What do we mean by social justice?
Social justice means children and adults from all identity groups have the same rights, opportunities, access to resources, and benefits. It recognises that inequalities in society are sometimes embedded historically and must be addressed. Poverty, disadvantage and other forms of inequality are all examples of what needs to be addressed. Education is an essential part of this.
Why is this important to us at Tees Valley Education?
‘a commitment to protecting children from poverty is… more than a slogan or a routine inclusion in a political manifesto; it is the hallmark of a civilised society’ – UNICEF (2012)
As a Trust, we recognise that our communities have faced unprecedented challenges in recent years and many of the communities that we serve continue to face the most serious cost-of-living crisis that they have faced in decades.
We recognise that growing up and living in hardship is immensely difficult. We also recognise that we exist to not only educate our children and communities, but to serve them too. This means we want to be aware of their needs and make social justice one of our core priorities as schools.
How do we support and champion social justice?
There are a number of important ways in which we currently aim to champion social justice through our schools, work with children and communities. This is not an exhaustive list, but these are some of the ways in which we are deliberate and intentional about championing social justice as school communities.
Here are some examples of what our commitment to this means to individuals and groups in our schools and across Tees Valley:
|To children||To families/communities||To our teams/colleagues||To other schools/partners|
|A curriculum and lessons that are designed to give you the very best education.|
Helping you understand more about social justice and poverty through lessons, assemblies and other activities.
Opportunity to learn more about careers and future jobs, helping you to see that your dreams are not limited by your background or wealth.
Making the school day affordable for you and your families, so that poverty doesn’t need to make school life hard or make you feel different.
|Regular support and ears that are ready to listen across our schools.|
Making the school day and cross-curricular activities accessible by considering what activities we design and their impact on families.
Opportunity to regularly celebrate and champion the achievements and ambitions of your child.
Providing your child with opportunity to take part in additional activities, holiday programmes and other support opportunities.
Raising awareness about the needs of our families and communities through regional and national networks.
|Regular CPD and coaching framed around social justice and the need to understand disadvantage.|
Opportunity to contribute to regional and national thinking on the social justice agenda through research papers, writing and events.
Dissemination of best practice, blogs and research through a dedicated Virtual Learning Community (VLC).
CPD and teacher-education rooted in trauma-informed practice and the science of learning; designed to help challenge educational inequality.
Regular opportunity for colleagues to collaborate with colleagues across our schools and a regional/national network of other schools.
|Best practice resource sharing and dissemination of evidence-informed approaches to tackling educational disadvantage.|
Opportunity to work with TVED leaders to diagnose your local need and the concept of ‘doorstep disadvantage’.
One-off or regular virtual or face-to-face workshops designed to support your teams (teaching and non-teaching) about educational disadvantage and ways to tackle it.
Sign up to regular research and best practice links via our TVEduResearch Roundup (email us for further details on the contact form below).
Collaboration and support with system-leadership, Trust and school improvement within your school or MAT.
Introduction to organisations and schools leading excellent work on these agendas.
To find out more about our commitment to social justice contact us on the following: