9 out of 10 teachers have had no training on how to deal with homophobic bullying. Diversity Role Models introduces a positive way of tackling homophobic bullying by bringing role models into the classroom to explore stereotypes around gender, sexual orientation and other types of difference. The Equality Act 2010 dictates that schools promote positive relationships between protected groups, eliminate discrimination, and promote equality; Diversity Role Models works towards helping schools achieve this.
Our interactive programme covers PSHE key stage three and four objectives on developing good relationships and respecting the differences between people. Ideally workshops will target Key Stage 3 to reinforce the learning around Different Families that is taking place in many primary schools across the country, however our sessions are bespoke and can be adapted to suit the needs of the school.
Key Stage Three and Four Objectives
PSHE Key Concepts of Personal Wellbeing Key Stages 3 & 4. Pupils should be taught:
- Personal identities
- Understanding that identity is affected by a range of factors, including a positive sense of self
- Recognising that the way in which personal qualities, attitudes, skills and achievements are evaluated affects confidence and self-esteem
- Understanding that self-esteem can change with personal circumstances, such as those associated with family and friendships, achievements and employment
- Appreciating that, in our communities, there are similarities as well as differences between people of different race, religion, culture, ability or disability, gender, age or sexual orientation
- Understanding that all forms of prejudice and discrimination must be challenged at every level in our lives
- Identities and diversity: living together in the UK
- Appreciating that identities are complex, can change over time and are informed by different understandings of what it means to be a citizen in the UK
- Exploring the diverse national, regional, ethnic and religious cultures, groups and communities in the UK and the connections between them
What does a Diversity Role Models workshop involve?
Our role models* are from a wide range of backgrounds and demonstrate that LGBT people can achieve success and happiness - despite widely publicised negative statistics. The sessions are also designed to evoke empathy in students who bully others due to perceived differences.
A session typically involves:
- discussion around homophobia: what it is, why it happens and how it impacts on people
- exploration of gender stereotypes and how they may limit students' aspirations and potential
- an opportunity for role models to relay personal stories which emphasise the benefits of embracing diversity within society. This will be guided by the workshop facilitator to ensure suitability
- a guided Q & A session between the role models and the students. Typically, students have many questions and we give them an opportunity to voice these, where appropriate
* All role models have participated in an extensive training session which covers planning a narrative, tackling difficult issues and child protection policies.
Wider School Impact
Part of our legacy is to inspire young people to become role models themselves and challenge bullying within their own peer group. We also encourage schools to establish an anti-bullying group and can provide materials to support this. We are able to come into schools to prepare staff for our visit to ensure there is a whole-school approach to tackling homophobic language and behaviour.
We offer a brainstorming session with the school council or anti-bullying group, on the ways they can work towards eradicating homophobic bullying and making the learning environment safe for every student.
Diversity Role Models offer an option to run these sessions within Physical Education lessons, with a greater focus on gender stereotypes and homophobia in sport.
Our work reflects the school's policies and is prepared in consultation with the Senior Management Team. The programme is specifically designed to empower young people to deal with bullying in a positive way.