Aims of Bowdon Church School
We are a welcoming community where each adult and child is valued and respected. We provide the opportunity for all members to achieve their full potential in a caring and secure Christian atmosphere.
As a Church School, we place a strong emphasis on creating and sustaining an ethos based on Christian principles. Care, understanding and respect for each other underpin everything we do and we aim to nurture and develop positive spiritual, moral, social and cultural attitudes within our school community.
Religious education and collective worship are central to the life of our school, whilst reflecting the rich variety of religious traditions and diversity of our community. We actively seek to provide a supportive environment for all families, recognising and welcoming diversity.
Our Equality Objectives (reviewed 2022)
- Ensure that all pupils can access our curriculum
- Advance equality of opportunity by ensuring that teaching, learning and the curriculum promote equality and community cohesion, and recognise and promote diversity
- Address and eliminate prejudice, discrimination, harassment or victimisation and ensure that no one is unfairly disadvantaged Show respect for, and appreciation of, each person as an individual who has been created unique and special by God
- Encourage a questioning and reflective approach to life
- Promote British values within the curriculum: democracy; the rule of law; individual liberty; mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.
- Challenge opinions or behaviours in school that are contrary to British values and be courageous advocates, actively challenging prejudice, discrimination and wrongdoing
Equality in School
- The school will help pupils explore the issues of gender, race, culture and disability through assemblies, PSHE and embedded in teaching across the curriculum.
- Pupils/staff will be made aware that any form of harassment or abuse is unacceptable. This will be examined through the Behaviour and Bullying Policies.
- Pupils, parents and staff are able to express their concerns and know that they will be listened to by staff, Senior Leadership Team and the Governing Body.
- As a staff, we regularly review our curriculum to ensure the content does not include avoid stereotyping and unconscious bias. The school seeks to provide pupils with a diverse range of positive role models who challenge negative stereotyping and therefore ensure that equal opportunities permeate the life and work of the school. (For example, women in science and engineering roles; BAME members of the armed forces in WW1 and WW2)
- The rebuilding of Bowdon Church School was completed in September 2015. The new building has been designed to be accessible for all. We have easy access into all areas of the building, a lift to and from the upper floor and two hygiene rooms (one on each floor) both containing a seated shower. Any specific accessibility arrangements are accommodated if possible and practicable.
Teaching and Learning
- Regardless of gender, ethnicity, culture or disability, BCS children have equal opportunity within and equal access to all areas of the whole school curriculum.
- Monitoring of attainment across the curriculum by class teachers and SLT examines differences by gender, ethnicity, age and social information. Reports of findings are made known to staff and governors in pupil progress meetings and governance committee meetings.
- We celebrate the fact that some of our children speak more than one language. We carefully monitor and track the progress of pupils with English as an Additional Language (EAL) to ensure that their access to the curriculum is unimpeded, whilst recognising recognise that they may require additional support to acquire the same competence in English as in their home language(s).
- Efforts are made to recognise gender or race issues in both our teaching and learning materials and our teaching styles and to engage in frank discussions regarding these issues with the children (at an age-appropriate level).
- Materials and resources are carefully selected for all areas of the curriculum so as to avoid stereotypes
- Teaching time, attention and all resources are given equally to all children.
- Boys and girls are encouraged to participate equally in the full range of activities both inside and outside the classroom.
- All children are encouraged to work and play freely with others.
- Equality between all pupils is recognised when giving/delegating responsibilities and noting achievements.
- Discipline procedures, notably rewards and sanctions, are the same for all pupils.
- Teaching and other groupings e.g. dinner queues, assembly seating, lines for dismissal, classroom seating and playground areas are organised on the basis of criteria other than gender, religion or ethnicity – for example, age (year group), ability, friendship.
- School uniform and sports kits are not gender-specific. Other rules regarding appearance (eg. hair) apply to both boys and girls.
- Staff appointments and promotions are made under equal opportunity guidelines that have been agreed by the Governing Body.
