Posted: 15 June 2020
The Independent Schools Council and
the associations it represents fully support efforts to tackle
racism or any other type of discrimination - there is need for
positive, meaningful change.
Racism is a serious issue for all schools and for wider
The ISC wishes to share the following
"We have been in correspondence with Tiwa Adebayo, who is playing a
pivotal role in drawing attention to this important issue in
schools, beginning with the publication of an open letter in The
The ISC has communicated its support to Tiwa and her fellow
campaigners in developing practical suggestions to help prevent
pupils from experiencing racist abuse and to share best practice
reminders with schools across the UK.
We know that our constituent associations are looking at what more
they can do through professional development programmes, diversity
and equality group meetings, as well as by working with equality
organisations - such as HMC working with the Stephen Lawrence
Charitable Trust to examine how the curriculum could benefit from
greater attention to inclusion (read the HMC statement in response
to the Black Lives Matters campaign at:
One of the ISC's affiliate associations, the Boarding Schools'
Association (BSA), has created a resource hub for schools to help
efforts to tackle racism or any other type of prejudice
The Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI)
The Independent Schools Inspectorate is a government approved
independent inspectorate for independent schools, quality assured
on behalf of the Department for Education.
Like Ofsted, the ISI considers how effectively schools deal with
discrimination, including racism, in all its forms. Inspectors
review policies and, crucially, evaluate the effectiveness of their
implementation through interviews with pupils and teachers,
anonymous questionnaires and opportunities to speak individually
with inspectors. Where a school fails to encourage respect for
others and/or deal effectively with racism, it will be judged as
not meeting the standards and the DfE as regulator will take any
The following ISC press statement was published by Tes in an
article on 2 June, 2020 (see:
Julie Robinson, chief executive of the Independent Schools
Council, said: "It is heart-breaking to read of the harrowing
experiences detailed in this letter. Speaking out about racism is
key to tackling it and I am sure school leaders will welcome
conversations with the young people in their care about this issue
to ensure they know how to share concerns or seek advice.
"We know that schools strive to be inclusive and tolerant
environments in which the wellbeing of every young person comes
first. Should a pupil ever be worried about racism or feel they
have been the victim of abuse of any kind they should report it
immediately. We are unequivocal - racism cannot be tolerated."