would be if a child asked a direct question in the statutory Y6 Sex Education lessons. E.g  a child may ask about how same sex couples have an intimate relationship or if they can have children. This would be dealt with in a 1-1 situation away from peers and we would ascertain what the child knew first, and then either agree or dispel the ‘knowledge’.
  12. Children are taught about Children’s rights and that with rights comes responsibility. We ensure that children are aware of their rights and what to do if they feel that their rights or their friend’s rights are not being met. Essentially this is to tell a trusted adult.
  13. Equality related matters are regularly addressed through school assemblies or focused project work. For example, during the annual ‘anti-bullying’ week we teach the children about the different forms of bullying, the impact it has on people’s lives and the action they should take if they believe bullying is happening in our school. We explain that bullying can take many forms but often involves targeting someone’s vulnerability or picking on a difference. This is unacceptable in society and we reflect this in our school’s behaviour policy
  14. We continually adapt our curriculum to address current national issues. In 2015 we adapted by including British Values in our school aims and more recently we have been working on a response to ‘Hate Crime’. Our headteacher chairs the Bolton headteacher’s consultation group for Safeguarding. As a result, we aim to exemplify good practice.

Monitoring

  1. We monitor the academic progress and attainment of all our pupils and we track groups, with a particular focus on those who may be vulnerable eg children with a special educational need or disability, children from a minority group.  From this data we can evaluate the pupil outcomes and if necessary plan interventions to address any gaps.
  2. Governors evaluate the resources used for teaching about sensitive issues and also are familiar with the materials used for example the Barnardo’s ‘Real love Rocks’ programme.
  3. The SMSC subject leader oversees the PHSCE curriculum planning and offers support with sensitive topics, particularly for new members of staff.
  4. We review all our incident logs, behaviour reports and exclusion data to identify if there are any specific groups of children who are over represented.
  5. We regularly seek the views of children to understand how they experience life at Mytham. We have an active and very effective group of Young Leaders who represent fellow pupils. We encourage them to give their ideas about how we could make school better.
  6. Through parent meetings, questionnaires and Parent Governors we seek information from our community about the school’s performance and endeavour to address issues, including equality related issues, when these come to light.

Staff Training

  1. All staff are briefed on the Equality Duty as part of their induction. This is the first page in our Staff Handbook. Staff are reminded of this duty at the start of the autumn term when we review the staff handbook and these messages are reinforced throughout the year in meetings such as with School Meals staff.
  2. Every few years we return to our school Vision and Values and the Equality Duty. This is important as society is continually changing and we need to ensure that we are reflecting this in our ethos and actions. For example, in Autumn 2016 a steering group comprising key staff and governors evaluated our work around Equality. This resulted in whole staff training and communicating our commitment to Equality to parents.
  3. Specific training opportunities are sourced to address issues that have arisen through monitoring eg raising the achievement of boys; how to support children on the autistic spectrum within the mainstream class; strategies for managing challenging behaviour within the classroom.
  4. Subject leaders advise staff how to teach aspects of the school curriculum that will promote the values set out in our Equality Policy.
  5. All staff have received training on ‘British Values’ and how these encompass our existing school values and Equality Policy. This is part of the Induction programme for new staff, governors and volunteers.

Religious Observance

We respect the religious beliefs and practice of all staff, pupils and parents, and comply with reasonable requests relating to religious observance and practice; for example, the provision of a quiet space for undisturbed prayer or meditation, when this is requested.

Our assemblies are not faith based. We have a period of reflection in some assemblies which pupils with faith can use as an opportunity to pray, if they wish.

Complaints Procedure

Should there be any part of our policies or practices that give rise to a complaint from parents/carers, the school’s complaints procedure will be used to investigate these.

 

 

Scheme updated : January 2017

Equality Steering Group comprising members of Pupil Welfare Committee (Governors inc. parent Governors) , Senior Leadership Team and staff

 

EVALUATION OF EQUALITY OBJECTIVES January 2017

OBJECTIVE SUCCESS CRITERIA EVALUATION
Disabled students to go on school trips No child excluded from school visits We ensured that all children were able to attend educational visits having sometimes made reasonable adjustments such as additional staff supporting the pupil.
To avoid disability-related bullying incidents Children/adults  will not experience discrimination from Mytham pupils Staff explain to children about a pupil or adult’s disability in an age appropriate way. We encourage them to understand the disability and have empathy for the person. We respond to requests from parents regarding raising awareness weeks for certain disabilities such as Autism and Diabetes.

