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The ‘London for All’ autumn conference, Wednesday October 22nd will provide training sessions on Measuring Social Impact, Building Relationships with Business and link local VCS expertise with the regional picture.
Race on the Agenda hereby gives notice to its members that our Annual General Meeting (AGM) for the financial year 2013/14 is scheduled to take place on 27 November 2014 at Resource for London, 356 Holloway Road, London N7 6PA.
Registration will be from 6.15pm and the formal AGM will begin at 6.45pm. Refreshments will be provided.
ROTA PRESS RELEASE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday 24 September 2014
Free Schools failing black and Asian children, new research shows
Free Schools were supposed to put power into the hands of local communities but they are failing children from Black, Asian and minority Ethnic communities (BAME) and increasing inequality, according to a new report.
Building on previous reports by ROTA and NASUWT this new Report again finds that a substantial proportion of free schools are not operating fair and inclusive admissions policies. It also finds that Black, Asian and minority Ethnic parents face unfair barriers when they try to set up free schools of their own.
Evidence gathered from free schools opened in 2013 suggested 60% are breaking the law by not explicitly considering equality and inclusion in their admissions policies. In this Report we confirm this finding. It is of particular concern that many free schools prioritise the children of staff, founders or specific feeder schools. Interviews, auditions or testing pupils by ability or aptitude are also carried out by a substantial number. There is evidence that such selection tests can disadvantage or deter applicants who do not have access to specialist preparation or coaching.
The Equality Act 2010 and the Public Sector Equality Duty exist to support schools to tackle unlawful discrimination, meet diverse needs, identify and address the reasons for different educational outcomes for different groups and create environments where pupils feel safe and free from all kinds of bullying and discrimination.
This Report shows that since the free school programme began, although there is some improvement of awareness about the need to address equality and inclusion, only a very small minority of free schools appear to be taking positive steps towards this goal.
The expectation that free schools would generate significant interest in opportunities for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities to address some persistent educational inequalities is not being fully realised. The Report finds that barriers continue to affect BAME communities in their efforts to establish free school projects.
Andy Gregg, ROTA’s Chief Executive said: "We are very concerned at what these findings yet again show that free schools are failing in a core function to ensure that statutory duties are met, the Department for Education is also failing to make sure that free schools take promoting equality seriously."
Professor Gus John said: “The recent study by ROTA has found ‘widespread lack of compliance with the statutory requirement to publish equality information and equality objectives’ and a commensurate lack of knowledge and understanding of the Equality Act 2010. David Cameron recently called for the teaching of ‘British Values’, including ‘Respect for the rule of law’, in every school. The Government should now make sure that academies and free schools demonstrate compliance with equality legislation and ‘respect for the rule of law’ in all their functions or face being shut down or put in special measures.”
We are required by our funders to monitor how members use our events/training/research reports. Please complete this short survey in order to download our report. You will be re-directed to the report once the survey is completed. The survey is available HERE.
For more information or to request an interview, please contact our Chief Executive, Andy Gregg Tel: 0207 697 4066 email email@example.com.
Race on the Agenda (ROTA) is a London-based, BAME-led social policy organisation focused on issues affecting Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities. All ROTA’s work is based on the principle that those with direct experience of inequality should be central to solutions to address it. Our policy priorities of health, education and criminal justice are shaped by the lived experiences of BAME communities and their organisations.
CELEBRATING SOCIAL JUSTICE
1st October – 18th November
October is Black History Month in the UK; an opportunity to celebrate and raise awareness of black cultural heritage, history and experiences today.
Islington Black History Month Festival is renowned as London’s leading programme for Black History Month celebrations, and this year promises to be the biggest and best festival yet.
This year’s programme includes a film festival, exhibitions, talks and work with schools, with an inspiring theme of social justice; raising awareness of the fight for race equality in history and contemporary culture.
Black History Month is for everyone, and all events are free or low cost, so get involved and get inspired.
Download your festival programme here.
ROTA recently commissioned Rob Berkeley to write a position paper on the state of racial justice and equality in the UK. Rob has had a long track record in the race equality sector and until recently was the Chief Executive of the Runnymede Trust. Continue >>>>