Rhubarb 2020

ST EDWARD’S r h u b a r b

The School has received very thoughtful communications from OSE demanding action on racial injustice. The Governors have appointed Margaret Lloyd, one of the School Deputy Heads, to coordinate the School’s response. She writes: RACIAL JUSTICE PROGRAMME A Teddies approach

If you would like to be part of this transformation either within an Advisory Group or as a guest speaker in Houses, lessons or assemblies please do contact OSE@stedwardsoxford. org . If you would simply like to talk to someone about your own experience at Teddies and how the School could address these issues we would equally be delighted to hear from you. outcomes. And we need to listen to the experiences of current and former pupils and staff. This is the beginning of a long but much-needed transformation. We ask for your help and support. A much more difficult challenge is to address the lack of diversity in the pupil body and the teaching staff – a depressingly stark manifestation of the interplay between race and social class. A lot of our pupils come from overwhelmingly white backgrounds – that’s not their fault, but it is the School’s fault if we fail to challenge their prejudices and teach them to recognize their privilege. Too much casual racism (and misogyny and homophobia) is passed off as banter – we need to educate pupils and teachers that this is not OK, and we have to give everyone the language to challenge it in a non-confrontational and positive way. This requires deep-seated change over time – a bit of unconscious bias training does not fix the problem, and we must carefully monitor our progress so we can adjust our responses – this means better data analysis across academic, pastoral and disciplinary


T he UK has been willfully complacent about racism. We’ve “done” the Stephen Lawrence inquiry, we have people from non-white backgrounds in leading political positions, we’re not America… How tragic that it has taken a

We can begin to address the curriculum immediately. Within the IB, internationalism and multicultural perspectives are an intrinsic part of the

qualification – we have to make sure we are doing this as well as we possibly can. All of our new Perspectives courses (for all Fourth Formers from September) are explicitly required to address issues around empire and colonialism, the legacy of slavery, systemic racism and Euro-centrism. The Pathways courses are also required, where possible, to use examples and materials from outside the western canon or from people who have been otherwise historically

‘...we need to educate pupils and teachers...we have to give everyone the language to challenge it in a non- confrontational and positive way’

horribly public murder to make us examine the racism underpinning our own society – historically, institutionally and individually. Public Schools, their history and traditions deeply entwined with the British Empire in

its pomp, are very much part of the structures that have

at the very least enabled, and frequently encouraged, racism to thrive. OSE have rightly demanded that we make a positive response.

marginalised. Beyond this, we will look carefully at the options available to us within GCSE and A Level syllabuses and will review the Shell curriculum.


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