INTRODUCTION

The Equality Act 2010 brings together for the first time all the legal requirements on equality that the private, public and voluntary sectors need to follow. It affects equality law at work and in delivery all kinds of services and in the context of this policy in all aspects of the provision of an education.

The Equality Act 2010 replaces all the existing equality law including:

  • The Equal Pay Act 1970 The Sex Discrimination Act 1975
  • The Race Relations Act 1976
  • The Disability Discrimination Act 1995

Whether at work as an employee or in using a service, the message (or purpose) of the Act is that everyone has the right to be treated fairly at work or when using services.

The Act protects people from discrimination on the basis of certain characteristics and they vary slightly according to whether the person is at work or using a service.

There are NINE ‘protected characteristics’ employees might have. They are:

  1. Age
  2. Disability
  3. Gender reassignment
  4. Marriage or Civil Partnership
  5. Pregnancy and Maternity
  6. Race
  7. Religion or belief
  8. Sex (gender)
  9. Sexual orientation

Equality of opportunity is a fundamental aspect of the ethos at Woodlands Infant and Nursery School. It is the responsibility of the governors, Executive Headteacher and all personnel involved in the school to provide leadership in the development and implementation of effective policies to promote equality of opportunity.

PURPOSE

Following the spirit of the school’s development plan, we aim to ensure that every pupil and teacher is given an equal opportunity to achieve their full potential. In addition, each individual is entitled to learn, teach or work in a supportive environment and to benefit from the diversity of our school community.

To meet these aims, we are committed to:

  • Equal access and treatment for everyone
  • Being responsive to changing needs
  • Educating and informing children, staff and parents about the issues in this policy
  • Avoiding prejudice
  • Promoting mutual respect, regardless of differences
  • Working to an agreed code of conduct which can be modified, monitored and evaluated in accordance with current best practice in the area of equal opportunities.

OBJECTIVES

  • To promote a positive self-image in all children and to respect their individuality, providing for all pupils according to their needs.
  • To ensure equality of opportunity permeates the whole curriculum and ethos of the school.
  • In delivering the curriculum, to ensure it contains non-stereotypical images in order to overcome preconceived ideas of gender, ethnic origin, culture or religion.
  • To include in resources books, materials and equipment that are multicultural and non-sexist, providing positive images of all groups.
  • To ensure that the organisation of the school is sensitive to the needs of all.
  • To acknowledge the richness and diversity of British society and to help prepare children for their part in that society.
  • To develop a positive attitude to equal opportunity by all staff, parents, volunteers, governors, children and all who participate in the school.

THE LAW

Unlawful discrimination occurs when one person receives less favourable treatment because of their having one or more protective characteristic. The law is extensive and complex especially when the implications of the Human Rights Act, also feature in considerations. Accordingly, the school’s equal opportunities co-coordinator / SENCO will provide general guidance on matters which require clarification whilst ensuring professional guidance is sought when specific reference is needed to the Equality Act 2010 and relevant EU legislation.

DIRECT AND INDIRECT DISCRIMINATION

In most cases, the nature of less favourable treatment will be clear and common sense will dictate the necessary action to take, usually after reference to the Executive Headteacher. Where doubt exists, then reference should be made to the Executive Headteacher or the school’s equal opportunities co-ordinator / SENCO or Chair of Governors.

STAFF

The school values diversity amongst the staff. In all staff appointments the most suitable candidate will be appointed on professional criteria, with recruitment carried out ensuring safeguard children and safer recruitment in education procedures are adhered to, and in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Equality Act 2010.

IDENTIFICATION

Teaching staff and school volunteers will observe children at play and in classrooms always seeking to identify good and unacceptable behaviour.

In instances of unacceptable or inappropriate behaviour suitable counselling will be given at the time but repeated abuse will be recorded for discussion with the Executive Headteacher, parents and governing body.

Suitable training is to be undertaken by relevant teaching staff and governors to aid the identification of discrimination, learn techniques for managing abuse and to keep abreast of changes in the law.

This document and others relevant to standards of behaviour (Behaviour and rewards Policy) will be available on the school website for reading by the governing body and staff.

An “Open Door” policy will continue to operate in order that parents may discuss their concerns with the Executive Headteacher and staff. Equally, early advice should be given of any protective characteristic (or suspected protected characteristic) which may affect a child’s performance and/or behaviour at school.

Consultation with parents, GPs, health visitors, speech therapists etc. may also be sought in appropriate circumstances.

The school will maintain clear, factual and up to date records to identify patterns of behaviour which are not following the behaviour expectations of the school. Actions to make reasonable adjustments will also be documented.

