In this post we will explore one of the school website requirements where schools often struggle. Publishing their equality objectives. We find that schools neglect to publish this information on their school website. When it is there it is often incomplete and hard to find. It appears as though schools are not sure what they should be posting. We hope to help you to publish your school website equality objectives to ensure your site is complaint. The full requirement can be found in section 16 of the school website requirements guide.
Publish specific and measurable objectives.
Your equality objectives should be based on your analysis of data and other evidence. As a result they should focus on those areas where you have agreed to take action to improve equality and tackle disadvantages. Furthermore they should be regularly reviewed alongside the progress you are making to meet your equality objectives.
Here are three examples of objective statements that aim to address equality priorities, but would not meet the requirement to be “specific and measurable”.
- Increase the percentage of boys in key stage 2 achieving age related expectation in mathematics.
- To train staff on how to respond to an incident relating to Prevent.
- Narrow the gap in attainment between disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged pupils.
The same objectives are below however this time they have been modified to make them “specific and measurable”
- By the end of the school year 2018/19, the percentage of boys in key stage 2 achieving age related expectation in mathematics will increase from 70% to 75% and to 80% by the end of the year 2019/20.
- By July 2019 95% of staff will feel confident in responding effectively to an incident relating to Prevent as shown by the end of year staff survey.
- The attainment between disadvantaged pupils and non will improve year on year to meet a target of 80% by the end of 2020/21.
What should you evidence?
To evidence the three General Duty areas, you could publish and/or reference a range of information ranging from other policies (eg bullying, exclusions etc) to performance information on the achievement and attainment levels of pupils.
In fulfilling the legal obligations cited above, you should be guided by nine principles:
- All learners are of equal value
- Recognise and respect difference
- Foster positive attitudes and relationships and a shared sense of cohesion and belonging
- Observe good equalities practice in staff recruitment, retention and development
- Aim to reduce and remove inequalities and barriers that already exist
- Consult and involve widely
- Society as a whole should benefit
- Base our practices on sound evidence
- Measurable objectives
You should structure part of your policy statement around these principles and outline how they would be evidence in your school. Ordinarily it is not advisable to take a text dump of the legislation and place it in a policy document. So make sure you write the content in the context of your school.
DfE advice for school leaders and governing bodies states that a school “should set as many objectives as it believes are appropriate to its size and circumstances; the objectives should fit the school’s needs and be achievable”.
It is up to you as a school to decide on the format you will adopt for publishing equality information and objectives. For most schools, setting up an equalities page on your website will be the best approach. This will mean the content will be easy to locate. As with all statutory content, we recommend you publish this in a readily accessible format, and reference all legislation in your content.
It would be useful to publish information on the following alongside each objective and how it relates to your school context:
- Why you have chosen specific objectives, including any relevant consultation and engagement.
- A short description of what is going to be done to achieve each objective.
It’s time to review your equality objectives information on your school website. Use our School Website Requirements Guide to help you with this. While you are doing this, consider restructuring this area of your site so all of the statutory information relating to your equality information can be found on one page.
Also you can download a checklist here that we've created for you to use as a starting point to check the status of the equality at your school.