Equality Statement and Objectives

Date created – 22/09/2020
Date reviewed by governors – 29/09/2021
Next review date – September 2022

1 Policy Statement and Principles

At Co-op Academy Grange we are guided by the following principles:

  • All learners are of equal value
  • We recognise and respect difference
  • We foster positive attitudes and relationships and a shared sense of cohesion and belonging
  • We observe good equalities practice in staff recruitment, retention and development
  • We aim to reduce and remove inequalities and barriers that already exist
  • Base our practices on sound evidence
  • Set ourselves measurable objectives

The following groups have been identified as key recipients in terms of the provision of this statement:

  • Are being looked after or on the edge of Care 
  • Have Special Educational Needs / Learning Difficulties and Disabilities 
  • Are excluded or at risk of exclusion from school
  • Are from an ethnic group, including those from Gypsy, Roma, Traveller background
  • Have English as an additional language
  • Are missing in education 
  • Have Ill health, including hospitalisation, affecting attendance at school 
  • Are young carers
  • Are offending or at risk of offending
  • Have mental health issues
  • Are in receipt of free school meals 
  • Live in areas of deprivation 
  • Are gender questioning or going through transition
  • Are Lesbian, Gay or Bisexual 

2 What are the protected characteristics? 

The Equality Act 2010 was introduced to ensure protection on the grounds of specific characteristics (referred to as protected characteristics). For schools, this means that it is unlawful to discriminate against students or treat them less favourably because of their sex, race, disability, religion or belief, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, pregnancy or maternity. 

3 Co-op Ways of Being and behaviours

As a school within the Co-op Academy Trust, we are also informed by the Co-op Ways of Being which are:

  • Do what matters most
  • Be yourself, always
  • Show you care
  • Succeed together

We also recognise the Co-op colleague behaviours, and specifically in relation to equality, the following:

  • Endless inclusion – inclusive in our thoughts and actions by showing an active interest in the views, backgrounds and ways of being of my colleagues and the wider community.
  • Caring about our Co-op, our colleagues, the members, customers, and communities that we support and serve. We seek to encourage cooperation between colleagues to promote an environment of trust, mutual respect and support.

4 Equality Objectives priorities and focus

The Equality Act 2010 requires us to publish specific and measurable equality objectives. Our equality objectives are based on our analysis of data and other information. Our equality objectives focus on those areas where we have agreed to take action to improve equality and tackle disadvantages. We will regularly review the progress we are making to meet our equality objectives.

Our Equality Objectives reflect the school’s priorities and draw upon available data and other evidence. Careful analysis of this is undertaken to ensure that we are working to achieve improved outcomes for different groups.

5 Our Equality Objectives

  • To use performance data to monitor student achievement and respond to variations between groups of learners, subjects, courses and key stages, trends over time and comparisons with other schools.  In particular, we will seek to further improve the progress made by boys at GCSE, SEND students at GCSE whilst also seeking to improve the progress and attainment of disadvantaged students and narrow the gap between them and their non disadvantaged peers. 
  • To promote mental health and wellbeing in students with protected characteristics.
  • To narrow the gap in attendance for students with protected characteristics as defined by the Equality Act, by fostering good relationships with parents and carers and seeking to understand the barriers to good attendance.
  • To narrow the gap between vulnerable groups of students and their peers in access to blended learning and online accessible devices, and in this way to reduce or remove inequalities in attainment throughout the school. 
  • Engage with the Co-op young leaders programme to engender and support student voice and engagement in the full life of the school.

6 Related documents

This document should be read in conjunction with other policies within the school that are located on the school’s website (grange.coopacademies.co.uk):

  • Health and wellbeing policy
  • Behaviour policy
  • Safeguarding and child protection policy
  • Pupil premium plan
  • Catch up plan
  • Anti-bullying policy
  • SEND policy
  • Home learning policy
  • CEIAG statement on provider access
  • CEIAG programme
  • Exclusion Policy
  • Admissions Policy

Trust wide policies relating to equality may be found at www.coopacademies.co.uk

7 Consultation

The school participates in an annual consultation with staff, students and parents through the ‘Your Voice’ survey, conducted on behalf of the school by the Trust. This is a good opportunity for interested parties in consulting with and taking the views of the community we serve.

Review of progress and actions taken towards equality 

  • The school follows a rigorous blind recruitment process for positions. 
  • Academic progress data evidence that more students are making progress, and there is clear improvement since the school came out of special measures in 2019.
  • The school has adopted a wellbeing policy and has a mental health champion. We are working with the mental health charity MIND and have a full time counsellor and part time mental health mentors  on site. 
  • Leaders work with key leaders from Co-op to support their Co-op Ways of Being and Co-op leadership behaviours.
  • The school has adopted the Gatsby benchmarks.
  • The curriculum offers a range of pathways, including bespoke solutions when required. 
  • A commitment to support the reading of all students including those who are new to English. 
  • We accept all applicants to the school who live in the local area who wish to study at Grange, and whose education profile is suitable for mainstream school.
  • We accept the largest percentage  of children through the Fair Access Protocol (FAP) than any other school in the city.
  • We have a team of over 40 staff whose sole purpose is to help and support the most in need. This includes SEND support, behaviour support through our on-site alternative provision, and EAL support, through our Fresh Start team.
  • Incorporating a Resourced Provision within school which allows up to 15 students with Autism Spectrum Condition access mainstream lessons with a special school level of support. This is commissioned by Bradford LA. Historically, this provision has been highly successful in terms of both academic and social outcomes for young people.
  • A social skills intervention programme which teaches specific skills to students who struggle to regulate their behaviour. The outcome of this is that they understand their behaviours and the behaviours of others.
  • Flexible learning support from the FLEX team which allows students to be back in class with the support required to reintegrate. 
  • Promoting ‘The Pivotal Approach’ for behaviour management, which is personalised to students’ individual needs. This allows students to thrive and sets out only basic expectations to promote diversity and self-identity. This is leading to less school days being lost due to exclusion.
  • A specific provision for students within school with behavioural challenges. Fledge bridges the gap between mainstream and alternative provision for students in key stages 3 and 4, with dedicated staff used to resource the provision
  •  We engage a Roma worker to enhance and encourage engagement with this group of families.
  • The careful and targeted use of alternative provision to ensure continued engagement with education and to prevent permanent exclusion. A dedicated member of staff manages this, to ensure regular contact between school, student, family and provider. 
  • The Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) curriculum puts equality, diversity and inclusion “at the heart” of all lessons. It encourages all students to think about the kind of person they aspire to be and pushes all teachers to reflect on the education they teach. The school’s PSE curriculum has been re-written to ensure key issues around equality and inclusion are included and delivered. The curriculum covers all aspects of inclusion and diversity including LGBT rights, racial tensions and cultural identity.
  • We calendar the school year to ensure that staff and students are able to celebrate Eid.
  • A Prayer Room is available at the academy.
  • We patrol in the community and have the school Grange Rover to show our presence in the local area before, during and after school.