Public Service Equality Duty
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:
- Eliminate discrimination and other conduct prohibited by the act.
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
- 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 Disley Primary School 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:
- Equality policy
- SEND Policy
- Behaviour and Anti-Bullying Policy
- Accessibility Plan
It should be noted that in 2011 Disley Primary School was awarded the Inclusion Quality Mark, and it was stated in the accompanying report that:
- The school demonstrates a very inclusive ethos which is embedded throughout the school community.
- The school is constantly moving forward to provide the very best for its pupils and the community it serves.
(IQM report 2011)
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 generally serves an area of social advantage with a small proportion of pupils coming from less privileged backgrounds. We have a low percentage of FSM children (8% versus 19.2% nationally).
Our percentage of children from ethnic minorities is also lower than the national average, as is our percentage of children with English as an additional language and children with Special Educational Needs and or Disabilities.
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 SENCo, Teaching Assistants and external specialist professionals.
We have case study evidence to demonstrate our support for vulnerable pupils.
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 Cheshire East Safeguarding Team and Child Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) for pupils who need this type of expert support.
The Headteacher, Senior Leadrers and a group of governors, have created an Accessibility Plan and written the Equal Opportunities policy. The chair of governors monitors its implementation and ensures a comprehensive review takes place every three years.
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
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 global dimension of our curriculum develops our pupils’ awareness of different countries and cultures.
We have strong links with local faith organisations and regularly invite people of faith to lead our whole school assemblies.
Both at our last Ofsted inspection (Nov 2011)and in our IQM assessment (July 2011), it was recognised that at this school we understand differences and value diverse experiences. The impact of this is a school where every person feels valued, respected and safe.
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 after school clubs which are outside of the school day. Some 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.
At a global level we are proud of our proactive links with Keriko Primary School in Kenya. This has involved several link visits through which our children have an awareness and understanding of life for a child in Kenya..
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.
In Relation to Teaching and Learning
- Educate all about discrimination and prejudice and promote a harmonious environment.
- To reduce prejudice and increase understanding of equality through direct teaching across the curriculum
- To promote spiritual, moral, social and cultural development and understanding through a rich range of experiences both in and beyond the school.
In Relation to Achievement
- Strive for all pupils regardless of ethnicity, age, gender and ability to make exceptional progress in all aspects of their learning and to achieve the highest possible standards.
- To ensure that all ‘vulnerable’ pupils achieve challenging targets. Pupils to make at least good progress
In Relation to Leadership and Management
- Ensure the appointment of all staff is in line with equal opportunities legislation
- To continually consider how well the school ensures equality of opportunity for all its pupils
- To ensure all new and existing policies and procedures take account of our commitment to achieving equality