Equality and Diversity Policy

Equality and Diversity Policy and Action Plan

 

EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY POLICY and ACTION PLAN

Reviewed March 2015

Policy review May 2017

Introduction

This plan has been drawn up by our Inclusion Specialist, Senior Leadership Team and our  Governor with responsibility for Inclusion in response to The Equality Act 2010 which replaces previous existing anti-discrimination laws with a single Act.

The Equality Act protects pupils and staff from discrimination and harassment based on ‘protected characteristics’ (PC) which are disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, gender or sexual orientation.

Under Part 4 of the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA and Disability Equality Scheme (DES). schools already are required to improve accessibility for disabled pupils and for other disabled groups including employees, parents and carers and the wider community.

The Governing Body has key duties towards those with Protected Characteristics (PC):

– not to treat pupils less favourably for a reason related to their PC;

– to make reasonable adjustments for disabled pupils and staff, so that they are not at a substantial disadvantage;

– to plan to increase access to education for disabled pupils and those with PC

– to plan how they can make sure their work supports equality and diversity, and reduce socio-economic inequality

This plan sets out the proposals of the Governing Body of the school to increase access to education for pupils with PC.

– increasing the extent to which pupils with PC can participate in the school curriculum;

– improving the environment of the school to increase the extent to which all pupils can take advantage of education and associated services;

– improving the delivery of information to all pupils so that no groups are disadvantaged

The purpose and direction of the school’s plan:  Vision and Values

Norbury Hall Primary School achieved the Inclusion Quality Mark in 2007 and 2010. This national award reflects the school’s on-going commitment towards involving children and adults in the full life of the school and in helping everyone achieve their best. Inclusion is embedded in the ethos of the school.

Norbury Hall Primary School is a welcoming school where everyone is valued highly and where tolerance, honesty, co-operation and mutual respect for others are fostered.  We are committed to the development of the whole person within a supportive, secure and creative environment.  A broad, balanced and appropriate curriculum provides equal opportunity for all pupils to maximise their potential regardless of age, sex, race, colour, religion or disability.  We endeavour to promote positive relationships with parents, governors and members of the wider community. We believe it is the responsibility of everyone connected with our school community to help us achieve this.

Definition of disability

The disability discrimination duties are owed to all pupils who are defined by the DDA as being disabled, and under the planning duties schools and local authorities have a general duty to improve the accessibility of schools for disabled pupils.

The DDA defines a disabled person as someone who has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on his or her ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities’ (see definition below of normal day-to-day activities).

Physical or mental impairment includes sensory impairments and also hidden impairments.  In the DDA substantial means more than minor or trivial’.  Long-term’ means has lasted or is likely to last more than 12 months.

The definition is broad and includes children with a wide range of impairments, including learning disabilities, dyslexia, autism, speech and language impairments, Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), diabetes or epilepsy, where the effect of the impairment on the pupil’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities is adverse, substantial and long-term.  All those with cancer or surviving cancer, HIV or Multiple Sclerosis are included from the point of diagnosis.

A significant number of pupils (estimated at up to 7%) are therefore included in the definition.

Normal day-to-day activity

The test of whether the impairment affects normal day-to-day activity is whether it affects one or more of the following:

  • mobility;
  • manual dexterity;
  • physical co-ordination;
  • continence;
  • ability to lift, carry or otherwise move everyday objects;
  • speech, hearing or eyesight;
  • memory or ability to concentrate, learn or understand;
  • perception of risk of physical danger

Disability and special educational needs

Many children who have SEN will also be defined as having a disability under the DDA.  It is likely that many of the pupils who have SEN and a statement or who are at School Action Plus will count as disabled.  However, not all children who are defined as disabled will have SEN.  For example, those with severe asthma or diabetes may not have SEN but may have rights under the DDA.  Similarly, not all children with SEN will be defined as having a disability under the Disability Discrimination Act.  In particular some children whose emotional and behavioural difficulties have their origins in social or domestic circumstances may fall outside the definition.

Possible overlap of SEN and DDA disability definition for children and young people

Special Educational Needs Both SEN + Disabled Disabled
Mild dyslexiaEmotional Behavioural Difficulties (EBD – social factors)Mild DyspraxiaMinor speech impairmentMild Learning difficulties Motor Impairment (long term)Learning difficultiesHearing impairmentVisual ImpairmentSignificant DyslexiaEpilepsyNon –verbalADHDAutismEBD  (factors other than social e.g. medical conditions/mental health) AsthmaDiabetesCancer recoveryMental health IssuesDisfigurementLack of limbsSickle cell AnaemiaGross ObesityVery Short Stature

 

Information from pupil data and school audit

The school collects and analyses data related to SEN and disability at least bi-annually. Data is reported to governors termly.

