Public Sector Equality Duty
At Wyvil School and Resource Bases for Speech, Language and Communication Needs, and Autism, the best interests of the child are at the heart of all of our actions. Wyvil aims to develop every child’s personality, unique talents and abilities to the full. Through the school’s stimulating and inspiring curriculum, the school aims to equip pupils with the resilience and perseverance to become creative and independent thinkers and to become learners for life within an ever-changing world.
The school actively encourages and supports respect for human rights, as well as respect for pupils’ parents, their own and other cultures and the environment.
The school aims to create a working environment that is positive, respectful and trusting, in which the development of all school staff is actively promoted.
High expectations and achievement for all pupils are invigorated through highly effective teaching, world-class opportunities and a supportive family ethos.
The Wyvil Core Values are essential to the way we foster a learning community within our school. They form the basis of the way pupils form relationships with each other and the adults in school; they act as a reference for how to respond to challenging situations and they provide the guidance that pupils need in order to develop effective habits of successful learners.
The Wyvil Core Values are;
- Be respectful
- Be positive
- Take responsibility
- Try your best
- Work together
The Wyvil School Reflection, which is read to pupils during the daily assembly, provides examples of what these values mean in practice.
The Wyvil Reflection
- Help us to be respectful to everyone in our Wyvil Family, to be kind, honest and helpful to everyone we meet
- Help us to be positive and to see the best in everyone, when things are challenging help us to be resilient and to persevere
- Help us to take responsibility for our words and actions, to recognize and nurture what we are good at and to learn from our mistakes
- Help us to try our best in everything we do and remind us that our efforts reflect on our school, family and on us as individuals
- Help us to work together as a team, to support each other and to recognize that together we can achieve great things
Our values and ethos ensure that we provide a commitment to ensure that equality of opportunity is available to all members of the school community. For our school this means, not simply treating everybody the same but, understanding and tackling the different barriers which could lead to unequal outcomes for different groups of pupils in school, celebrating and valuing the equal opportunity achievements and strengths of all members of the school community. These include:-
- Teaching staff
- Support staff
- Parents/ carers
- Multi-agency staff
- Visitors to school
- Students on placement
We want the children in our school to develop the self-esteem, awareness and self-confidence to play an active part in school life and be valued and valuable members of their communities and become conscientious, caring citizens.
The Public Sector Equality Duty 2011 has 3 main aims:
- Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimization and other conduct prohibited by the Act.
- 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.
We believe that equality at our school should permeate all aspects of school life and is the responsibility of every member of the school and wider community. Every member of the school community should feel safe, secure, valued and of equal worth. We want to provide an environment which is free from unlawful discrimination, harassment or victimization of any kind. We want to educate our pupils in an environment which recognizes, celebrates and draws upon the diversity of Lambeth and offers equal respect, appropriate support and fair rewards for all our pupils.
At our school, equality is a key principle for treating all people the same. The Equality Act defines eight ‘Protected Characteristics’ :
- Gender reassignment
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Religion and belief
- Sexual orientation
We are committed to giving all our pupils every opportunity to achieve the highest of standards. Within this ethos of achievement, we do not tolerate bullying and harassment of any kind. We actively tackle discrimination against those with a disability, racial discrimination, sexual harassment and discrimination and we promote equal opportunities and good relations between and amongst all. We aim to ensure that the school promotes the individuality of all our pupils, irrespective of ethnicity, attainment, age, disability, gender or background. We are committed to ensuring that positive action is taken where necessary to redress the balance of inequality that may exist. We aim to reflect the diversity of our local community and society and ensure that the education we offer fosters positive attitudes to all people.
Our school admissions policy is equally open to pupils of all groups.
We believe that these commitments are as important in the context of our school as well as in a school with a more ethnically diverse population.
Disability and SEN
In the Equality Act, ‘disability’ is defined as follows:
‘A person has a disability for the purposes of this Act if he/she has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on his/her ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.’