POSITIVE ACTION

Unlike positive discrimination, which is in itself unlawful, positive action will be fostered in line with current best practice:

  • Staff will continue to use examples in their teaching to demonstrate the benefits of a mixed society and the contributions made to our history by individuals of all genders, races, age groups etc.
  • Role playing is seen as an essential means to address the issues raised in this area. • Knowledge is encouraged in all aspects of school life to show the advantages of pooling experience, knowledge and various points of view.
  • Job vacancies will be widely advertised to promote a diversity of candidates.

DAILY PROCEDURES

  • Children, parents and staff will be given equal treatment, equal opportunity to voice their opinions and equal access to resources.
  • Teaching material and other forms of communication are reviewed on a regular basis to ensure compliance with this policy.
  • Positive action, especially by pupils, will continue to be rewarded and made known to the wider school community.
  • Assembly times will reinforce good behaviour in the area of equal opportunities and involve peer groups in the approval (or disapproval) process.
  • Staff meetings will include equal opportunity issues, with particular reference to this policy and its inclusion in curriculum activity.
  • Clear and constant messages will be given regarding the school’s values and disciplinary procedures in line with the policy on behaviour.

INVOLVING PARENTS

As with all school policies, there is a critical role to be played by parents. Several aspects of this document have referred to the consultation process and the need to reinforce good behaviour in our community.

Parents will continue to be informed of their child’s behaviour, when this reaches the expectations set in the behaviour policy, and when it does not. This will be together with any aspects of their attitude towards others which gives rise to concern. Initial liaison regarding discrimination problems is expected to be of an informal nature – by the class teacher or Executive Headteacher.

However, records will be maintained of abuses and ongoing concerns will be discussed in depth by the Executive Headteacher and parents. Parents who are unavailable/unwilling to discuss individual cases will receive a letter inviting their response, a copy of which will be held on file.

All forms of discrimination by any person within the school are to be treated seriously and a careful note kept of any such incidents. It must always be made clear that such behaviour is unacceptable. Subsequent incidents should be reported to the Executive Headteacher or Deputy Headteacher – when a decision will be made as to involvement of the parents of the children concerned.

In the event that formal disciplinary proceedings are contemplated, or if co-operation is not evident the governing body will be consulted and a plan of action agreed. Continued unacceptable behaviour could result in exclusion procedures for the pupil.

SUCCESS CRITERIA

The measurement of equal opportunities in practice requires a variety of criteria to be assessed, of both a quantitative and qualitative nature. Key areas for consideration are:

  • The level of complaints by pupils, staff and parents will be reviewed each term or more frequently if unsatisfactory trends are evident.
  • Attendance records, punctuality and unauthorised absences will be examined in this respect.
  • The degree of pupil-pupil and pupil-teacher interaction during learning/play periods is deemed equally important.
  • Progress form starting points and % of children reaching end of year and key stage expectations need constant attention. Samples analysed to detect signs of underachievement against baseline assessments, teachers’ expectations etc. will pay regard to equal opportunities factors.

PRACTICE AROUND THE SCHOOL

  • All children should have work displayed at some time during the school year.
  • Children with special educational needs must be given equal access to the curriculum.
  • All children have equal access to extra-curricular activities.
  • Staff need to have an awareness of the demands of the individual and endeavour to give equal attention and speak in the same manner to all children, avoiding bias when praising or disciplining.
  • All children should have equal opportunities to help with jobs and mixed groups should work together to carry out tasks when learning.
  • All children must have an opportunity to take books home to read.
  • Children should be involved in formulating class rules at some point in each academic year.
  • Parents and link governors have an opportunity to view the type of teaching/work undertaken in support of the curriculum. This should encourage an independent perspective of the way in which the ‘wider community’ is portrayed.

Our aim is to have a zero incidence of, and tolerance for, discriminatory behaviour. The school should exude a confident, progressive approach to the aims set out in this policy, actively demonstrating the benefits of mixed contributions and teamwork.

MANAGEMENT AND ORGANISATION

  • To review all policies to ensure that each area, whether a whole school issue or a curriculum subject, takes account of the specific ways in which equal opportunities applies.
  • To monitor academic achievement by analysing end of EYFS, phonics screening and end of KS1 SATs results. Other relevant pupil data scores, including LEA information, by sex, race & ethnicity will be monitored.

