Equality and Protected Characteristics
The Equality Act came into force from October 2010 providing a modern, single legal framework with clear, streamlined law to more effectively tackle disadvantage and discrimination. It stated that it is against the law (UK) to discriminate against anyone because of:
• being or becoming a transsexual person
• being married or in a civil partnership
• being pregnant or on maternity leave
• race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin
• religion, belief or lack of religion/belief
• sexual orientation
These are called ‘protected characteristics’, and schools have a duty of care to protect all pupils from discrimination or harassment. It is extremely important for all of us at Gipsey Bridge, that our children grow to be respectful, ambitious and empathetic pupils who respect the world in which they live in.
At Gipsey Bridge, we teach our children about protected characteristics, through whole-school assemblies, our curriculum (including specific PSHE lessons via SCARF Schemes of Work), in class discussions, sporting activities and through our work with the Mini Police.
Here is how SCARF ensures adequate coverage of each protected characteristics:
Lovely link between our curriculum and the protected characteristics. In RE, Class 2 talked about how Guru Nanak was the founder of the Sikh religion and one of his main principles was equality and the need to treat everybody fairly.
The children spent a lot of time discussing why he thought that was so important and how important it is to us. This discussion developed further, moving onto talking about the protected characteristics and how these help protect people from discrimination.
The lesson ended by the children getting into groups and using drama to show scenarios where people were being treated unfairly. The performances were very thought-provoking, and it was lovely to see within each group the drama ended on a positive note where actions were turned round, and apologies given.