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Begin by reading the following four descriptions and deciding which relates to each of the four words: DISCRIMINATION, DIVERSITY, EQUALITY and INCLUSION. N.B. Each description relates to ONE of the four words.
The ???????? show where the correct word should be placed.
When you have finished, check your answer with the correct version in the link at the bottom of this learning activity. Don’t be surprised if you find that this is quite a challenging exercise, especially if you haven’t explored this topic before.
The concept of ???????? encompasses acceptance and respect. It means understanding that each individual is unique and recognising our individual differences. These can be along the dimensions of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs or other ideologies. It is the exploration of these differences in a safe, positive and nurturing environment. It is about understanding each other and moving beyond simple tolerance to embracing and celebrating the rich dimensions of ???????? contained within each individual.
???????? in education is a pairing of philosophy and pedagogical practices that allow each student to feel respected, confident and safe so he or she can learn and develop to his or her full potential. It is based on a system of values and beliefs centred on the best interests of the student, which promotes social cohesion, belonging, active participation in learning, a complete school experience and positive interactions with peers and others in the school community. These values and beliefs will be shared by schools and communities. ???????? education is put into practice within school communities that value diversity and nurture the well-being and quality of learning of each of their members. ???????? education is carried out through a range of public and community programmes and services available to all students. ???????? in education is the foundation for ensuring an inclusive society.
???????? in education means that personal or social circumstances such as gender, ethnic origin or family background, are not obstacles to achieving educational potential and that all individuals reach at least a basic minimum level of skills.
The Equality Act of 2010 identifies seven different types of ????????. In education, ????????signifies treating one individual differently to another and in the context of music education, it may, for example, result in allowing one learner access to particular music-making opportunities but denying that access to another.
Check your answer with the correct version here. Now, move on to the next learning activity.
If possible, discuss the following with your fellow CME students or other fellow music educators. You may find it helpful to note down your responses as you consider each question and then look at the sample responses. As you consider these issues, bear in mind that your ‘solution’ has to be considered in the context of your work and, in some cases, your timetable as a visiting teacher also needs to be borne in mind.
1. A girl is discouraged from playing in a rock band because her father says it’s not really a suitable thing for girls to do – and he’s the one paying!
Sample response: Discuss with both parents (if possible) the father’s reservations and explore the benefits of the girl’s participation in ensemble activities. Possibly find out if the daughter’s participation could be done in a manner they would be happy with.
2. You have a Muslim girl in your group; would you offer her the opportunity to learn to play the trombone?
Sample response: Yes, she would be offered the same opportunities as the rest of the group.
3. A pupil with Asperger’s Syndrome disrupts the group with their poor behaviour. Should they be treated in the same way as an able-bodied person who disrupted the session in a similar fashion?
Sample response: It would depend on your knowledge of the child’s condition and the severity of the Asperger’s. Assuming they are in a mixed group and they are able to interact constructively within the group, allowances for the condition would be made in preparation for the teaching but disruptive behaviour would be addressed as it would with any student.
4. A child will only be good in your session if he/she plays the drum. Others in the group want to play the drum and complain. What can you do? Of your strategies, which is your preferred strategy and why?
Sample response: It is important that everyone gets the opportunity to play the different instruments on offer in the session. The child on the drum may discover that if they play something else, they enjoy that even more. You could let the child have their own way and play the drum in each session but this would discriminate against the other children.
Read the following text about the 2010 Equality Act:
Until 2010, there were several laws about discrimination but on 1 October 2010, the government of the day consolidated and strengthened them into one Equality Act.
The 2010 Equality Act defines discrimination in four ways:
1. Direct discrimination occurs when a young person is treated less favourably than another because of a protected characteristic*, because of his/her association with another person who has a protected characteristic (but this does not apply to pregnancy and maternity – see below), because of being mistakenly seen as having a protected characteristic, because of pregnancy and maternity, where a female pupil is treated less favourably because she is or has been pregnant or has given birth in the last 26 weeks or is breastfeeding a baby under 26 weeks old (if the baby is older than 26 weeks, unfavourable treatment would be classed as direct sex discrimination).
*The Act defines nine protected characteristics: age; disability; gender reassignment; marriage and civil partnership; pregnancy and maternity; race; religion and belief; sex; sexual orientation. For more detailed information about protected characteristics, see equalityhumanrights.com/private-and-public-sector-guidance/guidance-all/protected-characteristics.
2. Indirect discrimination occurs when treating all pupils in the same way results in putting pupils with a protected characteristic at a disadvantage. It depends on the following conditions being met: a provision, criterion or practice is applied equally to all relevant pupils including those with a protected characteristic.
3. Discrimination arising from disability occurs when a disabled pupil is treated unfavourably because of something related to his/her disability (as distinct from being because of the disability itself, which would be direct discrimination as above) and such treatment cannot be justified.
4. Failure to make reasonable adjustments for disabled people. There has been a duty on responsible bodies of schools to make reasonable adjustments for disabled pupils and prospective pupils since 1995. The new Act extends the duty so that a school must also provide auxiliary aids and services.
Having read the above, do you want to change or re-think any of your answers to Learning activity 2?
Spend a few minutes reflecting on your initial responses to the questions in Learning activity 2 and comparing them with your current thinking.