Disabled pupils currently in school have the following needs:

  • Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD);
  • Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD – including Asperger’s Syndrome);
  • Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD);
  • Emotional, Behavioural  Difficulties (EBD);
  • Epilepsy;
  • Hearing Impairment (HI);
  • Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD – including Dyslexia and Dyspraxia);
  • Speech Language and Communication Needs (SLCN);
  • Down’s syndrome
  • Diabetes

 

The school’s strengths and weaknesses in working with disabled pupils

The majority of children at this school who access SEN support do so through differentiated teaching and/or Teaching Assistant support and will have an individual learning plan (ILP) which outlines the actions school, home and other agencies make. The school, in line with national recommendations, has a three staged system which offers support for children with SEN.

Wave 1: Learners who have been identified as having some gaps in learning and will be supported within the classroom context through differentiated tasks and quality first teaching. Appropriate resources and altered plans for teaching will be used to support learners at this stage of the inclusion process.  Parents will be informed that progress may have been identified as slow and as a result, on occasion learners will receive a bespoke home learning plan that promotes development of skills in specific curricular areas.

Wave 2: Where learners have been identified as have moderate or general learning needs specific to several aspects of the curriculum an ILP will be drawn up.  Learners at this stage may follow small group or personal interventions designed to meet specific needs and ensure that progress is ‘ back on track’. In some cases this work will be supported by teaching assistants with specific expertise and training and in other cases this will be a specific teaching focus with the class teacher.  On occasion additional teaching staff will be deployed to support these learners.

Wave 3 : Where learners have specific learning needs identified as having a significant impact on their ability to access an age related curriculum other agencies may well be involved.  These learners are usually guided through a bespoke provision that supports their individual needs and in many cases may well be the result of a statutory assessment giving recommendations for support.  This may formally have been referred to as a ‘statement’ and in light of 2014 reforms may mean that the learner has an Educational Health Care Plan.

Every class has an Inclusion file.  This contains information on each pupil with SEND and outlines their strengths, difficulties and strategies for supporting the pupil in the classroom.  It also contains further information and guidance on a range of needs (ASD, ADHD, SpLD etc) and gives ideas of how to best support pupils with these disabilities.  Children’s ILPs are updated twice yearly at review meetings but also at other times as appropriate, following Person Centred Reviews for example. Appropriate support staff have equal access to this information. A one page profile outlining the strengths and development points for learners who have been identified will also be kept in the file.

Appropriate training is arranged as needed and is provided from a number of sources. Multi-agency planning meetings are held annually to facilitate liaison with Outside Agencies who offer advice, guidance and support in meeting the needs of the pupils we support. These agencies include:

  • The Learning Support Service;
  • the Educational Service for the Sensory Impaired
  • Speech and Language Therapy Service
  • Occupational Therapy Service
  • Children’s Physiotherapy Service
  • CAMHs
  • Jigsaw
  • Psychology Service
  • Behaviour Support Service
  • School Nurse
  • Mosaic

Effective systems are in place to support children:

  • The Inclusion Specialist is a member of the Leadership Team and attends all induction meeting for new parents to briefly outline the inclusion process and introduce herself to parents
  • The school takes account of the needs of disabled pupils when organising classes, particularly at the end of each academic year where the opportunity to reorganise resources and support is taken.
  • Procedures are in place for the smooth transition of pupils from Norbury Hall to Hazel Grove High School to which the majority of children transfer. Liaison with other primary or secondary schools also takes place but on a less formal basis.
  • Each teacher reviews progress half termly and sets targets termly. Reviews of progress against specific targets outlined in ILPS are held at least twice yearly with parents and also the  Inclusion Specialist. Reviews of progress are held for all children termly.
  • Sharing of information with other secondary schools regarding pupils with a statement or EHCP , Wave 2 or 3 takes place during Year 5 transfer reviews, with further meetings being arranged during Summer Term of Year 6. Additional visits to high schools, during the Summer Term prior to transfer, are arranged where appropriate.
  • Frequent support staff meetings are a feature of the school and are used to develop sharing of good practice and for professional development.
  • Wave 2 meetings are held bi-annually to review progress and gain the views of pupils, parents and carers.
  • The class teacher, supported by the Inclusion Specialist and the Leadership Team reviews progress each term through pupil progress meetings, (for example by gender, ethnicity and including those who are socio-economically disadvantaged) ensuring appropriate provision for these groups is in place.
  • Restorative Approaches to resolve  conflict, including bullying, are implemented by staff and children as a positive response to behaviour management issues.