- In all appointments, the best candidate will be appointed based on strict professional criteria.
- Equality between staff is recognised when giving/delegating responsibilities and noting achievements.
- All staff have the opportunity, in line with the School Development Plan and the School Budget Plan, to take part in appropriate training to enable them to reach their full potential.
- As a school, we work to incorporate the Trafford LEA’s guidelines for Equal Opportunity into our practice.
Specific focus on equality in school
Diversity will be a focus of our parent forum and included in this exercise will be reviews of school policies and discussions on curriculum and pedagogical issues, with the aim of ensuring that our provision is as inclusive as it can possibly be and that all unconscious bias is eliminated.
Our Behaviour Policy is under review, to ensure that it reflects our goal of being a zero-tolerance school with regard to racism, prejudice and discrimination of any kind.
We engaged in whole-staff training on inclusion in January 2022 (which will be followed up in March 2022), and addressing racism will be an ongoing focus, through class discussions, widening the range of literature our children are exposed to, and through events such as World Book Day and Give Racism the Red Card.
A parents' WhatsApp group was set up to provide support and discussion for parents with children who have SEND in school. A parental survey at the start of the year identified families who may need more support if they needed to self isolate due to limited access to online learning. The school examined ways to support these families so that all children who needed to self-isolate had access to good quality resources and teaching. Reading books, maths workbooks and writing resources were made available and chrome books were available for families to borrow, without a suitable device for remote learning at home.
Parental forums were set up to help give more focused feedback on SEND and curriculum development. The new Relationships Education Curriculum was reviewed by a working team in school and a parental forum, to ensure changes were in line with equality for all. Our the Relationships curriculum, is now based on 'Heartsmart' and the HeartSmart High Five, which instils hope and love in children. Heartsmart.family
A focus on promoting girls' STEM careers resulted in active discussions in class, inviting Parents into school to give STEM presentations, and a display of inspirational women scientists, engineers and mathematicians was created on the corridor by the IT suite and science rooms. Non-fiction books promoting a range of role models in science were introduced.
A new assessment electronic tracking system was introduced in school to enable specific groups to be compared more easily and highlight potential issues to be addressed.
A new reporting system for behaviour, equality and safeguarding concerns - CPOMs - was introduced, to ensure all staff in school were kept informed of concerns raised or incidents, and therefore could support children effectively.
Mrs Power joined us as Pastoral Lead. She supports children in school with social and emotional challenges or friendship issues.
Girls' football was actively promoted, representing the school on a regular basis in inter school tournaments.
Subject leaders investigated a potential gender issue within their subject to ensure equality throughout the curriculum.
From pupil voice surveys, science and computing were viewed in school as equal for girls and boys, but children asked for more examples of women in science as role models whenever possible. The national computing Bebras challenge was completed equally by boys and girls.
It was found that boys dominated playing sport on the MUGAs so a PE - lunchtime girl only time slot proved successful and encouraged more girls to participate on a regular basis.
Boys' writing was a focus of a research project with Manchester University and Trafford Teaching Schools Alliance (TTSA) and staff meetings were held to develop a range of resources to inspire all writers, but particularly reluctant boys
The Equality Act
The Equality Act (2010) was introduced to combine the Sex Discrimination Act 1975, Race Relations Act 1976 and Disability Discrimination Act 1995. Previously public bodies were bound by these three sets of duties to promote disability, race and gender equality. In April 2011 these were replaced by a single public sector equality duty (known as the PSED or the equality duty). This new duty extends to all the aspects of a person's identity that are protected under the Equality Act 2010. These are known as protected characteristics and are:
- gender reassignment
- marriage and civil partnership
- pregnancy and maternity
- religion or belief
- sexual orientation
Public bodies including schools and settings have a general duty to have due regard when making decisions and developing policies, to:
- Eliminate discrimination, harassment, victimisation and other conduct that is prohibited by the Equality Act 2010.
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
- Foster good relations across all protected characteristics – between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
To help schools and maintained EYFS settings 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.