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Don't be afraid, speak up - silence hides hate

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Discrimination or prejudice at school can have a huge impact on all students, but there are ways that you can tackle these issues and help all young people better understand the world around them

When hate happens at school, it can have a big effect on the pupils, from lowering attendance and educational outcomes to harming the relationship between the school and the community. But school is also a great environment in which to teach pupils about discrimination, the impact it has, and why it must be opposed.

What responsibilities do schools have?

Every school has a legal duty under the Equality Act 2010 to address prejudice and discrimination and promote equality. Schools should have:

  • An equalities policy.

  • A school curriculum that is inclusive.

  • An ethos which supports and proactively values difference and diversity.

  • Guidance for all staff, about their responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010.

  • Clear procedures for reporting and dealing with incidents.

Schools that are controlled and funded by Warwickshire County Council are also required to report all prejudice related incidents to the council on incident forms.

What happens next?

Reports to WCC are reviewed to ensure that the incident was dealt with appropriately and support offered to the school if needed.

The report is also collated, analysed and shared with Partner agencies in order to examine patterns and trends across the county and to help inform future partnership activity and/or areas where additional support is required.

Where can schools get help?

Diversity and prejudice are extremely difficult issues to tackle, but WCC provides guidance and resources to schools that can be found on their website.

There are also organisations with expertly designed resources and education inputs for schools to use to help them tackle the issue professionally and sensitively. Within Warwickshire, these include:-

Victim Support provide preventative work and awareness raising workshops in primary schools. This service is funded by The Police and Crime Commissioner and is offered free of charge to schools. Expert counsellors from Victim Support deliver an assembly to students about recognising each other’s differences and how these are positive things that should be celebrated. Schools are provided with resources to create visual boards that can be displayed within the school and act as a reminder for the children of the key messages.

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Warwickshire Police provide the Sophie Lancaster Foundation Educational Programme in Secondary Schools throughout Warwickshire. The training is run by a PCSO School Officers who are based across the county. It takes the format of an educational game that shows young people how easy it is to be more tolerant and have an open mind to accept all people, despite their lifestyle or appearance. It is designed for Year 7 students and above, to reach out to pupils at the stage they are most likely to be susceptible to developing prejudices and intolerances.

Find out more

Warwickshire Youth Justice Service

Warwickshire Youth Justice is made up of staff from various agencies, including Warwickshire County Council, Warwickshire Police, Warwickshire Probation Trust and Public Health, who are working together with young people, parents and families to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour and to reduce reoffending. WYJS can also provide young people with support, so they can avoid getting into trouble with criminal justice agencies. We recognise that parents can be significantly affected by their child’s behaviour, and have a dedicated service for parents which includes support, guidance and practical techniques to help.

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Other resources

You can also access posters, bands and more for your school from our resources page.

See Resources

Don't be afraid, speak up - silence hides hate

report hate now