Meadow High School
Equal Opportunities Policy
Reviewed: May 2019
By: J Richards
Policy Number: 9.
Equal Opportunities Policy
Meadow High School is committed to promoting understanding of the principles and practices of equality and justice.
Our aim is to equip pupils with an awareness of our diverse society and to appreciate the value of difference. This will be achieved by adherence to the following principles:
• Discrimination on the basis of colour, culture, origin, gender, sexuality or ability is not acceptable.
• The primary objective of this school will be to educate, develop and prepare all our pupils for life whatever their gender, colour, origin, culture or ability.
• Pupils and teachers will further this objective by contributing towards a happy and caring environment and by showing respect for, and appreciation of, one another as individuals.
Managing Equality in Practice
• Admission The school follows the LA Admission Policies that do not permit sex, race, colour or disability to be used as criteria for admission.
• Registration Pupils' names will be accurately recorded and correctly pronounced. Pupils will be encouraged to accept and respect names from other cultures.
All forms of discrimination by any person within the school's responsibility will be treated seriously as such behaviour is unacceptable. Racist symbols, badges and insignia on clothing and equipment are forbidden in school. Staff should be aware of possible cultural assumptions and bias within their own attitudes. In all staff appointments the best candidate will be appointed based on strict professional criteria. Parents should be aware of the school's commitment to equal opportunities.
The school views linguistic diversity positively. Pupils and staff must feel that their natural language is valued.
The school's aim is to provide for all pupils according to their needs, irrespective of gender, ability or ethnic origin.
Aims and Objectives
- We do not discriminate against anyone, be they staff or pupil, on the grounds of their gender, race, colour, religion, nationality, ethnic or national origins. This is in line with the 2003 Race Relations Act and covers both direct and indirect discrimination.
- We promote the principles of fairness and justice for all through the education that we provide in our school.
- We ensure that all pupils have equal access to the full range of educational opportunities provided by the school.
- We constantly strive to remove any forms of indirect discrimination that may form barriers to learning.
- We ensure that all recruitment, employment, promotion and training systems are fair to all, and provide opportunities for everyone to achieve.
- We challenge stereotyping and prejudice whenever it occurs.
- We celebrate the cultural diversity of our community and show respect for all minority groups.
- We are aware that low self-image and ignorance cause prejudice and stereotyping. Through positive educational experiences and support for each individual’s point of view, we aim to promote positive social attitudes and respect for all.
The Role of the Parents
We expect our parents to uphold our principles of equality for all at Meadow High School and to adhere to our equal opportunities policy.
The Role of the Teachers
- The class teacher ensures that all pupils are treated fairly, equally and with respect. We do not discriminate against any child.
- When selecting classroom material, teachers pay due regard to the sensitivities of all members of the class and do not provide material that is racist or sexist in nature. Teachers strive to provide material that gives positive images of ethnic minorities and that challenges stereotypical images of any minority groups.
- When designing schemes of work, we use this policy to guide us, both in our choice of topics to study, and in how to approach sensitive issues. So, for example, history topics in our school include examples of the significant contributions women have made to developments in this country’s history. In geography topics the teacher attempts to counter stereotypical images of Africa and Asia and to show the true diversity of development in different parts of the world.
- All our teachers challenge any incidents of prejudice or racism. We record any serious incidents on racist bullying forms, and draw them to the attention of the Head Teacher. Teachers support the work of ancillary or support staff and encourage them to intervene in a positive way against any occurrence of discrimination, be it according to race, gender or ability.
The Role of the Head Teacher
- It is the Head Teacher’s role to implement the school’s equal opportunities and anti-racist policy and she is supported by the governing body in so doing.
- It is the Head Teacher’s role to ensure that all staff are aware of the school policy on equal opportunities, and that teachers apply these guidelines fairly in all situations.
- The Head Teacher ensures that all appointment panels give due regard to this policy, so that no one is discriminated against when it comes to employment or training opportunities.
- The Head Teacher promotes the principle of equal opportunity when developing the curriculum. She also promotes respect for other people in all aspects of school life, for example, in assemblies, where respect for other people is a regular theme, and in displays shown around the school.
- The Head Teacher treats all incidents of unfair treatment and any racist/sexist incidents with due seriousness.
The Role of the governors
- The governing body has set out its commitment to equal opportunities in this policy statement, and it will continue to do all it can to ensure that all members of the school community are treated fairly and with equality.
- The governing body seeks to ensure that people with disabilities are not discriminated against when applying for jobs at our school. The governors take all reasonable steps to ensure that the school environment gives access to adults and children with disabilities.
- The governing body will, in its annual report, make reference to arrangements for disabled pupils.
- The governors welcome all applications to join the school, whatever background or disability a child may have.
- The governing body ensures that no child is discriminated against whilst in our school on account of their sex, sexuality, religion, race or ability. So, for example, all children have access to the full range of the curriculum, and regulations regarding school uniform will be applied equally to boys and girls. School uniform is gender neutral. This means that pupils have the option to choose what they wear from the uniform and what makes them feel most comfortable as it is inappropriate to designate certain clothing items to one gender. If a child’s religion affects the school uniform, then the school will deal with each case sensitively and with respect for the child’s cultural traditions. (See access management action plan).
Monitoring and review
It is the responsibility of our governing body to monitor the effectiveness of this Equal Opportunities policy. The governing body does this by:
- monitoring the progress of pupils of minority groups and comparing it to the progress made by other pupils in the school;
- monitoring the staff appointment process, so that no-one applying for a post at this school is discriminated against;
- requiring the Head Teacher to report to governors on an annual basis on the effectiveness of this policy;
- taking into serious consideration any complaints regarding equal opportunity issues from parents, staff or pupils;
- monitoring the school behaviour and exclusions policy, so those pupils from minority groups are not unfairly treated.
- Equality of opportunity permeates the whole curriculum and will be reviewed regularly.
This policy should be considered alongside the following policies and guidance already in place in Meadow High School:
• Behaviour Policy • Race Relations Policy • Anti-Bullying Policy • SEN Policy • Physical Intervention Policy • LA Child Protection Procedures • LA Exclusion Procedures • Disability Equality Scheme