Not all children with disabilities will have SEN- the Department for Education defines children with SEN as:
‘Having learning difficulties or disabilities which make it harder for them to learn or access education than most other children of the same age.’
There can be a significant overlap between the two groups and a child may fall within one or more of the definitions.
The Equality Act makes it illegal to discriminate against a person with a disability for a reason related to their disability. It is also illegal to have rules, policies or practices which apply to everyone but which may disadvantage people with disabilities. Our school is required to make reasonable adjustments to allow children with disabilities to fully take part in the activities. These requirements are derived from the Disability Discrimination Act-
Less favourable treatment– children with disabilities are entitled not to be treated less favourably than non-disabled children for a reason relating to their disability, without reasonable justification.
Reasonable adjustments– children with disabilities are entitled to have reasonable adjustments made with respect to admission arrangements or in provision of education and associated services, to prevent them being placed at a substantial disadvantage, unless the refusal to make those adjustments can be justified.
Current Profile of the School
At present (2020) we have 296 boys and 227 girls on roll.
The largest ethnic cohort is Portuguese which makes up 30% of the school. The second largest cohort is Black African making up 22% of all pupils. The school has pupils from 18 of the 22 Lambeth reportable ethnic groups.
We have 82 children at SEN support and 91 children have an education, health and care plan.
School is not aware of any staff or governors who have a disability.
The topography of the premises currently makes it very difficult to accommodate wheelchairs on site. However the school is in the process of refurbishment which will make significant improvements in this area, including the installation of a lift. The third site of the school, currently being built will be fully compliant with BB103.
Legislation used as guidance when preparing this policy:
Public Sector Equality Duty 2011
The Equality Act (2006) amended the requirements of the Equal Pay Act (1970) and the Sex Discrimination Act
The Disability Discrimination Act (2005)
The Race Relations Act (2000)
The Human Rights Act (2000)
The Children’s Act (2004)
The European Directives
The Employment Equality ( Sexual Orientation) Regulations (2003) and the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations (2003)
The respective Codes of Practice associated with the legislation
Monitoring and review
Equality is identified as an area requiring careful and ongoing monitoring in the School Development Plan and due regard is given to the promotion of all aspects of equality within it. The Headteacher is responsible for co-ordinating the monitoring and evaluation. They will be responsible for:
- Leading discussions, arranging training, keeping staff updated in designated staff meetings which will include support to discuss qualities within the community
- Working closely with the governing body
- Supporting positively the evaluation activities that moderate the impact and success of the school’s work
We regularly review the impact of our policies on the needs, entitlements and outcomes for pupils, staff and parents from the equality strands referred to in this policy. We pay specific reference to the impact that our policies have on the attainment of pupils from different groups.
We make regular assessments of pupils’ learning and use this information to track pupils’ progress, as they move through the school. As part of this process, we regularly monitor the performance of individual pupils to ensure that everyone is making the best possible progress. We use this information to adjust future teaching and learning plans, as necessary. Interventions and resources are available to support groups or individual pupils where information suggests that progress is not as good as it should be. The governing body receives regular updates on pupil performance information.
School performance information is compared to national data and Local Authority data, to ensure that pupils are making appropriate progress when compared to all schools, and to schools in similar circumstances.
Promoting Equality through the Curriculum
Learning and Teaching
We aim to provide all our pupils with the opportunity to succeed, and to reach the highest level of personal achievement. To do this, teaching and learning will:
- Ensure quality of access for all pupils and prepare them for life in a diverse society;
- Use materials that reflect a range of cultural backgrounds, without stereotyping;
- Promote attitudes and values that will challenge discriminatory behaviour;
- Provide opportunities for pupils to appreciate their own culture and religions and celebrate the diversity of other cultures;
- Use a range of sensitive teaching strategies when teaching about different cultural and religious traditions;
- Develop pupils’ advocacy skills so that they can detect bias, challenge discrimination, leading to justice and equality;
- Ensure that the PSHE and Citizenship curriculum cover issues of equalities, diversity, religion, human rights and inclusion;
- All subject departments, where appropriate, promote and celebrate the contribution of different ethnic groups to the subject matter;
- Seek to involve all parents in supporting their child’s education;
- Provide educational visits and extra-curricular activities that involve all pupil groupings;
- Take account of the performance of all pupils when planning for future learning and settling challenging targets;
- Make best use of all available resources to support the learning of all groups of pupils;
- Identify resources that support staff development.
