Raising the engagement and attainment of Ethnic Minority pupils
The key issues
Over half of White, Indian and Chinese pupils now achieve at least five good GCSE passes
Just three in ten Black Caribbean children and four in ten of those of Pakistani or Black African origin.
Why is this an issue?
Underachievement endangers social cohesion and leaves personal and economic potential unrealised.
New statutory duty on schools to assess the impact of their policies on minority ethnic pupils and to monitor the attainment of minority ethnic pupils.
Why the underachievement?
Poverty is not the only factor. Policy, practice and procedures within schools and the wider education system have a major impact.
Good practice of successful school
Strong leadership: The headteacher and senior managers must lead an effective strategy that is applied across the whole school
High expectations: Every pupil is expected and encouraged to achieve their potential by teachers and parents. These expectations are underpinned by the practical use of data to monitor the achievement of particular groups of pupils to pinpoint and tackle underperformance
Effective teaching and learning: Lessons are planned and delivered as effectively as possible, with support provided for bilingual pupils, and teachers are able to reflect the cultures and identities of the communities represented in the school in their lessons
Ethos of respect, with a clear approach to racism and bad behaviour: There is a strong ethos and culture of mutual respect where pupils are able to have their voices heard. There are clear and consistent approaches to bad behaviour, bullying and tackling racism across the whole school with a focus on prevention
Parental involvement: Parents and the wider community are positively encouraged to play a full part in the life and development of the school.
Key features of effective schools
Schools that are effective in raising the attainment of Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Somali and Turkish heritage pupils have the following features in common. They:
identify where pupils from Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Somali and Turkish communities are under-achieving;
strengthen the use of data to inform learning and teaching;
target appropriate support;
develop inclusive learning and teaching approaches;
build effective whole-school structures and systems that focus on under-achieving groups as part of a whole-school improvement strategy;
ensure school senior leaders take a lead in the monitoring and evaluation of impact on pupils’ learning and attainment;
embed coaching as a means of professional development to support partnership teaching and to bring about improvements in learning and teaching;
plan regular opportunities to enlist pupils’ view on learning and what the school can do to improve practice;
strengthen the work with parents and the community to support the learning of their children.
Effective teaching and learning
Lessons are planned and delivered as effectively as possible.
Teachers are equipped to reflect the diverse cultures and identities of the communities represented in their school through their lessons.
The content of the curriculum is key to engaging children and young people in learning.
However, many BME groups state that they do not see themselves (culture, history, values) reflected in the curriculum and feel alienated and disengaged from learning as a result.
What can we do?
Teachers can make subjects more relevant to pupils’ own experience and to reflect their cultural heritage.
Towards an inclusive curriculum
What we mean by an inclusive curriculum?
How does an inclusive curriculum help improve engagement/attainment for our EM pupils such as Afro-Caribbean, Bangladeshi, Somali and Yemeni pupils?
Consider current delivery of an inclusive curriculum.
National Curriculum ‘principles for inclusion’
Develop a curriculum that supports identity and cultural diversity:
By using appropriate resources
By presenting a broad and balanced view of diversity, culture and identity.
By challenging assumptions, misconceptions, stereotypes
Benefits of an inclusive curriculum
Motivate and engage all pupils regardless of background
Prepare every child for a life of diversity
Make the curriculum relevant to all pupils
Approaches to inclusive curriculum
Build in opportunities for pupils to speak about their experiences and listen to those of others
Use resources that promote cultural diversity
Use examples of creativity, achievement, invention etc. from a wide range of cultures in every subject.
Giving space on the curriculum for the histories of the ethnic groups represented in school.
Develop lessons and displays that reflect the different languages and cultures within the school.
Examples of schemes of work.
The QCA’s Respect for All website, is designed to give teachers the tools to do this.