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How Might Primary Schools And Teachers Contribute To The Promotion Of A Culture In Which Diversity Is Valued And Equality Of Opportunity Is A Reality? (Accac, 2001)

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It would seem that today's society has almost reached its climax with respect to its diversity. This diversity includes such issues as social background, culture, race, gender, and differences in ability and disability. Large cities are the main centres of this multicultural explosion:

Ð''the 56 million people in the United Kingdom speak over 300 languages and represent 14 different faiths.'

(Kochar and Mitchell, 2002)

These often coexist alongside one another in everyday life and may not interact. However, in the melting pot of the school classroom they will mix and interrelate with one another, and it is the job of the school and then ultimately, the class teacher, to effectively manage and promote understanding so that each individual may successfully develop into a globally aware citizen.

ACCAC (2000) states that Ð''the role of education is crucial, with schools playing a part in preparing pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life.'

In September 2003, PSE became a statutory element within the basic curriculum for pupils aged 5 to 16. To aid its integration

into the school curriculum ACCAC produced a framework document and supplementary guidance.

The framework document was produced to assist schools to in planning and developing the curriculum subject, "Personal and Social Education". In particular it:

Ð'* offers a definition of PSE

Ð'* sets PSE in a school and national context

Ð'* clarifies its aims and purposes

Ð'* describes the aspects of a person which can be developed

Ð'* identifies the key components in terms of values, attitudes, skills, knowledge and understanding

Ð'* lists Learning Outcomes for Key Stages 1 to 4

Ð'* provides a basis for reviewing and developing existing provision in PSE.

In addition, the document identifies 10 aspects of a person in society that can be developed within the school context:

Ð'* social

Ð'* community

Ð'* physical

Ð'* sexual

Ð'* emotional

Ð'* spiritual

Ð'* moral

Ð'* vocational

Ð'* learning

Ð'* environmental.

(Bullet points from ACCAC PSE documentation online)

The supplementary guidance document was designed to help schools to review and develop their existing provision in PSE. Among other things it:

Ð'* gives advice about the organisation of taught PSE including modes of delivery, and about the management and coordination of whole-school and whole-curriculum provision

Ð'* describes the general features of school life which can enhance pupils' personal and social development

Ð'* emphasises the importance of process in PSE, by giving attention to active and experimental learning

Ð'* discusses the opportunities for assessing, recording and reporting achievement in PSE

Ð'* suggests ways of approaching monitoring and evaluating, which take into account both outcomes and processes

Ð'* offers a number of case studies from schools across Wales, which exemplify good practise in a range of contexts and experiences

(Bullet points from ACCAC PSE documentation online)

Inclusion is a concept that is at the heart of the national curriculum. It emphasizes that:

Ð''Education is a route to equality of opportunity for all, a healthy and just democracy, a productive economy, and sustainable development. Education should reflect the enduring values that contribute to these ends. These include valuing ourselves, our families and other relationships, the wider groups to which we belong, the diversity in our society and the environment in which we live.'

(The National Curriculum Handbook. Dfes and QCA, 1999)

Ð''One way of building respect for a culturally plural society is to put the promotion of the personal and social development of all members of the school at the heart of school life'

(R. Kochar and L. Mitchell, NSCoPSE, 2002)

Teachers can partly ensure that this effective management and the promotion of understanding actually happens by Ð''Identifying pupils who: have special educational needs, including specific learning difficulties; are very able; are not yet fluent in English; and knowing where to get help in order to give positive and targeted support.' (DfEE 1998: 12)

The idea articulated by the government in the White Paper Excellence in Schools was to create: Ð''a society which is dynamic and productive, offering opportunity and fairness to all' (DfEE 1998: 9)

The government has put in place several Ð''acts' to ensure everybody has the right to equal opportunities in education. These acts have made it law that all are entitled to the same education and treatment in the school environment.

These include acts such as:

Ð'* The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 which was updated in April 2005. This act was introduced to Ð''address the problem of inequality between disabled and able-bodies people. It legislates for key areas of employment, public transport and access to goods, facilities and services, including educational services.' (Dfes)

Ð'* Special Educational Needs and Disability Act (SENDA) 2001, Ð''amended part 4 of the DDA to place anti-discrimination duties on those responsible for the provision of education. This includes further and higher education institutions, adult and community providers, and specialist colleges.' (Dfes)

Ð'* The



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