At Sandal Castle Primary, equality is about ensuring that every individual has an equal opportunity to make the most of their lives and talents, and believing that no one should have poorer life chances because of where, what or whom they were born, what they believe, or whether they have a disability. Equality recognises that historically, certain groups of people with particular characteristics e.g. race, disability, sex and sexuality, have experienced discrimination.Much harmful discriminatory behaviour, such as bullying, comes from a lack of understanding for diverse cultures, lifestyles, beliefs and differences between individuals. Educating our children about identities, diversity, equality and human rights helps them learn to respect, celebrate difference and help tackle prejudice and discrimination.
The whole curriculum we provide is underpinned by an awareness and teaching of equality of opportunity for all. The thread that binds the curriculum. An underpinning, not an add on.
Our Equality Duty governors are; Sally Martin and Ben Cowell.
At Sandal Castle Primary we view Inclusion as :
·a sense of belonging
·feeling valued for who you are
·feeling a level of supportive energy and commitment so that we can do our best.
These gifts underpin the inclusive curriculum we offer, linking directly with SMSC, RE, British Values, Christian Values and our commitment to the equality duty objectives
The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the most rapidly and widely ratified international human rights treaty in history.
The Convention changed the way children are viewed and treated – i.e., as human beings with a distinct set of rights instead of as passive objects of care and charity.
The unprecedented acceptance of the Convention clearly shows a wide global commitment to advancing children’s rights.
The Convention has 54 articles that cover all aspects of a child’s life and set out the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights that all children everywhere are entitled to. It also explains how adults and governments must work together to make sure all children can enjoy all their rights.
Every child has rights, whatever their ethnicity, gender, religion, language, abilities or any other status.
The Convention must be seen as a whole: all the rights are linked and no right is more important that another. The right to relax and play (Article 31) and the right to freedom of expression (Article 13) have equal importance as the right to be safe from violence (Article 19) and the right to education (Article 28).
Inclusion Quality Mark Centre of Excellence
Becoming a Centre of Excellence is an opportunity for schools to build on the success of being one of the very special schools which holds the Inclusion Quality Mark award. A Centre of Excellence brings schools together to share and build on their existing good practice in inclusion best practice.Around 240 schools in the UK have met the standard required to become an IQM Centre of Excellence for outstanding levels of inclusion best practice. We have been notified (19th May 2018) that we are now an Inclusion Quality Mark Centre of Excellence.
GW THEATRE COMPANY – MISTER SHAPESHIFTER
We are fortunate to be working with GW Theatre Company again this year. They will visit on the 22nd May to work with year 6 children and staff.
Mister Shapeshifter is a theatre production aimed at Years 6/5: an exciting, very contemporary fairy tale for 9-11 year olds about the ways some adults abuse the trust children put in them and how kids can protect themselves. But it is much more than just a theatre production.
Themes covered in the play: Friendship. Bullying. Safe and unsafe relationships. Trust. Online and smartphone safety and emotional resilience. Critical thinking. That abusers come in all shapes and sizes, forms and roles. They can be in the home, at school, strangers, in agencies supposed to protect children children and that children need to persist in getting help, and to observe the behaviour of adults and not their official position. Children need to trust their own feelings: if it feels wrong, there’s a very good chance that it is. Take charge of your own story, don’t let others make you the unwilling subject of theirs. Help each other
The purpose of Mister Shapeshifter is to entertain, inform, and safeguard children against risk and danger in real life and online and to provide a catalyst for further work by teachers and other adults with the children who see it. It is not meant to stand alone. Preparation before the play and follow up work after is essential. The play can also be used to raise awareness with parents, carers, families and in the wider community.
Mister Shapeshifteris a super villain. He can change his appearance at will. He has one aim in life: to lure children into his ‘Super Story World Studio Workshop’ and steal the childhood out of them so he can live forever. When he lures eleven year old Jess there, only Jack can save her. But Jack is one of Mister Shapeshifter’s previous victims, and as a result is bullied, lonely and angry. To save Jess, Jack has first to save himself and then bring The Shapeshifter to justice, with the help of Jess, the audience, his teacher and the police.
Inclusion Quality Mark and Inclusion Centre of Excellence Accreditation 18th/19th April 2018
Our aim is to celebrate the inclusive culture of our school by achieving the Inclusion Quality Mark this academic year. The Inclusion Quality Mark provides schools with a nationally recognised framework to guide their inclusion journey. The IQM team will help us to evaluate and measure how we are performing.