All pupils follow a full and balanced curriculum, appropriately differentiated according to their needs and are encouraged to take a full and active part in school life, including extra-curricular activities, off-site and residential visits. An Equality and Diversity awareness curriculum unit for all pupils is part of the Year 5 PSHE and Citizenship programme.

Provision maps show the range of resources and support mechanisms in place for pupils with special educational needs across the school.

The school’s ground floor is easily accessible for non-mobile children and parents/carers due to the school’s on-going improvements to the physical environment. Consideration is given to DDA and Equality Act legislation when making changes to the school’s systems, organisation and buildings.

Effective systems are in place to support disabled parents and carers:

  • The Inclusion Specialist attends all induction meeting for new parents to briefly outline the SEND process and introduce herself to parents
  • Information to parents is available in different forms on request. The school is increasingly using electronic forms of communication, but alternatives are also made.
  • Designated parking is available.
  • Access requirements for meetings is considered
  • Annual audit of the school premises is conducted by governors and informs future planning and development.

Effective systems are in place to identify and support staff with disabilities and is included as part of positive recruitment practice.

Consultation with Pupils and Parents

For pupils with a statement or EHCP or those at Wave 2 or 3, views and aspirations are formally gathered annually through the Person Centred Review process.  This seeks to establish what is going well and also any concerns or barriers to progress from the pupil’s point of view.  Parents also have the opportunity to express their views either in writing or verbally at the meeting.  This includes the opportunity to express any concerns or queries they may have regarding their child’s progress and the provision in place for them. The views of all other pupils, including those with a disability, are regularly sought on a wide range of issues through the School Council.

LAC and TAC meetings provide opportunities for all parties to make their views known.

Parents can contact school directly or through the school website via email to make their views known.

Management, coordination and implementation

Annual review of the plan will be made by the Leadership Team led by the Inclusion Specialist and reported to governors.

The school’s Equality and Diversity policy is published on the school’s website and is available on request from the school.

Current Practice:

We are committed to an inclusive curriculum and we aim to increase access to the school’s facilities for all by:

a)      Improving the physical environment of the school

b)      Information is presented to and encouraged from pupils in a variety of styles

The Equality Plan is underpinned by the following features of the school:

  • There is effective planning and liaison between appropriate school and support services working with individual pupils within school
  • The Inclusion Specialist  has a leadership responsibility and a reduced teaching timetable and has liaison time for agencies, support staff and families
  • As a school we have high expectations of all pupils.  We aim to establish a positive ethos within the school. We aim to adopt a ‘problem-solving’ attitude in order to overcome barriers to learning for individuals
  • We follow a whole-school positive behaviour management structure and reward scheme aimed at enhancing the self-esteem of all pupils
  • Governors provide very effective management of the school and target resources well

Audit of existing Achievement / Provision

Curriculum- These are aspects which the school feels it has made good progress with:

  • Liaison with external services and agencies regarding individual pupils
  • Using specialist teachers with SEN qualifications to support learning
  • Ensuring that detailed pupil information shared with staff
  • Organising Teaching Assistant deployment to support children’s needs
  • Ensuring that Access Arrangements are made for SATs, (Extra time / Reader/ Amanuensis etc)
  • Establishing a bank of specialist resources available to support specific needs
  • Clear lesson planning showing differentiated work where appropriate
  • Undertaking annual target setting across the curriculum for all pupils
  • Using ‘P Scales’ where appropriate to measure the progress and achievement of specific pupils and set attainable targets with high expectations
  • Encouraging the use of scaffolds to give structured support with writing, particularly for children with Speech, language and Communication difficulties
  • Ensuring that school visits and trips are accessible for all pupils
  • Using a range of teaching methods and styles to facilitate access for all students – e.g. appropriate use of language; questioning techniques; pair work; group work; ‘mind-friendly’ learning techniques to suit all learning styles – visual/ auditory / kinaesthetic
  • Ongoing staff training which addresses a range of support programmes and methods for children with SEN/disability, provided both internally and from Outside Agencies
  • Raising awareness of Equality and Diversity throughout school within the curriculum.
  • Development of mutual support and understanding between colleagues in working with pupils with disabilitie

Physical Access

  • Wheelchair access to all parts of the ground floor school building
  • Disabled Parking Spaces
  • Disabled toilets facilities available
  • Provision of additional space for small group work and individual work for targeted learners
  • Development of a physical environment that is safe and welcoming with positive images reflected in displays around the school
  • Carpeting to facilitate favourable acoustics in some areas of school
  • Handrails on stairs where necessary
  • Provision of specialist equipment and aids
  • Information Access
  • Visual timetables and information supported by signs/symbols used for all pupils
  • Home-school liaison books for targeted pupils
  • Provision of Home School dialogue books across school.
  • Revised end-of term reports
  • Electronic communication with parents increased