During the Paralympics we delivered assemblies around inspirational British Paralympians.

Ensure the Young Leaders includes disabled students. Have children with a disability in the Young Leader group We have achieved this
Introduce and embed British Values into our school aims and curriculum Three RESPECT weeks in 2015-16 were dedicated to British Values. We also plan to have two further RESPECT weeks  in 2016-17 ‘Everybody Equal ‘(Individual Liberty) and Democracy and rule of law
Continue to carry out School Linking projects

Year 1 : Oxford Grove

Year 3 : Zambia : Mulenga Basics School

Children will be aware of the lives of children from other cultures and this will enhance our British Values work Both year groups enjoyed successful links with the schools. Evidence of these linking projects can be found in school e.g displays and pupils work

MONITORING AND EVALUATION OF THE EQUALITY DUTY

Plan evaluated and reviewed January 2017

Next review January 2018

EQUALITY PLAN from  January 2017

OBJECTIVE SUCCESS CRITERIA EVALUATION
To revisit schools work including policy, practices and curriculum around Equality.

Equality Steering Group made up of staff and governors

Share with all stakeholders and create a set of simple statements about how we work for the staff handbook

All stakeholders will be aware of Mytham’s Equality principles.

All staff and governors will be committed to our Equality principles

Pupils will be aware that we teach them about Equality and to value everyone

Parents will be aware that promote Equality and understand why.

 
To rewrite the PSHE/SMSC curriculum to ensure there are opportunities in both Key Stages to learn about differences and similarities between people that arise from a number of factors including protected characteristics family, cultural, ethnic, racial and religious diversity, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation and disability.

e.g  March 2017 we will support Autism Awareness Week . Led by parents of Mytham pupils with ASD.

Children understand the nature and consequences of discrimination, teasing, bullying and aggressive behaviour (including online bullying) and the use of prejudice based language.

The number of reported incidents is very small

Children and parents are satisfied with the way in which the school deals with these incidents.

Children and staff will have a greater understanding of Autism and will therefore be more supportive of their friends

 

To continue to review curriculum resources including books, learning materials and images around school, to ensure there is an accurate and positive representation of the diversity in our world.

Particular focus on reading scheme materials

All subject leaders have identified and suggest appropriate resources

Evidence collected from lesson observations and learning walks show practice upholds school guidelines.

New resources have been purchased

We are committed to supporting the Local Authorities development work around ‘Hate Crime’ and will endeavour to incorporate this in our curriculum. There will be fewer reported incidents of discriminatory language towards others

 

We will adjust our SIMS monitoring of behaviour incidents in order to be able to monitor incidents related to discrimination. SLT will have an overview of how incidents are being dealt with and also if they are increasing or decreasing
All staff will revisit their subject policies to ensure that they reflect our Equality principles This will ensure that everyone is reflecting at all opportunities about the Equality issues linked to the subject and take steps to address them e.g gender and art; male and female artists; disability and sport ; inspirational sports men/women with disability
Continue to carry out School Linking projects

Year 1 : Oxford Grove

Year 3 : Zambia : Mulenga Basics School

Children will be aware of the lives of children from other cultures and this will enhance our British Values work

Evidence of these linking projects can be found in school e.g displays and pupils work

Ensuring disabled parents have every opportunity to be involved To ensure that disabled parents are not discriminated against and are encouraged to take interest and be involved in their child’s education
  • Ensure that the  parking space for disabled to drop off & collect children if kept free and available
  • offer a telephone call to explain letters home for some parents who need this
  • adopt a more proactive approach to identifying the access requirements of disabled parents when their child starts at the school
To promote the involvement of disabled students in classroom discussions/activities

ensure that positive attitudes are promoted throughout.

By developing our teaching and learning policy to ensure that:

·                teachers and teaching assistants give disabled pupils the opportunity to express their views;

·                disabled pupils have any necessary support to participate in discussions; and

·                teachers and teaching assistants show that they value the contribution of disabled pupils.