In November 2020, Chief Executive Officers from Multi Academy Trusts across the diocese, members of the Board of Education and Education Department staff met virtually with Deputy Chief Education Officer for the Church of England, Andy Wolfe to begin to explore how schools and MATs can celebrate diversity in their communities.
Andy, Bishop Ruth and others shared their experiences of encouraging this in their school and parish settings and there were discussions about how schools and MATs can be encouraged to explore this more. The group also acknowledged this was the start of a conversation by a group that isn’t itself diverse.
Below you will find power point slides from the meeting, together with links to useful websites.
There are also videos from Bishop Ruth and Manoel Akure, a former student at St Mark’s Church of England Secondary School, whose picture went viral after he was photographed in Bristol praying on top of the Colston statue’s plinth after it was brought down.
Why would we want to spend time in school on global learning?
Being a global citizen is crucial in our world. You only need to look at the climate change and plastics controversies to see that we need to work together to look after God’s creation. Young people are particularly passionate about making a difference! We need to enable them to have the knowledge, skills and understanding to be able to make this difference they want to see.
“Be the change that you want to see in the world.” Gandhi
Focus on what you do best
Look at what you are already doing in your school and the global connections. You may be involved in Fairtrade or a project on plastic use or climate change. You may have a partner school in another part of the world or have links through a parent, staff member or governor to another country and a specific project they are involved with. If not, perhaps looking at respect through the Football Association or Olympics is a way into looking at respect and diversity.
Explore this as a staff team with children, parents and governors
- Work out who is going to take the lead
- Look at timescales for projects
- Look at who can support you and keep you on track
Bridges for Communities – Although based in Bristol it is not just for Bristol. The aim is to connect people of different faiths and cultures, enabling them to build friendships and grow in their understanding of one another. They do work with schools often pairing different schools together but offer a varied menu of initiatives.
On Diversity – An essay collection just published by the Confederation of Schools Trusts and New Schools Network.
Transforming Bristol Together – Perhaps of interest to our schools in the north of the diocese, a growing movement across churches, prayer groups and networks in Bristol that the Diocese of Bristol is involved with.
Who to contact
Karen Sancto, Diocesan Schools Adviser (Taunton Archdeaconry)