Equality and Diversity
In October 2010, the new Equality Act was introduced and it requires our school to:
- Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation.
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
- Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
There are nine protected characteristics under the Equality Act: age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation.
At our school we strive to do everything we can to make sure all people are treated fairly and that all our pupils have access to the best education they can. As such, we are determined to eliminate unfair and unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation. We also do everything we can to advance equality of opportunity and to develop good relations between groups within our school and the local community.
Our school encourages, celebrates and values the diversity of all our community. We actively promote the principle of equality for all. We aim to ensure that everyone within our community is treated fairly, with respect and dignity. We seek to eliminate any form of inequality, bullying or discrimination.
Children are educated through discreet lessons, whole school assemblies and enrichment opportunities to know and understand what protected characteristics are and how they can help us demonstrate that we are a community that respect fully the rights of each person and the diverse country that we live in.
PROMOTING THE NINE PROTECTED CHARACTERISTICS
The Equality Act became law in 2010. It covers everyone in Britain and protects people from discrimination, harassment and victimisation. Everyone in Britain is protected. This is because the Equality Act protects people against discrimination because of the protected characteristics that we all have. Under the Equality Act, there are nine Protected Characteristics:
- Gender reassignment
- Religion or belief
- Marriage or civil partnership
- Sexual orientation
- Pregnancy and maternity
Under the Equality Act you are protected from discrimination:
- When you are in the workplace
- When you use public services like healthcare (for example, visiting your doctor or local hospital) or education (for example, at your school or college)
- When you use businesses and other organisations that provide services and goods (like shops, restaurants, and cinemas)
- When you use transport
- When you join a club or association (for example, your local tennis club)
- When you have contact with public bodies like your local council or government departments
Protected Characteristics are actively promoted in school through:
- Our school ethos
- Our school core values
- Our school behaviour policy
- Our school equality policy
- Conscious role modelling by all adults in the school community
- Active engagement and communication with parents and carers
- Worship and Assemblies
- British Values themes
- Discussion within curriculum subjects, taking a cross-curricular approach
- Promoting articulation by building appropriate language and a coherent vocabulary
- Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE) lessons
- Religious Education (RE) lessons, HRSE lessons and Protected Characteristic talks
- Sporting, Art and Cultural Events
- Pupil Voice
- Educational visits
- Real-life learning outside the classroom
- Guest speakers
- Developing links with local, national and international communities
- Extra-curricular activities, after-school clubs, charity work and work within the local community
Embedding Protected Characteristics into the whole ethos of our school promotes:
- Self-esteem, self-knowledge and self-confidence
- Respect for democracy and support for participation in the democratic process
- Acceptance of responsibility for their own behaviour
- Respect for their own and other cultures
- Understanding of how they can contribute positively to school and home life and to the lives of those living and working in the locality and further afield
- An understanding of Equality, Human Rights and Protected Characteristics
- An understanding of how citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process
- An appreciation that living under the rule of law protects individual citizens and is essential for their wellbeing and safety
- An understanding that the freedom to choose and hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law
- An acceptance that other people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none) should be accepted and tolerated, and should not be the cause of prejudicial or discriminatory behaviour
- An understanding of the importance of identifying and combating discrimination