Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI)
Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Strategy
Creating our sense of Belonging
Work Hard - Be Kind - Take Responsibility
As Educators we acknowledge that structural discrimination exists in society, and we commit to preventing it from happening in our academy. We believe that everyone has the right to attend HAOC and feel respected, happy, and safe.
Our response to discrimination is to use education to raise awareness, influence change, and protect ourselves and others.
We feel it is important to create psychological safety for students and staff, so they can provide insights on what is or isn’t working at HAOC, this is both in service of creating a sense of belonging for all, and to ensure that individuals can speak up when they need to.
What’s our vision?
At Harris Academy Ockendon our vision is that everyone has a strong sense of belonging. We welcome everyone and actively support a climate where identities are explored, respected, and celebrated. We understand that our intersecting identities are opportunities for connection between us as learners and employees. We seek first to understand, are not afraid to challenge injustice and communicate skilfully in person or online using inclusive language.
How do we turn our vision into a reality?
- Develop an understanding of key EDI concepts and language, so we can hold courageous conversations and share collective responsibility. Language that is derogatory is not appropriate to use in our school. We should never make negative reference to peoples’ characteristics. For example, using language such as “that’s so gay”, this is homophobic and creates a culture where members of the LGBTQ+ community are excluded.
No member of our community may ever use the N word, (relating to race), the P word (race) or the P word (travellers) in any context.
- Challenge gender stereotypes. We understand that sex refers to someone’s biological sex and that gender is a social construct linked to masculine and feminine behaviours and activities. We want to avoid reinforcing gender stereotypes by not using phrases such as “being more ladylike”. We ensure that we use gender-neutral phrases whilst addressing groups. For example, saying “right year 8” rather than “right boys” will help people feel more comfortable.
- Conduct reasonable and fair discussions and follow our guidance on how to create psychological safe spaces for all. It is important that we have intelligent debates without stereotyping, rudeness, or generalising. We always challenge microaggressions. Examples of this include “but where is your family actually from?”.
- Hold one another to account and challenge oppressive toxic language to create an inclusive culture. We should always challenge inappropriate language even if it is intended as a joke or banter. For example, “he runs like a girl”.
- Model inclusive behaviours. All staff and students demonstrate appropriate use of language, how to be an ally and how to take a stand in a non-aggressive way.
- Respond to discrimination with the use of education. We may ask questions to discover “why” a situation was unacceptable. For example, if a student says “boys don’t cry” the adult may seek to ensure the student understands why it is a harmful stereotype.
- We sanction abusive language. We have zero tolerance on abusive language and will challenge and sanction (as appropriate) both students and staff.
- Explore our power, privilege, and blind spots. Take responsibility and ownership for our mistakes. Actively, engage in training or education to close any gaps.