Diversity, Equality and Inclusion

Dear members of the Channing Community,

As you will be aware, we formed the Channing Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Steering Group (DEISG) in July 2020 under the chairmanship of former parent, Anjula Thompson. The group included current and former students and parents, as well as serving staff and Governors, and undertook an extensive review of existing policies, procedures and practices at Channing to ensure that Diversity, Equality and Inclusion (DEI) was supported at all levels. Today I am delighted to share with you the group’s recommendations and our progress on their implementation. I would also like to thank all members of the DEISG for their valuable work which forms the foundation of our DEI work in school now and for the future.

You will see from the report that the DEISG’s working parties covered a huge range of issues and areas related to school life in great detail, and have made some thoughtful and significant recommendations for the ways in which Channing can support DEI work across the school. These have prompted a lot of discussion at Senior Leadership Team meetings and for Governors since we were presented with them in June 2021, and I am pleased to say that our DEI Action Plan is already well under way.

For example, some of the work we have undertaken since the report was presented to Governors includes:

  • Appointing a DEI lead from the Senior Leadership Team and a designated Governor to lead on this area;
  • Establishing Diversity Officers on the Sixth Form Officer Team for the next academic year;
  • Ensuring we have a clear procedure for reporting, dealing with and recording racist incidents and that staff and students are aware of it;
  • Commissioning and delivering training for all staff on DEI, which took place in September 2021;
  • Reworking the English, History, and PSHE curricula and continuing to review their content. Other subjects, including Art and Music, have also made significant changes to their syllabus content. We know delivering a diverse and inclusive curriculum matters for our students and teachers and it matters to us as well;
  • Introducing the Race Equality Code of Conduct into PSHE lessons across all Key Stages.

It is our fervent hope that our focus on these important issues, underpinned by our Unitarian values of free thinking, acceptance and inclusivity, will ensure that we continue to build a Channing community free from stereotype and prejudice, where students and staff are supported to challenge injustice in all its guises.

Do please keep an eye on our website for details of more developments as they happen, and I will continue to keep the Channing community updated.

With warm regards

Lindsey Hughes
Headmistress