The Equality Act (2010) was introduced to combine the Sex Discrimination Act 1975, Race Relations Act 1976 and Disability Discrimination Act 1995. Previously public bodies were bound by these three sets of duties to promote disability, race and gender equality. In April 2011 these were replaced by a single public sector equality duty (known as the PSED or the equality duty). This new duty extends to all the aspects of a person's identity that are protected under the Equality Act 2010. These are known as protected characteristics and are:
marriage and civil partnership
pregnancy and maternity
religion or belief
Public bodies including schools and settings have a general duty to have due regard when making decisions and developing policies, to:
- Eliminate discrimination, harassment, victimisation and other conduct that is prohibited by the Equality Act 2010.
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
- Foster good relations across all protected characteristics – between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
To help schools and maintained EYFS settings in England meet the general equality duty, there are two specific duties that they are required to carry out. These are:
- To publish information to demonstrate how they are complying with the equality duty.
- To prepare and publish one or more specific and measurable equality objectives.
At Harrietsham C of E Primary School, our ethos vision and values ensure that every pupil and teacher is given an equal opportunity to achieve their 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
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
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, 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
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, helpers, governors, children and all who participate in the school.
Direct & 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 Headteacher. However, indirect discrimination can be more difficult to detect. Examples include:
An advertisement for new teaching staff which requires “applicants to be more that 5’10” tall”.
This is unlawful sex discrimination as the majority of women are under 5’10” in height and would be denied the same opportunity as men.
An admittance policy for pupils stating that “children must speak excellent English”.
This is unlawful racial discrimination as it is likely to preclude candidates from other countries/races.
Where doubt exists, ask a member of SLT.
The schools value diversity amongst the staff. In all staff appointments, the most suitable candidate will be appointed on professional criteria and recruitment carried out in a manner consistent with equal opportunity practice.
Inclusion at Harrietsham C of E Primary School
Harrietsham C of E Primary School maintains an inclusive approach to education and we aim to provide equality of opportunity for all children. All children are valued, respected and welcomed to the school whatever their additional educational need. (This may mean a specific learning, physical, behavioural and emotional, communication and language or health need.) More Able children, children who have English as an additional language and those on our pupil premium register are also recognised as having additional needs. There may also be stressful times such as illness, bereavement and family breakdowns when families and children require support. We will support their learning and ensure they are fully included in all school activities.
We recognise that there are some pupils who may require additional resources or extra support at some time in their primary school life and we aim to cater for the needs of all pupils. Early identification of a child’s needs is made by close consultation with parents and pre-school settings from school entry. Individual pupils are monitored through teacher assessment, pupil progress meetings and provision mapping.
The school has a SENCO to offer support to parents/carers who may have concerns about their child’s progress. When appropriate, referrals are made to specialist learning services, Early Help and medical services. Any referral to an outside agency is undertaken with parental consent.
Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)
The school has a policy for Special Educational Needs (SEN) and follows the Code of Practice. When appropriate, referrals are made to specialist learning services and medical services. Any referral to an outside agency is undertaken with parental consent. Further details can be found in our SEND Local Offer and SEN policy.
The staff work in partnership with parents/carers and pupils and liaise with external agencies to build upon pupil’s strengths and develop the individual.
We promote equality of opportunity for disabled people: pupils, staff, parents, carers and other people who use the school.
We are committed to ensuring that disabled pupils can participate in the school curriculum, school trips and take an active role in all extra-curricular activities. There is a designated disabled toilet. Our Accessibility Policy and Plan details facilities and future projects.
Equalities and Diversity
At Harrietsham C of E Primary School we aim to create an inclusive culture for all staff, pupils, families and visitors to the school. We recognise respect and value people’s differences and ensure that individuals or groups of individuals are treated fairly and equally and no less favourably, specific to their needs, including areas of race, gender, disability, religion or belief, sexual orientation and age. We promote equality and diversity treating all staff and students fairly ensuring equal access to opportunities to enable children and staff to fully participate in the learning process and achieve and equip children and staff with the skills to challenge inequality and discrimination.
English as an Additional Language (EAL)
We celebrate the fact that some of our children speak more than one language. We carefully monitor and track the progress of pupils with EAL to ensure they are not disadvantaged and recognise that they may require additional support to acquire the same competence in English as in their home language(s). This support is provided in class through carefully differentiated work and, where appropriate, through the additional support and specific teaching with a teaching assistant.
Children who are learning English as an additional language have skills and knowledge about language similar to monolingual English-speaking children. Their ability to participate in the full curriculum may be in advance of their communicative skills in English. We fully appreciate the necessity of a child retaining their first language and bonuses it brings.
At Harrietsham C of E Primary School teachers take action to help children who are learning English as an additional language by various means such as
accessing interpreters for assessment if indicated
ensuring that new vocabulary is repeated many times in different contexts through games, songs, photos, experiences and is re-visited;
displaying key vocabulary and using visual prompts
immersing the child in a language rich environment and ensuring that talking is used to support writing;
encouraging children to transfer their knowledge, skills and understanding of one language to another;
ensuring staff are aware of expected ‘norms’ for acquisition of a second language and contributory factors for each child
ensuring standardised assessments are used cautiously due to cultural differences
Children in Need (CHiC) / Looked After Children
We will provide a safe learning environment for Looked after Pupils ensuring that their individual needs are met by maintaining good communication with those caring for the child, social services and support services. We commit to attending review meetings and ensuring the targets set on Personal Education Plans are integrated into school life.
More Able Pupils
We are committed to providing an environment which encourages all pupils, including more able pupils to pursue a high level of performance in academic and non-academic areas.
We aim to encourage pupils to be independent learners, provide challenging work at an appropriate level and provide opportunities for pupils to work with like-minded peers both within school and the wider community.
Provision for pupils is through quality first teaching, differentiation and high challenge in the classroom, teacher expectation of pupil performance and additional learning in interventions.
Audit of existing achievement / provision
Wheelchair access via entrance to school corridors, all 6 classrooms and hall
Audible fire alarm
3 x disabled toilets
Some specialist accommodation for 1:1 and small group work
Emergency Evacuation plans written
Contrasting colours are used when areas of the school are redecorated
Wheelchair access to all areas including field
Wheelchair access to playground
Drop kerb at entrance to main school
Obtain data on future pupil population to facilitate advanced planning
Health questionnaire for all pupils (in prospectus) and data base of medical issues available to all relevant staff
Induction programme for all new pupils, special arrangements made where needed
Curriculum differentiated by task and outcome
Liaison with external services and agencies (physical, sensory, speech, learning behaviour, etc.)
Detailed pupil information given to all staff
TA deployment to cover a mix of curriculum needs
TA support to supervise regular physiotherapy / OT sessions /SLT
Special arrangements made for SATS (extra time applied for, use of amanuensis)
Specialist resources available to support specific needs (laptops, scissors, rulers, writing slopes)
Parent drop-in session / SENCo available for discussions
Pupils involved in EHCP
Peer mediation system in place
Specialist teachers supporting learning and giving pastoral and inclusion support
LA referral system (LIFT) used to maximise support available to pupils
Mentoring programme in place
BEAM sessions run by trained TAs / Class teachers
OT sessions such as Clever Fingers run by trained TAs
Training given to all teachers on use of KCC Mainstream Core Standards
Specific staff attended ASD Awareness training
Monitored attendance of school clubs for vulnerable groups
Mindfulness training for staff
Information given in letter, email and text form to parents
Promote other formats if required eg large print, other language