There is a consistently high expectation of all pupils regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, ability or social background. All pupils are encouraged to improve on their own achievements and not to measure themselves against others. Parents are also encouraged to view their own children’s achievements in this light.
To secure the desired outcomes we recognise:
- Teacher enthusiasm is a vital factor in achieving a high level of motivation and good results from all pupils;
- Adults in the school will try to provide good, positive role models in their approach to all issues relating to equality of opportunity;
- The school should place a very high priority on the provision for special educational needs and disability. We aim to meet all pupils’ learning needs including the more able by carefully assessed and administered programmes of work;
- The school must provide an environment in which all pupils have equal access to all facilities and resources;
- All pupils are to be encouraged to be actively involved in their own learning;
- A range of teaching methods are to be used throughout the school to ensure thateffective learning takes place at all stages for all pupils.
We aim to ensure that our:
- Planning reflects our commitment to equality in al subject areas and cross curricular themes promoting positive attitudes to equality and diversity;
- Pupils will have opportunities to explore concepts and issues relating to identity and equality
- All steps are taken to ensure that all pupils have access to mainstream curriculum by taking into account the cultural and lifestyle backgrounds of all pupils, their linguistic needs are taken into account and their learning styles are considered.
- All pupils have access to qualifications which recognise attainment and achievement and promote progression
Ethos and Atmosphere
We are aware that those involved in the leadership of the school community are instrumental in demonstrating mutual respect between all members of the school community;
- There should be an ‘openness’ of atmosphere which welcomes everyone to the school;
- The children are encouraged to greet visitors to the school with friendliness and respect;
- The displays around the school are of a high quality and reflect diversity across all aspects of equality of opportunity and are frequently monitored;
- Provision is made to cater for the spiritual needs of all the children through planning of both assemblies, classroom based and externally based activities.
Resources and Materials
When ordering new resources and materials we consider how they show equality.
The provision of good quality resources and materials within our school is a high priority. These resources should:
- Reflect “the reality of an ethnically, culturally and sexual diverse society;”
- Reflect a variety of viewpoints;
- Show positive images of males and females in society including people with disabilities;
- Reflect non-stereotypical images of all groups in a global context;
- Include materials to raise awareness of equal opportunity issues
- Be equally accessible to all members of school community consistent with health and safety
- Not include explicitly and implicitly racist, sexist, homophobic or ageist materials.
We recognise that it is important that at our school that all members of the school community use appropriate language which:
- Does not transmit or confirm stereotypes;
- Does not offend;
- Creates and enhances positive images of particular groups identified at the beginning of this document;
- Creates the conditions for all people to develop their self esteem;
- Uses correct terminology in referring to particular groups or individuals
- Use first language effectively for learning
It is the policy of our school to provide equal access to all activities from an early age.
We undertake responsibility for making contributors to extra-curricular activities aware of the school’s commitment to equality of opportunity.
We try to ensure that all such non staff members who have contract with children adhere to these guidelines and are DBS checked.
Provision for Bilingual Pupils
We undertake at our school to make appropriate provision for all EAL/bilingual children/groups to ensure access to the whole curriculum. These groups may include:
- Traveller and Gypsy Roma children;
- Those from refugee families;
- Pupils whom English is an additional language;
- Pupils who are new to the United Kingdom.
