Equal Opportunities Policy
Joeys is committed to providing equality of opportunity for all children and families and works in accordance with all relevant legislation, including:
Ø Race Relations Act 1976
Ø Sex Discrimination Act 1986
Ø Children Act 1989
Ø Disability and Discrimination Act 1995/2005
We believe that the group’s activities should be open to all children and families, and to all adults committed to their welfare. We aim to ensure that all who wish to work in, or volunteer to help with Joeys have an equal chance to do so.
At Joeys we;
· provide a secure environment in which all our children can flourish and in which all contributions are valued
· include and value the contribution of all families to our understanding of equality and diversity;
· provide positive non-stereotyping information about gender roles, diverse ethnic and cultural groups and people with disabilities;
· improve our knowledge and understanding of issues of anti-discriminatory practice, promoting equality and valuing diversity; and
· make inclusion, a thread that runs through all of the activities of the setting.
Joeys is open to every family in the community. (Please see our admissions policy)
· We advertise our service widely using our website and Facebook page.
· We reflect the diversity of members of our society in our publicity and promotional materials.
· We provide information in clear, concise language, whether in spoken or written form.
· We base our admissions policy on a fair system.
· We ensure that all parents are made aware of our equal opportunities policy.
· We do not discriminate against a child or their family, or prevent entry to our setting, on the basis of colour, ethnicity, religion or social background, such as being a member of a travelling community or an asylum seeker.
· We do not discriminate against a child with a disability or refuse a child entry to our setting because of any disability.
· We develop an action plan to ensure that people with disabilities can participate successfully in the services offered by the setting and in the curriculum offered.
· We take action against any discriminatory behaviour by staff or parents. Displaying of openly racist insignia, distribution of racist material, name calling, or threatening behaviour are unacceptable on or around the premises and will be dealt with in the strongest manner.
Joeys will appoint the best person for each job and will treat fairly all applicants for jobs and all those appointed. Applicants are welcome from all backgrounds and posts are open to all. Commitment to implementing Joeys’ Equal Opportunities Policy will form part of the job description for all workers.
· We seek out training opportunities for staff and volunteers to enable them to develop anti-discriminatory and inclusive practices, which enable all children to flourish.
· We review our practices to ensure that we are fully implementing our policy for equality, diversity and inclusion.
Valuing diversity in families
Joeys recognises that many different types of family successfully love and care for children.
· We welcome the diversity of family lifestyles and work with all families.
· We encourage children to contribute stories of their everyday life to the nursery.
· We encourage parents/carers to take part in the life of the setting and to contribute fully.
For families who speak languages in addition to English, we will develop means to ensure their full inclusion.
· We work in partnership with parents to ensure that the medical, cultural and dietary needs of children are met.
· We help children to learn about a range of food, and of cultural approaches to mealtimes and eating, and to respect the differences among them.
Our aim is to show respectful awareness of all the major events in the lives of the children and families in Joeys, and in our society as a whole, and to welcome the diversity of backgrounds from which they come.
In order to achieve this, we aim to acknowledge all the festivals which are celebrated in our area and/or by the families involved in Joeys:
- Without indoctrination in any specific faith, children will be made aware of the festivals which are being celebrated by their own families or others, and will be introduced where appropriate to the stories behind the festivals.
- Children and families who celebrate at home festivals with which the rest of Joeys is not familiar will be invited to share their festival with the rest of the group, if they themselves wish to do so.
- Before introducing a festival with which the adults in Joeys are not themselves familiar, appropriate advice will be sought from people to whom that festival is a familiar one.
- Children will be encouraged to welcome a range of different festivals, together with the stories, celebrations and special food and clothing they involve, as part of the diversity of life.
All children will be respected and their individuality and potential recognised, valued and nurtured. Activities provided, and the use of play equipment selected, offer children opportunities to develop in an environment free from prejudice and discrimination. We encourage children to develop positive attitudes about themselves as well as to people who are different from themselves. Appropriate opportunities will be given to children to explore, acknowledge and value similarities and differences between themselves and others. Our Curriculum encourages children to empathise with others and to begin to develop the skills of critical thinking.
We do this by:
· making children feel valued and good about themselves;
· ensuring that children have equality of access to learning;
· recognising the different learning styles of girls and boys, making appropriate provision within the curriculum to ensure each child receives the widest possible opportunity to develop their skills and abilities;
· positively reflecting the widest possible range of communities in the choice of resources;
· avoiding stereotypes or derogatory images in the selection of books or other visual materials;
· celebrating a wide range of festivals;
· creating an environment of mutual respect and tolerance;
· helping children to understand that discriminatory behaviour and remarks are hurtful and unacceptable;
· ensuring that the curriculum offered is inclusive of children with special educational needs and children with disabilities;
· ensuring that children learning English as an additional language have full access to the curriculum and are supported in their learning; and
· ensuring that children speaking languages other than English are supported in the maintenance and development of their home languages.
These will be chosen to give children a balanced view of the world and an appreciation of the rich diversity of our multi-cultural society.
Materials will be selected to help children to develop their self-respect and to respect other people by avoiding stereotypes and derogatory pictures or messages about any group of people.
Joeys recognises the wide range of special needs of children and families in the community, and will consider what part it can play in meeting these needs.
Planning for Joeys’ meetings and events will take into account the needs of people with disabilities.
These are unacceptable in Joeys.
The response will aim to be sensitive to the feelings of the victim(s) and to help those responsible to understand and overcome their prejudices.
The time, place and conduct of meetings will ensure that all families have an equal opportunity to be involved in the running of Joeys.
Signed on behalf of
Milnthorpe Family Centre Directors
Katie Smyth, Manager Reviewed January 2017