School Diversity Week
This week schools work on celebrating LGBT+ & Equality and Inclusion from 21st - 25th June. Last week I posted on Autism and Inclusion discussing why we need to celebrate our differences. But when the week is over, things return to normal, and only when the nation has campaigns do we remember to celebrate or create changes for excluded people. This is the same for Black History Month, a time when there is a possibility for black professionals to be invited into schools to give talks, and for our history to be shared in lessons. Things have improved recently with some schools taking time to collaborate with black-led organisations. The celebrations include the start of mandatory black history as The Black Curriculum since June 2020 campaigned for this to be actioned, and have trained over 3,300 teachers and 3,500 students reached to date. But why is inclusion failing?
As mentioned in last week's post, we need to change our use of language with words like "normal" therefore referring to those who do not fit inside this as the types to be excluded. When will we understand the true meaning of diversity, that we are not all created the same? Whether the differences are our cultures, ethnicities, race, and religion, or gender, sexuality each category demands equality and fairness. The Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities, CRED Report 2021 concluded that Britain doesn't have a systematic problem with racism, and that closure is why inclusion will be a fight-or-flight matter. The summary of recommendations from the report suggests ideas to achieve inclusivity. Recommendation 20 of the CRED Report encourages making a modern Britain teaching an inclusive curriculum where independent experts tell the stories of contributions made by different groups.
We hope these papers are not collecting dust or in the virtual archives and the recommendations aren't simply paying lip service to the work to progress equality and inclusion.