Personal Development and Pastoral Guidance
Pastoral staff takes account of disability needs, gender, religious and ethnic differences and the experience and needs of particular groups such as Gypsy Roma and Traveller, refugee and asylum seeker pupils;
All pupils are encouraged to consider the full range of career opportunities available to them with no discriminatory boundaries placed on them due to their disability, gender or race;
All pupils/staff/parents/carers are given support as appropriate when they experience discrimination. We also recognise that the perpetrators of discrimination are themselves sometimes victims of their personal circumstances and therefore where appropriate remedial work is done to ensure that the actions do not occur again;
Positive role models are used throughout the school to ensure that different groups of pupils can see themselves reflected in the school community;
Emphasis is placed on the value that diversity brings to the school community rather than the challenges.
Staffing and Staff Development
We recognise the need for positive role models and distribution of responsibility among staff. This must include pupil’s access to a balance of male and female staff at both key stages.
We undertake to encourage the career development and aspirations of all individuals.
It is our policy to provide staff with training and development, which will increase awareness of the needs of different groups of pupils in the various dimensions of equality of opportunity.
Staff Recruitment and Professional Development
All posts are advertised formally and open to the widest pool of applicants;
All those involved in recruitment and selection are trained and aware of what they should do avoid discrimination and ensure equality good practice through the recruitment and selection process;
The school encourage people from under-represented groups to apply for positions at all levels of the school
Access to opportunities for professional development is monitored on equality grounds;
Equalities policies and practices are covered in all staff inductions
All supply staff are made aware of equalities policies and practices;
Employment policy and procedures are reviewed regularly to check conformity with legislation and impact.
Harassment and Bullying
It is the duty of this school to challenge all types of discriminatory behaviour e.g.:
- Unwanted attentions (verbal or physical);
- Unwelcome or offensive remarks or suggestions about another person’s appearance, character, race, ability or disability, sexuality, gender (or transgender).
- The school has a clear, agreed procedure for dealing with incidents such as these.
Partnerships with Parents/Carers and the Wider Community
We aim to work in partnership with parents to help all pupils to achieve their potential.
We wish to affirm our continuing commitment to each out to all diverse groups within our immediate community and beyond. We would do this by:
- All parents/carers being encouraged to participate at all levels in the full life of the school;
- Encouraging members of the local community to regularly join in school activities e.g. school fair, black history month celebrations, Eid celebrations, harvest festival etc;
- Exploring the possibility of the school having a role to play in supporting new and settled communities.
In our school, all members of the school community have a responsibility towards supporting the equality agenda. Responsibilities are laid out as follows:
The Governing Body is responsible for ensuring that:
- The school complies with all equalities legislation relevant to the school community;
- The school’s Equality policy statement is maintained and updated regularly;
- That procedures and strategies related to the policy are implemented;
- The named Equality Governor will have an overview, on behalf of the governing body, on all racist incidents or incidents which are a breach of this policy and ensure that appropriate action is taken in relation to all said incidents
The Headteacher is responsible for:
- Along with the Governing body, providing leadership and vision in respect of equality;
- Overseeing the implementation of the Equality Poilcy;
- Co-ordinating the activities related to equality and evaluating impact;
- Ensuring that all who enter the school are aware of, and comply with, the Equality Policy;
- Ensuring that staff are aware of their responsibilities and are given relevant training and support;
- Taking appropriate action in response to racist incidents, discrimination against persons with a disability and sexual harassment and discrimination.
All staff are responsible for:
- Dealing with incidents of discrimination and knowing how to identify and challenge bias and stereotyping;
- Recording incidents on CPOMs
- Not discriminating on grounds of race, disability, or other equality issues;
- Keeping up to date with equalities legislation by attending training events organised by the school or Local Authority or recognised training provider.
We ensure that the commitments embodied in our mission statement for equality permeate the full range of our policies and practices:
Pupils’ progress attainment and assessment;
Behaviour discipline and exclusions;
Pupils’ personal development and pastoral care;
Teaching and learning;
Admissions and attendance;
Teaching and learning;
Staff recruitment and retention;
Governor/staff training and professional development;
Partnerships with parents/carers and communities;
Visits and visitors.