Inclusion promotes equal opportunities for all pupils, whatever their age, gender, ethnicity, attainment and background. It pays particular attention to the provision made for, and the achievement of, different groups of pupils within a school and any pupils who are at risk of disaffection and exclusion. Our evidence was submitted in February 2018 and our 2 day assessment will take place on the 18th and 19th April.
On the 10th May we received notification that we have succeeded in achieving the Inclusion Quality Mark and are being recommended to be a Centre of Excellence. We are delighted that our work with children, families and community has been recognised in such a positive report. Here are a few extracts from the 20 page report;
''Sandal Castle VA Community Primary School is a remarkable and highly inclusive
school. Every adult sounded a passionate and determined attitude to supporting the
children of the school. The school community faces many challenges and yet the school
is one that supports, welcomes and helps every child to progress.''
''The ethos of inclusion and tolerance is reflected in the development of a culture that
values and celebrates diversity.''
''The school ethos is reflected in the behaviour of children in lessons throughout the
institution. Children were observed to be purposefully engaged, yet with an
appropriate level of informality that enhanced learning''
''Relationships within the school were observed to be excellent. In addition, pupils,
teachers, governors and teaching assistants all spoke very positively about the school,
their role in it, and feeling valued. ''
''Parents spoke of the school being very approachable, with numerous opportunities for
communication about children’s progress and an open door to senior leaders available.
The school leadership and governors saw support for parents being an essential part of
the role of the school. It was clear that there is much trust between the parents and the
school and this trust has been built up over many years with dedication and clarity of
''It has been a privilege to meet the pupils and staff of Sandal Castle VA Community Primary School and hear from them how they value what they do in their school and care for the other members of the school. On the basis of what I have observed, discussed and read I can confirm that Sandal Castle VA Community Primary School meets the criteria demanded to be awarded the Inclusion Quality Mark. I would also strongly recommend that the school become a Centre of Excellence for Inclusion.''
Mr Carter attended a Stonewall Conference in March, ' Creating a trans inclusive school'. Mr Carter is now our accredited Stonewall School Champion.
We have completed our school Trans Invisibility audit. The outcomes have been discussed with staff and governors and link directly with our pupil voice action plan. A CPD event took place on the 18th April 2018 for staff and governors.
Eastern European Engagement Event - February 2018
The fantastic work of the school has been recognised by the council;
‘As part of the Community Consultation with Eastern European residents of Wakefield, Sandal Castle VA Community Primary School have been working in Partnership with the Community Cohesion team in the Council, to carry our key engagement activities with Eastern European families from the school. The Council and its partners would like to thank Sandal Castle VA Community Primary school, its staff and parents who all took the time out to take part in this vital engagement project. It has been a very positive experience to work with the school and we hope to continue strengthening our working relationship and improving our services for the local community’.
Community Cohesion Liaison Officer
Working with the LA VI Team
Our children had the fantastic opportunity to work with the LA VI Team in raising awareness and recognition of the challenges and support we can provide for children and adults who may be visually impaired.
Our school is committed and determined to ensure our children receive a breadth of curriculum opportunity to support them in developing and nurturing strong values. A range of texts and pertinent picture books are used to initiate discussion, debate, inspire questions and a deep level of thinking and understanding. For example;
Being Me in Penguin Land – An early years gender book
Salt in his Shoes
The mention of the name Michael Jordan, conjures up visions of
basketball played at its absolute best. But as a child, Michael almost gave up
on his hoop dreams, all because he feared he'd never grow tall enough to play
the game that would one day make him famous. That's when his mother and father
stepped in and shared the invaluable lesson of what really goes into the making
of a champion -- patience, determination, and hard work.
Deloris Jordan, mother of the basketball phenomenon, teams up with his sister Roslyn to tell this heartwarming and inspirational story that only the members of the Jordan family could tell. It's a tale about faith and hope and how any family working together can help a child make his or her dreams come true.
The Hundred Dresses
Eleanor Estes's The Hundred Dresses won a Newbery Honor in 1945 and
has never been out of print since. At the heart of the story is Wanda
Petronski, a Polish girl in a Connecticut school who is ridiculed by her
classmates for wearing the same faded blue dress every day. Wanda claims she
has one hundred dresses at home, but everyone knows she doesn't and bullies her
mercilessly. The class feels terrible when Wanda is pulled out of the school,
but by that time it's too late for apologies. Maddie, one of Wanda's
classmates, ultimately decides that she is "never going to stand by and
say nothing again."
