At South Lakes Academy we will provide a safe, supportive learning environment with opportunities for each student to develop the skills and knowledge to become a responsible, successful citizen.

We believe that:

• Students are unique in their needs, though processes, learning styles and will be motivated in different ways.
• Parental support and involvement is necessary to motivate students for optimum success in education.
• It is essential for each educator to demonstrate genuine concern and care for each student to learn.
• Self-esteem and self-respect are critical for fulfilling life.
• Students are entitled to a socially, emotionally, physically safe learning environment.
• After given opportunities, everyone is accountable for their own success.

In addition to this we, at Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy, are firmly committed to promoting equal opportunities for all current and prospective staff and students alike. Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy are committed to providing an environment that is free from unlawful or unfair direct or indirect discrimination on the grounds of age, race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability, religious beliefs or any other personal characteristics, and aims to create the conditions whereby all pupils and staff are treated solely on the basis of their merits and potential.

This policy should be read in conjunction with the following documentation:

• Education and Inspections Act 2006
• The Education (independent School Standards) (England) Regulations 2003
• Reference Guide to the Key Standards in each type of Social Care Service Inspected by Ofsted (available at www.ofsted.gov.uk)
• Equality Act 2010
• Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy Accessibility Policy

1) Aims and Objectives

1. To promote the equality of opportunities throughout the whole Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy;
2. To understand and promotes human equality and equal opportunities;
3. To promote good relations and celebrate diversity between the members of different racial, cultural and religious beliefs, or linguistic backgrounds;
4. To provide for and monitor the particular needs of people in terms of gender, sexual orientation, race, age, special educational needs (SEN) and disability;
5. To enable students to take responsibility for their own behaviour and relationships and to challenge stereotyping and prejudice, if and when It occurs;
6. To create an environment that is free from harassment or intimidation;
7. To ensure that all recruitment, employment, promotion and training procedures are fair to all and provide opportunities for everyone to achieve;
8. To ensure that any incidents of discrimination of students by other students are dealt with in a prompt and serious manner.

2) Responsibilities

The Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy management play an active role in monitoring the implementation of the Equal Opportunities Policy, for delegating responsibilities and tasks to other staff, and for ensuring that the policy is known and understood by all staff, students and parents.

All staff are responsible for following the policy and reporting incidents of unequal treatment to the Head of Centre – Tunde Christie

3) Admission of Pupils

Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy admits students usually following a referral from child services or other external agency and are admitted on the grounds of how Kip McGrath can cater for their needs, regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, and/or most cases of disability. However, in some instances (as outlined in Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy Accessibility Policy), owing to the nature of the building it is not possible to admit a person with severe mobility issues at the moment. Our main criteria for selection is that a young person should be able to flourish here, at Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy and that we, as far as reasonably possible, can alter and adapt our facilities to cater for each young person and their unique needs.

With the exception of mobility issues as previously mentioned and full details can be found in our accessibility policy, Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy is committed to full educational inclusion and curriculum and lessons are adapted so that each young person can have full access to a curriculum that is tailor made for them.

Codes of conduct for all staff, students and visitors clearly forbid the verbalisation or vocalisation of any type of discrimination on the grounds of race, culture, religion, gender, sexuality, disability or ability. Furthermore, positive attitudes and awareness of equality of opportunity is specifically taught and explained to all students.

4) Access

Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy occupies a large office on the first floor of a shared office building in the centre of Kendal. While access to the building is on the flat, the room Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy occupies is up a flight of stairs to the first floor. The stairs are equipped with hand rails for support. There are plans to occupy the downstairs office as and when it becomes available, however, toilet facilities are up a further flight of stairs. There are proposals to relocate to a different site in the future. However, for the foreseeable future access to the classroom is not suitable for wheelchair users (please see Accessibility Policy for full details).

5) Appointment of Staff

Job specifications and advertisements will all carry a statement stating that Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy is an Equal Opportunities employer and welcomes applications for all posts from appropriately qualified persons regardless of sex, race, religion, disability or age. All applicants will be assessed against relevant criteria only, for example, skills, qualifications, abilities and/or experience during selection for recruitment. Any person with a disability will be offered any adapted facilities, as far as reasonably possible (in line with the Accessibility Policy) to enable them to demonstrate their suitability for employment at Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy.

6) Staff Development

All employees of Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy will have equal opportunities for training, career development and promotion.
Any person becoming disables while in employment will be given active help and support to retain their jobs as far as reasonably possible.

7) English as a Second Language

English as an additional language can be taught as part of Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy private tutoring service if required. This is available to students of all ages including adult learners.

8) Procedures for Dealing with an Allegation of a Breach of the Equal Opportunities Policy

1. These procedures should be read in line with the Anti-Bullying Policy, Disciplinary and Grievance Procedure and Complaints Procedure.
2. Examples of unacceptable behaviour which would be considered a breach of policy include:

a. Physical assault against a person or group
b. Verbal abuse, insults threats or intimidation
c. Graffiti
d. Distribution of leaflets, magazines or insignia which incite hatred or encourage discrimination or harassment
e. Excluding or inciting others to exclude a person or a group
f. A refusal to co-operate with pupils or staff
g. Making discriminatory comments in the course of discussion or lessons
h. Repeatedly making comments of a sexual or sexist nature

Unless stated otherwise, each statement considers acts of discrimination or harassment on the grounds of either age, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or disability
3. In addition, students and staff should be made aware, and be vigilant, to the fact that the content of some posters displayed on walls could be offensive to others within the Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy community
4. Staff have a duty to report any incidents involving any breach of the policy. Any incidents of racist, homophobic bullying or sexual harassment amongst pupils will be taken seriously, must be dealt with appropriately and reported to the Head of Centre. Procedures outlines in the Anti-Bullying Policy will then follow
5. All staff have a legal duty not to exclude, bully or otherwise harass other staff members. For allegations of bullying and harassment, staff should refer to the Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures.
6. For other breaches of the policy, allegations should be made in writing using the Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy’s Complaints Procedure.

9) Policy Review

This policy, along with most of Kip McGrath South Lakes Academy policies will be reviewed annually as part of our annual review plan. It will be subject to earlier review should there be any statutory changes or following an incident which necessitates a change to policy and procedures.

This policy has particular links to the following policies:
• Behaviour Policy
• Anti-bullying Policy
• Admissions procedure
• Staff Recruitment and Selection Policy
• Child Protection Policy
• Whistle Blowing Policy