Equality Duty Statement
What is the PSED?
The Equality Act 2010 introduced a single, general duty for public bodies, including schools, and which extends to all ‘protected characteristics’ – race, disability, sex, age, religion or belief, sexual orientation, pregnancy and maternity and gender reassignment.
There are three main elements within the act and in carrying out our functions, as a school, we must have regard for the need to:
- 1. Eliminate discrimination and other conduct prohibited by the act.
- 2. Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
- 3. Foster good relations across all characteristics – between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
It should be noted that age is a relevant characteristic for schools when considering their duties as an employer but not in relation to pupils. The PSED replaces the previous three sets of separate duties to promote disability, race and gender equality. All schools must have ‘due regard’ to the three elements. Therefore whenever significant decisions are being made, or policies being developed or reviewed, the school will consider carefully the equalities implications.
How does St Peter & St Paul Church of England Primary School comply with the PSED?
The school has a range of policies which make explicit the school’s long established commitment to actively promoting equality of opportunity for all. The main policies dealing with equality of opportunity are:
There is little variance in attainment and progress between groups; Male and Female, Children with Special Educational Needs, Gifted and Talented, Black and Minority Ethnic groups, speakers of English as an Additional Language (EAL) and Children eligible for the Pupil Premium. The performance outcomes for children in these groups demonstrate the inclusivity of the school.
However, the school is far from complacent and remains focused upon ensuring that its response to the PSED is significant and effective in each of the three main elements.
1. Eliminate discrimination
The school serves an area of social advantage with a small proportion of pupils coming from less privileged backgrounds. We have a very low percentage of FSM children (7% versus 19.2% nationally).
Our percentage of children from ethnic minorities is also lower than the national average (3% v 26.5%), as is our percentage of children with English as an additional language (1% v 16.8%.) Children with Special Educational Needs and or Disabilities is more in line with national statistics (11% v 11.3%).
Close tracking of all pupil outcomes takes place in a structured, systematic way and the school intervenes where it reveals underachievement, low attainment or concerns about specific groups or individuals.
Monitoring and evaluation, and the analysis of data, takes place across the school and is used within the improvement cycle at each Key Stage. Assessment data leads to judgments for key areas of improvement and development.
2. Advance equality of opportunity
The school is committed to advancing equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it, and has put a range of approaches in place to ensure that this happens.
The school monitors and evaluates, frequently and regularly, the attainment and progress of all pupils and looks at the performance of particular groups who share a protected characteristic to compare their performance with those who do not share it. Interventions are then planned and implemented in order to close any disparities in performance.
Examples of practice which advances equality of opportunity:
Where necessary, we use the services of outside agencies to support families and individual pupils. Pupils with SEND, including those with medical needs, are fully supported by our SENDCo and external specialist professionals.
We have excellent links with local nurseries and the local high school, which ensures that transition into Reception and Year 7 runs smoothly.
We use the services of the Suffolk Safeguarding Team and Child Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) for pupils who need this type of expert support.
Our Accessibility plan and School Single Equalities policy are reviewed every two years to ensure that they include the relevant and up to date information. Our More Able, Gifted and Talented pupils are effectively identified and their learning is provided for, not only in routine differentiation but specifically according to individual need. We select individuals for courses, duties and involvement in appropriate activities that will use and extend their abilities, gifts and talents.
3. Foster good relations across all characteristics
Draft Public Sector Equality Duty Statement – October 2019 3 The school adopts a wide range of approaches to foster good relations across all characteristics. Some specific examples are as follows:
The school participates in fund raising for many charities supporting local, national and global issues, which are understood and supported by children.
The strong global dimension of our curriculum develops our pupils’ awareness of different countries and cultures.
We are a Christian school with strong links with St Peter & St Paul Church and regularly have the Church Rector and other people of faith visit us to lead our whole school assemblies.
All governors demonstrate a high level of engagement with the school in areas such as health and safety, Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural development, SEND and equality. They concern themselves with the inclusive nature of our school, the well-being of staff and pupils and with attendance and behaviour.
Our partnership with local schools is an integral part of our school provision. Through this partnership our children have access to a range of activities and competitions that span the curriculum. They are able to interact with pupils from other schools, visit other schools and bring the impact of this, back into their own classrooms.
We are very proud of our extended services offered in the form of a wide variety of teacher run clubs which are outside of the school day and a proportion are free of charge. The impact of this is that children experience enrichments to the basic curriculum. These clubs are popular and very well attended.
Our Equality Objectives
Under the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) the school is required to set Equality Objectives. Our published information must be updated annually and objectives published at least once every four years.
Objective 1: To narrow the gap between the progress made by ‘all’ children and that made by ‘groups’ of children such as those eligible for the Pupil Premium.
Objective 2: To ensure that future reviews of all school policies include information about, and links to, PSED. In order to eliminate discrimination all school policies will be reviewed and revised to ensure that where relevant the importance of avoiding discrimination, victimisation or harassment is expressly noted.
Objective 3: To ensure that staff induction includes raising awareness of, and staff understanding their responsibilities under, the Equality Act.
Objective 4: To further develop the SMSC aspects of school life