An inspiring portrait of one of the world's most loved
There was once a boy named Henri, whose dreams were full of colour even though his hometown was dreary and grey. His parents expected him to learn a trade when he grew up, but being a law clerk bored him, and he continued to dream of a colourful, exciting life, and of being noticed. Then Henri started painting . . . and kept painting and dreaming and working at his craft until he'd become one of the most admired and famous artists in the world. This book is an encouragement to never give up on your dreams.
Until Chrysanthemum started school, she believed her parents when they said her name was perfect. But on the first day of school, Chrysanthemum begins to suspect that her name is far from perfect, especially when her class dissolves into giggles upon hearing her name read aloud. That evening, Chrysanthemum's parents try to piece her self-esteem back together again.But the next day Victoria, a particularly observant and mean-spirited classmate, announces that Chrysanthemum's name takes up 13 letters. "That's half the letters in the alphabet!" she adds. Chrysanthemum wilts. Pretty soon the girls are making playground threats to "pluck" Chrysanthemum and "smell her". Kevin Henkes displays great compassion for the victims of childhood teasing and cruelties, skilfully employing fresh language, endearing pen-and-ink mouse characters and realistic dialogue to portray real-life vulnerability. He also has great compassion for parents.
A girl on The Secret Life of 5 Year Olds has impressed the internet with her empowering comments about feminism and women’s rights. Eva, who appears in the Channel 4 fly-on-the-wall documentary, schooled others on women’s right to vote and gender equality.
In the programme, Eva and Jude were asked why girls can’t be scientists.
When Jude replied that it’s because they “make silly potions”, Eva responded: “I extracted the DNA from a banana once.”
Eva also noted the importance of voting. When asked what’s important for girls when they grow up, she responded: “They go to work and vote, definitely.
“Girls used to not vote and there were these girls who fought to vote but they got killed. It’s very important for girls to vote otherwise that will happen again.”
On 6th April 2012, schools were required to publish information showing how they comply with the new equality duty and setting equality objectives. Schools are required to update the published information at least annually and publish objectives at least once every four years.
Compliance with the equality duty is a legal requirement for schools. The equality duty helps schools to focus on key issues of concern and how to improve pupil outcomes.
The equality duty has two main parts: the ‘general’ equality duty and ‘specific duties’.
The general equality duty sets out the equality matters that schools need to consider when making decisions that affect pupils or staff with different protected characteristics. This duty has three elements. In carrying out their functions public bodies are required to have ‘due regard’ when making decisions and developing policies, with the aim to:
- 1.Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
- 2.Foster good relations across all protected characteristics – between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
- 3.Eliminate discrimination, harassment, victimisation and other conduct that is prohibited by the Equality Act 2010.
These are often referred to as the three aims of the general duty equality duty.
Having due regard to the need to advance equality of opportunity is defined further in the Equality Act 2010 as having due regard to the need to:
- 1.Remove or minimise disadvantages
- 2.Take steps to meet different needs
- 3.Encourage participation when it is disproportionately low.
In order to help schools in England meet the general equality duty, there are two specific duties that they are required to carry out. These are:
- •To publish information to demonstrate how they are complying with the equality duty.
- •To prepare and publish one or more specific and measurable equality objectives.
The equality duty supports good education and improves pupil outcomes. It helps a school to identify priorities. It does this by requiring it to collate evidence, take a look at any issues and consider taking action to improve the experience of different groups of pupils. It then helps the school to focus on what can be done to tackle these issues and to improve outcomes by developing measurable equality objectives.
Our policy document meets the requirements under the following legislation:
- The Equality Act 2010, which introduced the public sector equality duty and protects people from discrimination
- The Equality Act 2010 (Specific Duties) Regulations 2011, which require schools to publish information to demonstrate how they are complying with the public sector equality duty and to publish equality objectives
- Our policy document is also based on Department for Education (DfE) guidance: The Equality Act 2010 and schools.
Our school is aware of its obligations under the Equality Act 2010 and complies with non-discrimination provisions.
Where relevant, our policies include reference to the importance of avoiding discrimination and other prohibited conduct.
Staff and governors are regularly reminded of their responsibilities under the Equality Act.
We have a designated member of staff for monitoring equality issues, and an equality link governor. They regularly liaise regarding any issues and make senior leaders and governors aware of these as appropriate.
