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Park Lane Academy

‘We aspire to be the best at everything we do’

School Diversity Week 3rd - 7th July

Park Lane is celebrating School Diversity Week 3-7 July

As part of our efforts to ensure our school environment is a place where every child can realise their potential, we will be joining tens of thousands of pupils and teachers taking part in School Diversity Week 2017 to celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT+) equality in education.

Growing up remains unacceptably tough for LGBT+ young people: 40% contemplate suicide, 50% self harm and 96% still hear homophobic remarks. This has a potentially life-long impact on young people’s attainment and wellbeing. Alongside our anti-bullying and safeguarding policies, taking part in School Diversity Week is an important way of actively supporting LGBT+ young people in our school, and of demonstrating our commitment to an inclusive school environment where every young person can be themselves and thrive. It is a chance to explain to all our students the importance of diversity in the world we are preparing them for.

Under the Equality Act 2010 we have a legal obligation to promote understanding about LGBT+ equality and challenge prejudice. Ofsted will assess our approach to educating our young people about LGBT+ issues and combating bullying. Involvement with School Diversity Week has been commended by Ofsted as an indication that a school is fulfilling these responsibilities.

School Diversity Week 2017, organised by the charity Just Like Us (justlikeus.org), was launched with the support of the Department for Education and the Secretary of State for Education, Justine Greening MP, and is sponsored by the Daily Telegraph. It is an annual event, with over 45,000 pupils and teachers taking part last year.

Please do not hesitate to contact Beatriz Diaz, who will be leading our preparations, to find out more.

FAQ for Parents/Carers

What is School Diversity Week?

School Diversity Week is the national celebration of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT+) equality in education. Organised by the charity Just Like Us (justlikeus.org) and endorsed by the Department for Education, the week empowers pupils and teachers to take responsibility for tackling homophobic, biphobic and transphobic (HBT) bullying. In 2016, over 45,000 pupils and teachers took part.

Why do we need to champion LGBT+ equality in schools?

Growing up remains unacceptably tough for LGBT+ young people with potentially life-long impact on young people’s attainment and wellbeing: 2 in 5 LGBT+ young people miss school because of homophobia, 1 in 2 self harm and 2 in 5 contemplate suicide. We need to take action to support these vulnerable young people, and explain to all our students the importance of diversity in the world we are preparing them for.

LGBT+ Young People

1 in 2 self harm

2 in 5 contemplate suicide

9 in 10 hear homophobic remarks

7 in 10 say homophobia affects their school work

Why is our school taking part in School Diversity Week?

As a school, we are committed to creating an inclusive community where everyone – staff and students – can be themselves and realise their potential.

The school and governors have a legal duty to ensure all forms of bullying, including homophobic bullying, are tackled under the Education and Inspections Act 2006. This responsibility was reinforced by the Equality Act 2010 which obliges us to promote understanding about LGBT+ equality and challenge discrimination and prejudice.

Ofsted will assess our approach to educating our young people about LGBT+ issues and bullying. Involvement with School Diversity Week has been commended by Ofsted as an indication that a school is fulfilling these responsibilities.

Are my children too young to discuss issues related to sexual orientation and gender identity?

In line with our legal obligations, we are committed to educating young people about LGBT+ equality and the importance of challenging prejudice and discrimination in age-appropriate ways. This is also true when we tackle other forms of discrimination – on the grounds of race, religion or disability, for example – at all ages. We have a zero tolerance approach to homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying at any age.

School Diversity Week acknowledges that sexual orientation and gender identity are fundamental characteristics of individual identity, protected by law. It champions the fact that all children, no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity, will have the opportunity to live happy and fulfilled lives. It recognises the contributions of LGBT+ people to our culture. By taking part in School Diversity Week, our school will be preparing our students for a world in which the importance of diversity is recognised, and individuals are protected from discrimination.

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