THE NEVILLE LOVETT COMMUNITY SCHOOL
EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES POLICY PRINCIPLES The term “Equal Opportunities” refers to a wide range of issues. In practice, at Neville Lovett we feel that the term implies recognition that discrimination on the basis of colour, culture, origin, sex or ability is unacceptable. The aims of Neville Lovett Community School embrace a caring community, exercising concern and respect for the welfare of others and emphasising the over-riding importance of good human relations, based upon sensitivity, tolerance and goodwill. This policy is set in the context of those aims. The policy is supported by the “Policy Statement of Equal Opportunities in the Curriculum” published by Hampshire County Council (Appendix One). It is intended that this policy will assist the staff at Neville Lovett in delivering a “broad, balanced, differentiated and relevant curriculum”. All members of the institution are responsible for its implementation. The school will attempt to: ensure that all pupils and staff have equality of opportunity in all aspects of school life. allow all members of the community to work towards their full potential in an atmosphere of respect and encouragement. encourage all pupils to play equally active roles in their learning environments. esteem cultural diversity and value the benefits this offers to many aspects of school life. encourage all school leavers to pursue careers which reflect their highest aspirations. take steps to ensure that discrimination is dealt with promptly and constructively. involve parents, governors and, as appropriate, local employers, in recognising equal opportunity issues. ensure that teaching materials do not reinforce stereotypes. The school will also endeavour to support training intended to promote good practice in the area of equal opportunities. PRACTICAL ISSUES Admission of Pupils
The school follows the LEA Admission Policy, which does not permit sex, race, colour (or disability) to be used as criteria for admission. Registration Pupils’ names should be accurately recorded and correctly pronounced. Pupils should be encouraged to accept and respect names from other cultures. Discrimination All forms of discrimination by any person within the school are to be treated seriously. Careful notes of such incidents are kept by the Pastoral teams and, where appropriate, official returns are made. It should always be made clear to offending individuals that such behaviour is unacceptable. Pupils If there are subsequent incidents, then the appropriate senior staff member should be informed and consideration will be given to involving the parents. Home Links Close liaison with families is recognised as being beneficial to all concerned. The school’s pastoral care structure should be used with regard to home/school liaison and for coping with any incident of discrimination or harassment. Resources The school intends to provide for all pupils according to their needs, irrespective of sex, ability or ethnic origins. Whenever possible, staff should ensure that the resources used in all subject areas are multicultural and non-sexist, containing positive images of all groups. Variety should be evident in the morals, stories and information offered to pupils. Pupils should have access to accurate information about similarities and differences between cultural groups. Staff All staff should be aware of possible cultural assumptions and bias within their own attitudes. Employment of Staff Neville Lovett endorses Hampshire County Council’s Equal Opportunity policy which wishes to secure equality of opportunity, whether required by legislation or not, in all aspects of its activities. As an employer Hampshire County Council will take all reasonable and practicable steps to: (a)
Ensure that when employment decisions are made, the only personal characteristics taken into account are those which, as well as being consistent with relevant legislation, are necessary for the requirements and proper performance of the work involved.
Ensure that when an employment decision is made about an individual, the decision is based solely on an assessment of the capability and suitability of that individual, and not on any generalised concepts about the characteristics of categories or groups of persons.
Encourage and assist any disadvantaged groups to achieve a position from which equality of opportunity can operate.
Monitoring It is the responsibility of all senior staff including Heads of Department and Heads of Year, to monitor the effectiveness of equal opportunity within the school. The mechanism for discussion is within the pattern of meetings outlined in the staff handbook. ………………………………………………….. Elizabeth Webb, Chair of Governors
APPENDIX ONE HAMPSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL POLICY STATEMENT OF EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES IN THE CURRICULUM 1. This Statement recognises that all individuals are different and have different needs. It confirms, however, an entitlement to equality of opportunity for all pupils and students irrespective of gender, race or disability. Hampshire County Council is committed to supporting this entitlement. 2. The Council recognises that discrimination, whether open or masked, can lead to inequality of educational opportunities and a failure by schools and colleges to offer the best possible education. The Council believes it is important for pupils, students and for the community to maximise potential and minimise the waste caused by low expectations and under-achievement. 3. Open discrimination in an institution’s organisation, discipline, curricular options and choices, examination entries or careers guidance is illegal under the Sex Discrimination Act 1975 and the Race Relations Act 1976. The Council expects institutions to follow the spirit as well as the letter of the law. 4. Discrimination which is masked within people’s attitudes and assumptions and arises from beliefs and values built up over time is harder to deal with. It may be seen in the behaviour of pupils, students, teachers, parents and other adults towards each other and towards young people: the Education Service has a responsibility to help people identify, address and counter discriminatory attitudes and behaviour through information, education and persuasion. 5. The Council expects all staff in the Education Service, and those who contribute to the Service, as Governors or lay helpers in maintained schools and colleges, to share and develop its commitment to equality of opportunity. By this policy statement the County Council emphasises that pupils and students in Hampshire Schools and Colleges have an entitlement to a full range of educational opportunities in accordance with the requirements of the National Curriculum and the Authority’s own curriculum, policies and guidance.
APPENDIX TWO SOURCES OF INFORMATION AND HELP Equal Opportunities Commission
Department for Education and Skills
Advisory Centre for Education (ACE)
Commission for Racial Equality
Manpower Services Commission