As set out in the DfE guidance on the Equality Act, the school aims to advance equality of opportunity by:
- Removing or minimising disadvantages suffered by people which are connected to a particular characteristic they have
- Taking steps to meet the particular needs of people who have a particular characteristic
- Encouraging people who have a particular characteristic to participate fully in any activities (e.g. encouraging all pupils to be involved in the full range of school opportunities)
In fulfilling this aspect of the duty, our school will:
- analyse attainment data each academic year showing how pupils with different characteristics are performing to determine strengths and areas for improvement, implementing actions in response
- identify improvements for specific groups
- discuss further data about any issues associated with particular protected characteristics, identifying any issues which could affect our own pupils
The school aims to foster good relations between those who share a protected characteristic and those who do not share it by:
- Promoting tolerance, friendship and understanding of a range of religions and cultures through different aspects of our curriculum. This includes teaching in RE, citizenship and personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education, but also activities in other curriculum areas. For example, as part of teaching and learning in English/reading, pupils will be introduced to literature from a range of cultures, Black History month focus with a continuation throughout the year across all curriculum areas, P4C Big Questions
- Holding assemblies dealing with relevant issues. Children are encouraged to take a lead in such assemblies and we also invite external speakers to contribute
- Working with our local community. This includes inviting leaders of local faith groups to speak at assemblies, and organising school trips and activities based around the local community
- Encouraging and implementing initiatives to encourage inclusivity and participation within the school.
- We have developed links with people and groups who have specialist knowledge about particular characteristics, which helps inform and develop our approach
Stonewall - Acceptance without exception
Resources to tackle homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in education environments and help create more inclusive spaces
This is a fantastic TV show on CBBC made by and particularly enjoyed by children with Autism. Pablo uses his magic crayons to turn his life challenges into wonderful adventures and his feelings into colourful characters with a voice - in the art of his imagination, just about anything can happen! Why not have a look?
Celebrating Black History
Black History Month found its way to the UK in 1987 following its successful implementation in the USA and Canada. Its role was to celebrate and inform the public about all aspects of black history and culture. In the early days, primary schools usually marked the event through a series of assemblies focusing on some significant black individuals like Mary Seacole.
Since then, a great deal of work has been done to educate and support teachers in looking at black history, not just as something to be celebrated in one month but throughout the year. The inspirational work of Hilary Clare and pioneering groups like the Northamptonshire Black History Association led to the introduction of enlightened schemes of work written on such topics as black migration and on significant figures like the black professional footballer Walter Tull. Our view is that although we celebrate Black History Month, it is far more important to have black history threaded throughout the topics we teach rather than a tokenistic annual event.
- Mylearning.org has a specific area with resources related to Black History
- Britishlegion.org/community/stories section provides ideas for remembering the contribution of all soldiers in past and present conflicts
Please click on the link to view the Diocesan celebration of our school success'
We celebrate the many languages spoken within our school. Miss Hawkins is our EAL leader ably supported by Mrs Fiaz and Mrs Main in delivering a language rich and vibrant curriculum to enhance and accelerate language acquisition and understanding.
Anti-Bullying Week (ABW) is an annual event coordinated by the Anti-Bullying Alliance that shines a spotlight on bullying and encourages all children, parents and teachers to take action against bullying throughout the year. This year’s ABW runs from the 13-17 November with the theme ‘All Different, All Equal’.
Power of One - 13th November
To launch our Anti Bullying week, we enjoyed a fantastic performance of the Power of One.The Power of One has an important message that resonates well with everyone; we all have the power to stop bullying and not be a bystander. To demonstrate our support for the message, the whole school community have signed the anti bullying pledge which is on display in the main reception.
We were happy to host the launch of the Toot Toot programme for all Wakefield schools.
Toot Toot gives a voice for all children/pupils/students; a safe voice to be able to report incidents of bullying, cyber bullying, racism, extremism, radicalisation, sexism, mental health and self harm directly to their place of learning. Tootoot gives students an alternative way to disclose their concerns when they are unable to do so face-to-face.
Online Safety: Our Children Need You!
Children are using technology and exploring the online world from a younger age. Thinkuknow are developing a new resource to help build young children's resilience online and give them the skills to explore all the digital world has to offer safely.
Thinkuknow need a comprehensive picture of the online behaviour of 4-7 year olds and hope you can help us by completing the Parents/Carers survey.
Complete the Survey here; https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/parentscarers4-7s