ETHOS

  • To ensure that displays around the school reflect a variety of positive images which are free from stereotyping associated with gender, race or physical disability
  • To plan a programme of assemblies which includes opportunities to challenge prejudice, question stereotyping and enhance understanding of our multi-cultural and pluralistic society.
  • To ensure that all assemblies are free from messages or language which undermine principles of tolerance or understanding .
  • To encourage adults from a broad spectrum of society to visit the school, particularly to demonstrate role models which are non-traditional for their sex, ethnicity or disability.
  • To devise schemes of playground use which avoid domination of space by any particular group.
  • To provide training and support in order to ensure that playtime supervisors uphold the principles of equal opportunities in their work with children.
  • To include in the school’s behaviour policy a reference to the avoidance of sexual or racial harassment and abuse, together with clearly understood procedures for dealing with any occurrences.
  • To ensure that sanctions used in the school are the same for boys and girls and applied equally.
  • To encourage an understanding of the ways in which language can be used to stereotype and undermine confidence.
  • To make clear that sexist and racist abuse is unacceptable.
  • To ensure that school publications reflect the commitment to equal opportunities and are free from gender or cultural bias.
  • To provide access throughout the school site for wheelchair users and people with other disabilities, as resources allow.
  • To encourage and develop positive links with the local community.
  • To make all visitors feel welcome.

CLASSROOM PRACTICE AND DELIVERY

  • To ensure equal access to resources, equipment and toys.
  • To take steps to build the skills and confidence of children in areas where they may traditionally be lacking in confidence, e.g. dance or sewing for boys, football or construction for girls.
  • To ensure equal opportunities for talking and listening in whole class discussion, group work and paired work.
  • To divide teacher time equitably between girls and boys.
  • To create an environment in which co-operation is central and in which children will work in a range of grouping contexts (single or mixed sex, mixed ability, random or compatible) comfortably and with purpose.
  • To teach children the skills to resolve conflicts and become assertive.

CURRICULUM PLANNING & DESIGN

  • To review the taught curriculum and actively seek opportunities to address the issues of equal opportunities.
  • To ensure that multi-cultural issues are not presented in a tokenistic way
  • To be aware of, and challenge, bias and stereotypical viewpoints within our teaching and language e.g. only presenting images of Africa or India, as poor and rural
  • To draw on examples from many cultural traditions and recognise Britain as having a diverse cultural background.
  • To help children explore the idea of ‘stereotyping’ in order that they can make more informed choices in relation to their identity (i.e. gender, ethnic or cultural background, disability)
  • To be aware of the balance of male/female roles, disabled/able-bodied and roles from a variety of cultural backgrounds, when choosing historical figures or the work of artists, composers, authors etc. as a focus for a curriculum area.

ASSESSMENT

To monitor assessment procedures to ensure that they are not distorted by stereotyped attitudes and expectations.

RESOURCES

To prepare and select resources which are free from cultural or gender bias, wherever possible. Where their use is unavoidable, to employ biased resources as a means of provoking discussion of equal opportunities issues.

Equality Objectives 2017 – 2018

ObjectiveReasoning behind this:To achieve this objective, we plan to:Progress we are making towards the objective
To address cultural events through year assemblies to increase student awareness and understanding of issues in different communities.To provided children with a well -rounded education including learning how to work and play together and understanding and accepting people points of view, respecting and applying rules and understanding why these exist.-Have a range of cultural events planned throughout the school year.
- A clear plan for whole school assemblies covering a range of moral and cultural needs.
- Harvest festival produce goes to the local community.
- Shoe box appeal to other children in different country.
- Black British History.
- Diwali and Chinese New Year are celebrated in EYFS.
- Remembrance day.
- PHSE still planned in to look at how we have different ideas and beliefs and that we do not all have to think the same thing but we listen to one another’s ideas with respect.
To provide an environment that welcomes, protects and respects diverse people.To ensure that our pupil receive a holistic education.- Show how British values are represented in our school.
- Celebrate the success of all pupils.
- Look at our values and what they mean and how we can apply these in and out of school.
- Displayed and evident in the hall and pupil comments.
- This is done in pride cup where pupils achievements are celebrated in school but also sharing these they have achieved out of school.
- That we are all unique and different but all important as a member of Woodlands Nursery and infant school.
To ensure that all students are given the opportunity to make a positive contribution to the life of the school.To prepare pupils to contribute to society and culture as well as enabling them to participate actively and positively in their school life with us.
To encourage pupils to value themselves and their own unique contributions to their own and others lives as well as celebrating in their successes.
- Build on the role of School council and their voice in school.- Head boys and girls.
- School council contributing to school life and meeting to come up with ideas. They also attend Kyra school council events.
- Developing pupil independence to take a risk and give something a go. (Woodlands animals for building behaviours for learning.)
- Pupils lead and take part in sports competitions contributing to all areas of school life.