Racism in UK schools

We need to keep airing the wounds from the ripped band-aid in 2020.

The comments that you see here are from Black Brits’ experiences of racism at school.

Only one person’s comment said that they didn’t experience racism at school. They believed it was due to the area and generation.

School is supposed to be a place of learning and education, however, for some, it is a battleground. 

During the summer of 2020, a student at Nonsuch High School in Cheam, Surrey expressed a racial opinion on social media to another student.

It went viral and the school released a statement that the offending pupil had been “disciplined”.

Which led to hundreds of students from all backgrounds protesting against white privilege.

They felt the school didn’t do enough, and it opened up a Pandora’s Box of racist incidents at the school.

One student spoke of how “My maths teacher refused to learn my name. She only called by my real name twice. Unless you had an English name she would rarely address you”.

Another student saidI have been told that my hair is only plaited because it needs to be ‘tamed’.

Former and current students followed up and signed an open letter:

 “For far too long people of colour have had their voices and experiences dismissed, invalidated, and negated,” 885 students reported in the joint letter.

The school now has an anti-racism strategy which you can read here. The alumni should be proud of what they achieved and what they actioned.

I often think about what it would have been like if my family grew up in a predominantly Black area.

When speaking to friends who did, I listen to their stories in awe where they are not ‘othered’- not made to feel different or felt they had to change their name so it’s ‘easier’ to pronounce. 

It was reported in The Guardian that 95 percent of young Black people have experienced racist language at school.

Seven out of ten young Black people have felt pressure to change their hair at school, which we covered in one of our posts.

One of the points that have been frequently raised by our followers, is a wish for a more inclusive British history. 

An induction of true-life heroes such as Mary Seacole, The Mangrove Nine, and The protagonists from The Bus Bristol Boycott will help young Black children to see themselves.

Another wish is for teachers and members of staff to have strict anti-racism training, so they know how to handle a scenario correctly when a child brings an issue to them.

However, Black and Asian teachers also face racism in UK schools.

A report from January 2020 states that 54 percent of Black and Asian teachers have experienced racial microaggressions.

It then says 46 percent of those felt uncomfortable to report this to management, as they feared lack of support.

After the racial reckoning of 2020, let’s see if schools and governing bodies come correct on their promises on anti-discrimination.

#uk #ukschools #blackinbritain #adeptales #stayadept #blackeducation #antiracism #blm #nonsuch #blackbritishhistory #representationmatters

2 Comments

  1. […] was a red flag because whenever a white person accuses a Black woman of bullying in school, the workplace, or in the public eye it can have dangerous […]

  2. […] Earlier this year we covered the protests from the alumni and students of Nonsuch High School. […]

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