The EQualities Award was developed in response to the Equality Act 2010 which established nine ‘protected characteristics’; age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, religion and belief and sexual identity. The Act places both general and specific duties upon all public bodies, such as local authorities, schools and other state funded educational settings including children’s centres and academies.
The general duty requires public bodies to have due regard to:
The specific duties require local authorities and schools to:
By taking part in the EQualities Award, you will have access to an online audit toolkit. There are two different versions of the audit specifically for schools and children’s centres. Completion of the audit results in a bespoke e-portfolio which brings together all the evidence required by the specific duties into one accessible and coherent reference document. The e-portfolio is designed to be a ‘living’ document that can be updated as required.
This will also be of interest to Ofsted Inspectors looking for evidence across the key judgements as set out in the Common Inspection Framework (2015) including safeguarding, SMSC, personal development, behaviour and welfare and closing gaps in progress and attainment.
“When making a judgement on the effectiveness of leadership and management, inspectors will evaluate the extent to which leaders, managers and governors actively promote equality and diversity, tackle bullying and discrimination and narrow any gaps in achievement between different groups of children and learners”. (Ofsted 2015)
Estyn inspectors looking for evidence across all aspects of the key three questions as set out in the Common Inspection Framework (2010).
EQualities awarded schools and children’s centres also receive an engraved contemporary wall plaque to mark their achievement and have licence to use the EQualities Award logo on their website and stationery. The award is valid for 3 years, after which a re-application can be made.