LITTLE HILL PRIMARY SCHOOL, WIGSTON EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES POLICY

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1 1. RATIONALE LITTLE HILL PRIMARY SCHOOL, WIGSTON EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES POLICY 2. AIMS Equal Opportunities in education is about ensuring that all pupils have the chance to fulfil their potential regardless of sex, racial group, social background, physical disability, intellectual ability and any other general characteristic. It is about preparing all pupils to participate in and contribute to society, achieve financial independence, form worthwhile relationships and care adequately for themselves and others. Equality of opportunity is not only relevant to pupils. It is just as important for all staff in schools. The aims of Little Hill Primary School are that: i. all pupils, irrespective of gender, ability (including disability and giftedness), ethnicity and social circumstances, have access to the curriculum and all school activities and should make the greatest progress possible in order to achieve their full potential; the school meets the requirements of the Sex Discrimination Act (1975) and the Race Relations Act (1976) and the Disability Discrimination Act (1995); the school supports the Leicestershire Curriculum Statement on Equal Opportunities for all learners. The implementation of this policy is the responsibility of the Governors and all staff. 3. STAFFING Little Hill Primary School recognises that Equal Opportunities are also important for staff and has an Equal Opportunities Policy for Employees (see Appendix A). 4. ACCESS i. Admissions All children are welcome at Little Hill Primary School regardless of gender, ability, race, creed, disposition, social, cultural or linguistic background. Special Educational Needs Little Hill Primary School provides Equal Opportunities for children with Special Educational Needs (see Special Needs Policy). The school environment enables children with disabilities to take advantage of the educational opportunities available for all of the children by: a. ensuring that where possible children with disabilities are provided with equipment and facilities to enable them to take as full a part as possible in the school curriculum; - 1 -

2 b. providing a safe environment for children with disabilities. Ramps and handrails are provided to enable easy access to the school building. Children with English as a Second Language Access to the curriculum for children whose mother tongue is not English may need to be facilitated by bi-lingual support and English language support from the Section XI Service. If appropriate, the Headteacher monitors the needs and progress of such children. 5. ATTITUDES AND EXPECTATIONS i. Little Hill Primary School expects positive behaviour and attitudes from all its pupils and staff: a. tolerance as opposed to any form of discrimination, e.g. racism, sexism or intolerance towards people with disabilities; b. respect for and understanding of people from other cultures. As part of the children s personal and social education we encourage them to develop: a. positive attitudes towards other children and the wider community; b. a positive sense of self worth. High expectations of work and behaviour by all school staff will enable children to achieve their full potential regardless of race, gender, social circumstances and ability. 6. CURRICULUM CONTENT i. The Curriculum Subject content and presentation, teacher attitudes and pupil perceptions all affect what pupils learn within the formal curriculum and can make the learning experience more attractive or more relevant to boys than girls, or to girls then boys. At Little Hill Primary School we think it is important to: encourage and support girls/boys in developing positive perceptions of non-traditional curriculum areas; present curriculum activities in ways which are relevant and interesting to both girls and boys; for example - the use of examples in classroom discussion which refer to experiences both girls and boys can identify with whilst not reinforcing stereotypes; develop strategies to improve the achievement of girls/boys in particular curriculum areas as data suggests the need; ensure teaching methods encourage both girls and boys to participate equally in the full range of planned learning activities; have equally high expectations of both girls and boys; use a range of assessment methods and different types of questions in tests and assessments

