Community Cohesion Policy
1.1 We recognise the important role our school plays in the promotion of community cohesion. This school will strive to promote all aspects of community cohesion as we want our children to grow up in a society that celebrates diversity, all the different ethnic, religious and social groups that exist in our local area and is at ease with itself.
1.2 Our statutory duties are based on the following legislation:
The Race Relations Act 1976;
The Race Relations Amendment Act 2000;
The Disability Discrimination Acts 1995 and 2005;
The Sex Discrimination Act 1975, as amended by the Equality Act 2006;
The Education and Inspections Act 2006;
that they reflect international human rights standards as expressed in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities, and the Human Rights Act 1998.
2 Aims and objectives
2.1 We aim to educate our pupils so that they understand how our national and local society is made up of diverse groups. We will cultivate an attitude of respect and understanding for all cultures reflected in our local area. We will celebrate diversity so that pupils learn how cultural differences enhance all our lives. We aim to help pupils understand what makes a cohesive community and how this is important in enabling people to enjoy living in this area.
2.2 This policy needs to be considered alongside our Equal Opportunities policy which sets out our commitment to eliminating all forms of prejudice and discrimination. In promoting the respect for all members of our society we believe we will make an important contribution to the promotion of community cohesion.
3 What we mean by community cohesion
3.1 We understand community cohesion to mean a society in which there is a shared vision of how different groups can live in peace and harmony. It is an area where all members of society have a sense of belonging and where the diversity of people’s backgrounds and culture is valued. It is a community where there is an equality of life opportunities available to all groups and individuals regardless of race, religion, ethnic or socio-economic background. It is built on a community that respects and values cultural groups that are different to their own and where strong and positive relationships exist in school and in the wider community.
4 The curriculum
Our curriculum will provide opportunities to promote the values of equal opportunities and respect for all. It will build upon pupils’ understanding of the diversity that surrounds them, recognising similarities and appreciating different cultures, faiths, ethnicities and socio-economic backgrounds. Opportunities for discussing issues of identity and diversity will be integrated across the curriculum.
We will ensure that teaching will help pupils to challenge prejudice and stereotyping – for example, the opportunities in citizenship classes for pupils to discuss issues of identity and diversity and what it means ‘to live together in the UK’. We will have a programme of cultural visits and opportunities to meet members of different communities. We will provide additional support for pupils for whom English is an additional language (EAL) to enable them to achieve at the highest possible standards in literacy as soon as they can. Our school will maximise opportunities for pupils to express their opinions and we will involve them as fully as possible in the governance and organisation of the school and in the way they can participate in the community and make a difference in school beyond the school gate.
5 Teaching and learning
5.1 Through all our teaching we will show respect for individual views and opinions. Our school is a place where pupils from all backgrounds and cultures will be welcomed and valued. We will promote an ethos where diversity is respected. In all our work we will encourage positive relationships between staff and our pupils and we shall provide opportunities for staff to listen and respond to the views of all our pupils.
5.2 We will do all we can to provide targeted additional support to those pupils who need it. For example, pupils who have English as an additional language (EAL) will be provided with extra support to assist them in developing their English language skills as quickly as possible.
5.3 For pupils who are falling behind or at risk of falling behind we will provide individual one-to-one tuition as long as we have sufficient additional funding to support this.
5.4 Teachers and support staff will strive to develop strong links with all parents and carers whatever their cultural background.
6 Educational Partnerships
6.1 We will promote community cohesion by developing in our pupils an understanding of our local area in a national and international context. We will build partnerships with schools that have a different ethnic and social mix to our own to try and promote an understanding of the diverse society found in this country. We will also build international links with schools in other parts of the world. This may involve making good use of modern technology but also opportunities for staff and pupils to visit other countries and host visitors from abroad.
6.2 We will encourage partnerships with a wide range of groups that can help us to develop an understanding of different cultures and backgrounds. We will build our links with local faith groups and provide opportunities to visit sacred sites in the area. We will invite members of different groups to visit our school and help our pupils appreciate the variety of cultures found in our area.
7 Staff recruitment and continuing development
7.1 We will pay particular attention to the recruitment of staff to the school to try and reflect in our staff the social make-up of our area. We will ensure that our school recruitment methods follow the equal opportunities guidelines and we will encourage applications from groups that are under represented at the moment.
7.2 We will ensure that all staff (including non-teaching staff) have professional development opportunities related to community cohesion and equalities issues so that we continue to have a school ethos where all members of the school community are valued and respected.
8 The Leadership and management of community cohesion
8.1 The leadership and management our work on community cohesion will be a responsibility of the headteacher or deputy headteacher. They will ensure that it remains an issue that underpins all our work in the school. They will have the specific responsibility to coordinate the specific activities carried out to promote community cohesion and ensure that this is reflected in all school planning.
8.2 The school will promote community cohesion by gathering and analysing all available data to inform our actions. This will include the monitoring of attainment by different ethnic groups and analysis of our curriculum to evaluate how our teaching and learning properly reflects the different culture represented in our school and local area. We will plan actions to promote community cohesion. This may involve particular events such as a world music or food day or it may involve a review of school policies on such matters as staff recruitment. We will also carefully monitor the impact of our work in promoting community cohesion.
9 Monitoring and review
9.1 Our progress in promoting community cohesion will be reported to governors annually and more frequently is necessary. We will review the impact of our work on all groups in the school. We will particularly analyse how different cultural groups perform and if there are any gaps in attainment we will address them as rigorously as possible.
9.2 We will continue to monitor the impact of our work through the review of a number of important indicators. These will include the number of incidents of poor behaviour that are racially or culturally motivated. We will monitor the number of instances of racial or cultural tension involving our pupils.
9.3 We will work with parents and community leaders to strive to improve the effectiveness of our work. We will do all we can to have strong and effective channels of communication with all sections of our community in an attempt to listen to any concerns that may arise and better serve the needs of all stakeholders.
9.4 The policy will be monitored on an annual basis through the headteacher’s report to governors.
REVIEW DATE SEPTEMBER 2017