Following a record number in requests for visits, Show Racism the Red Card (SRtRC) is calling for urgent action to ensure all teachers in Wales are supported by their local authority when dealing with racist incidents and pupil welfare.
Over the last 12 months SRtRC has been contacted by teachers from 16 of the 22 local authorities across Wales.
Some of these teachers were seeking support for workshop provisions whilst others were responding directly to a racist incident at their school.
· Racist incidents were recorded in 13/22 local authorities.
· 38% of teachers who contacted the charity specified that they were doing so in response to a racist incident in their school.
· The second and third highest number of enquiries were made by teachers in local authorities in which SRtRC is not supported by the council.
Comments from teachers:
· Difficulties with Muslim students being stereotyped as terrorists.
· Pupils making racist observations 'shut up you Asian immigrant’.
· Incident outside school involving primary school pupil being racist to an adult.
Whilst the charity has seen extremely positive action being taken by some schools, the lack of engagement from certain councils is deeply concerning.
SRtRC Campaign Manager Sunil Patel said “Our report, published this time last year, highlighted the depth of the problem of racist bullying in our schools.
“In our view, the situation has not changed, rather it seems to have got worse. Parents are now contacting our office, largely due to a lack of confidence in the schools’ capacity to support their children. We call on Local Councils to invest more resources in supporting schools to prioritise racist bullying.
“Just a few weeks ago after highlighting some disturbing racist attitudes at school in North Wales, our funding to support schools in the area was stopped by the responsible Local Council. As such, we must question if there is a real appetite to address racist bullying? Every child deserves a level playing field and we need to have zero tolerance at all levels in the education system.”
Stuart Williams, National Education Union Cymru Principal Officer and Chair of SRtRC Wales Advisory Committee, said:
“The fact that more teachers than ever are now contacting the charity seeking their assistance is alarming. What is clear from these statistics is that incidents like these are rising and will continue to do so if racist attitudes remain unchallenged. As the largest union for education professionals in Wales we are extremely proud of the work we do alongside Show Racism the Red Card in ensuring that the teachers of tomorrow can help educate our young people on why racism is totally unacceptable.”
“Some Local Authorities do everything they can to support the excellent work that Show Racism the Red Card does in educating the young people of Wales. However, there are some Local Authorities in Wales that do not support the charity and they need to do so urgently so that those schools and young people that need assistance can access the knowledge and expertise that the charity provides in its workshops.”
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