3 Resources and Display It is important to ensure: the balanced allocation of teacher time between boys and girls; spending on resources is not focused on curriculum areas or interests which are traditionally regarded as either more male or more female ; the content of books does not reinforce gender stereotypes; the content of class text books appeals to both girls and boys; displays celebrate the achievements of both girls and boys; the contents of displays is of interest to all pupils and does not reinforce stereotypes. All subject leaders should cater for all groups of children when selecting and purchasing resources. The Organisation of Learning The way in which pupils are grouped, subjects timetabled and support allocated can all have implications for equal opportunities. It is important to consider: the effects on learning of single or mixed gender groupings in the classroom; the effects ability groupings may have on the gender balance within classes and therefore the range of learning strategies which can be employed; the reasons why more boys than girls are considered to have Special Educational Needs. iv. Ethos, Behaviour and Relationships The organisation and administration of the school shapes and influences the whole school ethos. The nature and quality of the relationships within the school can have a significant impact on equal opportunities. It is important that: girls and boys are equally likely to be praised, rewarded or reprimanded and this should be done in the same way regardless of gender; equal time should be given to the success of girls and boys in sport and other areas; extra curricular activities and clubs cover a variety of interests; the standards of behaviour expected from girls should be the same as it is for boys; incidents of sexual harassment will be taken seriously and dealt with through an established procedure and in a manner that supports the person who has been harassed (see the LA policy on Sexual Harassment)

4 v. Key Issues Our key concern is to assess the influence of the school s practice and policies on pupils access to the curriculum and their achievements. We shall regularly monitor (with a view to actively promoting equality of opportunity): the relative performance of girls and boys in Standardised Tests, National Curriculum Assessments (SATs) and Teacher Assessments; the extent to which the School Policy on Equal Opportunities informs the School Development Plan and is reflected in other documentation; the distribution of girls and boys in class groups and ability sets within the classroom; curricular opportunities including extra curricular ones; the distribution of authority amongst staff and the role models presented to pupils; the extent to which resources, displays and accommodation support the interests and motivation of all pupils; teachers ability to establish appropriate working groups of pupils, avoid stereotyping, recognise and respond to difficulties and convey expectations of achievement; the extent to which equal demands are made on girls and boys in contributing, for example, to discussions and questions; the extent to which the content, structure and processes of the curriculum promote genuine access for all pupils; the extent to which the ethos of the school promotes access and achievement of all pupils; the extent to which staff organise girls and boys to work and play co-operatively together when appropriate. 7. INFORMATION GATHERING AND RECORD KEEPING i. On admission parents are invited to provide information relating to each child s ethnic group, religion and languages spoken. The purposes of information gathering are so that staff can: a. be aware of the diversity of children in their class and respect their cultural backgrounds; b. use the information to have a positive impact on classroom planning; c. draw on children s knowledge and experience in the learning process; d. acknowledge children s competence in different languages and dialects as appropriate; e. respond to the needs of parents by being sensitive to their cultural and religious identities; f. provide information for relevant secondary schools for Year 5 children; g. provide information for the LEA s monitoring procedures

5 8. HOME/SCHOOL LINKS i. Little Hill Primary School values links with parents and members of the local community and the contributions which they can offer to school life. If the need arises the school would actively support the needs of any parent who had difficulty in understanding communications from the school. Parents of children with Special Educational Needs will be kept informed of their progress in accordance with the Special Educational Needs Policy. 9. THE ROLE OF SUPPORT STAFF i. All Support Staff are expected to implement School Policies as directed by the Headteacher or members of the teaching staff and to maintain the school ethos. Support Teachers and teaching assistants work in close consultation with Class Teachers to ensure that children have appropriate access to the curriculum. Support Teachers attend Key Stage Meetings, Staff Meetings and School INSET Days when appropriate. 10. REVIEW This policy was reviewed in January 2010 and will be reviewed again in January

6 APPENDIX A EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES POLICY FOR EMPLOYEES STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES The Headteacher and Governors of Little Hill Primary School support all personnel in their professional duties and will provide professional guidance and support when appropriate. The Headteacher and Governors aim to provide a pleasant and safe working environment for all employees. All employees will have access to training or professional development programmes. All employees will have access to a complaints/grievance procedure if they are unhappy about any aspects of their working conditions. Recruitment Procedures: The Governors will act as fair employers. All jobs will be advertised and will be open to fair competition from applicants. Procedures comply with all relevant legislation, particularly safer recruitment (as per the Safeguarding/Child Protection Policy). Fair shortlisting and interviewing procedures will take place for all jobs based upon appropriate criteria which has been agreed by the Governor s Staffing Committee. Unsuccessful applicants/candidates will be offered feedback

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