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EQUALITY, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

Barnet has a diverse school community and is one of our greatest strengths and keys to success; our schools are rich in diversity.  Barnet Education and Learning Service (BELS) is committed to support our schools to provide an environment for our children, families and staff that is free from harassment and discrimination by placing respect and equality for all at the heart of BELS ethos, culture by continually improving our service to meet the needs of our school population.

BELS is committed to working in partnership with Barnet Council to eliminate discrimination and has adopted the Equalities, Diversity and Inclusion Policy 2021-2025 which includes the Vision and Commitment statement:

Every person has unique differences. We will build Barnet into a strong cohesive community, where diversity is celebrated, and everyone has equal opportunity regardless of their background. A borough where every person can live, work, and study in an inclusive and safe environment, free from harassment, discrimination and any structural inequalities that could hold them back. We want to create a community where people support each other to take control of their own lives, optimise their independence, and make a difference in their areas and local services.

BELS recognise that within Barnet schools there is disproportionality between Black and White pupils; although compared to national data sets, Black pupils perform comparatively well in terms of attainment, progress and rate of exclusion in Barnet schools.

In November 2020 a multi-agency (including schools) Preventing Exclusion Working Party was established to work collaboratively across the Council in addressing Barnet’s education disproportionality index in establishing a menu of support for schools and families.  This work has now been formalised through the Equality, Exclusion and Attendance Board which is a sub board of the Schools and Settings Standards Partnership Board.

The Preventing Exclusion of Black Boys Project

With support from Barnet, BELS launched The Preventing Exclusion of Black Boys Project with a conference in September 2021 to highlight the issue and provide practical support and advice to schools. 

Orlene Badu was the key speaker at this conference, with Penny Rabiger, Helen Cheung and Iheart providing thought provoking workshops.  Ashmole School presented to us on the implementation and success of their Equalities Committees which is owned and driven by their students, staff and parents. 

Another conference is planned for 10th May 2022 where Angie Browne will be delivering a workshop and Ashmole School will be presenting.

Support and strategies available to schools

Alternative to a fixed term exclusion/suspension

Reciprocal arrangements, for pupils subject to a fixed term exclusion/suspension, were agreed many years ago through BIP (Behaviour Improvement Programme).  At the time, these were effective in ensuring that pupils remained in education even when they had an external fixed term exclusion from school for one day or more.  Many schools paired up, with agreements in place, to facilitate easy access of information, arrangements, contacts and agreed processes of working.

This strategy was further developed by schools in that it was implemented as an alternative to a fixed term exclusion (ATE), using the exclusion criteria as a guide in determining the sanction.

This protocol and resource pack has been written in line with DfE guidance on exclusion to enable the strategy to have a clear purpose in that it will be used by schools as an alternative to a fixed term exclusion.  Parents are under no obligation to comply with an alternative to exclusion and if refused, the school can issue a formal fixed term exclusion (suspension). 

Secondary schools using ATE will be provided with a PRU mentor and primary schools will receive support from IAT.  BICS, with parent’s permission, will also welcome referrals for pupils even if the ATE is only for one day.

The Inclusion Advisory Teamjoann.moore@barnet.gov.uk 

Primary schools can access commissioned advice and support for pupils at risk of exclusion from IAT.  In the Primary phase, IAT will also be supporting schools using the Alternative to Exclusion strategy, with schools being able to access reintegration advice from the team.  For pupils serving an Alternative to Exclusion please use the referral form and send it to ATE@barnet.gov.uk; this is currently a statutory service provided by IAT.

 

IAT also provide an array of traded services to help schools best serve pupils. Learn more about their service offer here.

The Pavilion Study Centre - Joanne Kelly head@pavilion.barnet.sch.uk

Schools can access commissioned mentors for secondary aged pupils at risk of exclusion and for pupils serving an Alternative to Exclusion, please use the referral form and sent it to ATE@barnet.gov.uk and Jo Kelly. PRU mentors are a statutory service offered at no cost.

Primary schools can also access PRU mentors through the Recovery, Reset & Renaissance Project.

 

The PRU also provide traded services, including Respite.

Barnet Integrated Clinical Services (BICS)

BICS provide a range of services to support pupils at risk of exclusion, including challenging behaviour workshops for parents and the Grahame Park Estate Girls Group. This is provided at no cost.

BICS Contact Information

  • If you would like to contact BICS, please e-mail BICS@barnet.gov.uk

  • If you need to talk to BICS, please call the Support Line on 07926 085495 from 09:00 to 17:00 hours.

  • For further information please see www.barnet.gov.uk/bics where you can find leaflets for groups, workshops, family therapy, and more.

 

Please note that BICS is not an emergency service, and should you have any immediate risk concerns you should contact other appropriate agencies.

Educational Psychology Service

Liaise with your school’s Educational Psychologist about concerns. You can learn more about the traded EP service here or view their range of traded and free services and trainings on the Barnet Local Offer.

Early Help

Early Intervention is about taking action as soon as possible to tackle problems for children and families before they become more difficult to reverse (Early Intervention Foundation).  We should aim to identify children, young people and families that may be at risk of future difficulties and provide them with timely and effective support.

Early Help can involve a range of professionals from a wide range of agencies including health, schools, housing, youth work, child & adolescent mental health, substance misuse and domestic violence professionals who can work together to assess and intervene in a family’s difficulties. This is a statutory service. 

If there are child protection concerns - always refer to the Barnet Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) without delay.

Learn how to access Early help support here:

https://wwc.barnet.gov.uk/wwc/working-children-barnet/practitioner-guidance/children-family-and-young-people-hubs-0-19/how

 

Early Help Hubs:

View which Early Help Hub your school is allocated to here.

Early Help, Resilient Schools and BICS – working together to support schools

Early Help, Resilient Schools and BICS are currently working together in a pilot scheme to support clusters or partnerships of schools with pupil transitions (e.g. Year 6 to Year 7) and community concerns.  This is currently provided as a statutory service.

 

Please contact karen.pearson@barnet.gov.uk if you would like to have more information

Whole school interventions

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion consultantstraded service through BPSI

 

Equality Committees – statutory service at Ashmole School

Ashmole School have established Equalities Committees for their students, staff and parents.  These committees have been hugely popular and successful in driving EDI work, ethos and culture throughout their community.  Bal Dhinsa and Rushma McLaren spoke at our conference in September and will be presenting again at the January 2022 conference.

Early Years

The Barnet Partnership for School Improvement (BPSI) offers traded services for Early Years, including:

Visit the BPSI website to learn more. 

 

Educational Psychology Team

The Educational Psychology Team have a range of training packages covering Emotional Coaching, ELSA, Zones of Regulation– contact your school’s Educational Psychologist for more information.

Inclusion Advisory Team (IAT)

Includes Early identification of SEND tool kit and Prevention of Exclusion training - statutory and the SENCO Challenge – Learn about resources in the borough by contacting joanne.moore@barnet.gov.uk

Resilient Schools – Pastoral Forum and Embedding Emotional Coaching

Offered as a statutory service, the Resilient Schools programme takes a whole-school approach to promote and build resilience in schools and address mental health concerns early on. Learn more about the programme here or by contacting Jayne.abbott@barnet.gov.uk 

Growing Against Violence (GAV)

A free range of workshops for pupils covering: 

  • Social media

  • Peer pressure

  • Gangs

  • Stop and Search

  • Knife crime

View the programme flyer and contact jane.morris@barnet.gov.uk or Shaun Wilshire at Shaun@growingagainstviolence.org.uk

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