Aiming High

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Marie Parker-Jenkins, Des Hewitt, Simon Brownhill & Tania Sanders

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    To our families and friends

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    Glossary of Terms

    • ‘Asian’ – used generically to include people of South East Asian heritage, for example Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Kashmiri.
    • asylum seeker – someone who has crossed an international border and is seeking safety or protection in another country. This involves awaiting a government decision as to whether they can remain.
    • attainment – the personal achievement of pupils and their acquisition of knowledge as measured in an academic environment and evidenced by performance in formal tests, such as the Statutory Test Framework and GCSE (QCA 1999).
    • bilingual student – a student who has access to, or needs to use, two or more languages at home and school. It does not imply fluency in the languages and includes students who are beginning to learn English (Rutter 2001).
    • Black – a term used increasingly since the 1970s to refer to people of African, Caribbean, mixed/race or dual heritage, and those of South Asian descent.
    • class – social class refers to the socio-economic position of people in society, their financial situation and their access to public services.
    • community – a group of people with shared values, ethnic, religious and/or linguistic background.
    • culture – ideas, techniques and habits which are passed on by one generation to another.
    • cultural racism – dislike or discrimination against someone on the basis of their culture.
    • development – in learning this can be conceived as the child's adaptation to his or her environment. Children develop physically, emotionally, cognitively and socially, and some would argue that children also develop at a moral or spiritual level.
    • dual heritage – the possession of two cultural backgrounds.
    • EMAG – Ethnic Minority Achievement Grant
    • English as an Additional Language – pupils who speak English as an additional language (EAL).
    • ethnicity – relates to a person's place of birth or historical place of origin, symbolized by visible signifiers such as colour, dress, lifestyle or birthplace allegiance.
    • Eurocentric – placing White Europeans and/or Americans as the norm and the sole contributors to such things as scientific discovery.
    • Every Child Matters – a new government approach (DfES 2006c) to the well-being of children and young people from birth to age 19. Organizations that provide services to children are required to work together in terms of policies and strategies to improve outcomes for children.
    • gender – refers to the social meaning of what it is to be male or female rather than biological characteristics.
    • Gypsy – a term originating in Egypt which refers to a range of different ethnic and cultural groups who live a nomadic lifestyle.
    • Islamophobia – hostility towards Islam and fear and/or dislike of Muslims.
    • Local Authority (LA) – local authority, formerly known as LEA (Local Education Authority), legally responsible for the management of public affairs at a local level.
    • madrassah – religious or mosque school.
    • mentoring – to guide, support and give advice.
    • minority ethnic group – people who are identifiably different, sometimes through language, accent, religion or dress, from the majority ethnic population.
    • mixed race – refers to people who have more than one racial origin, now more commonly replaced by the term ‘dual heritage’.
    • parent/carer – someone who has the legal responsibility for a child, aged 0-18. Legal responsibility varies according to case orders placed by the court and is mostly a matter of joint responsibility with the local authority.
    • practitioners – teachers, trainees, teaching assistants (namely adults working in the classroom with pupils).
    • racism – consists of conduct or words or practices which disadvantage or advantage people because of their colour, culture or ethnic origin. It may be overt or subtle, and underpinned by power.
    • RAISE project – funded by the Yorkshire Forward regional development agency to reduce and remove inequalities concerning the achievement of young people of Pakistani and Kashmiri heritage.
    • refugee – someone who has had to leave his/her own country and who is afraid to return there owing to a fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality or membership of a social or political group.
    • religious literacy – an awareness of the diversity of religious groups in society and of the importance of religion as a sense of identity.
    • Roma – gypsies originating from Eastern Europe.
    • Travellers – people who travel around the country for economic reasons or as a lifestyle choice.

    About the Authors

    Marie Parker-Jenkins is Professor of Research in Education at the University of Derby, researching issues of social justice with particular reference to ‘race’ and ethnicity. Before having an academic career in the UK, she taught in Bermuda, Canada and Australia where she obtained practical knowledge of teaching children from culturally diverse backgrounds. She is the author of over 100 publications including books, reports and journal articles. Her current research focuses on the expansion of religious schools, particularly those based on an Islamic and Jewish ethos; and in her consultancy capacity, she runs workshops on citizenship and identity.

    Dr Des Hewitt has taught from Year 5 through to doctoral students over the last year! As Assistant Head of Teacher Education he has principal responsibility for managing the initial teacher education of Primary teachers. His research and teaching encompass Primary English, Primary Modern Foreign Languages, English as an Additional Language, e-learning and the development of self-regulated learning. He has published papers in respect of teacher education, the role of schools facing challenging circumstances, and assessment for learning in higher education institutions. Des is currently working on a book about the use of learning strategies in schools (Understanding Effective Learning). Future projects include the development of out of school learning with the National Forest and the development of independent learning in Early Years settings in a professional development cluster in the East Midlands.

    Simon Brownhill (MEd) is a Senior Lecturer in Initial Teacher Education at the University of Derby, co-ordinating the PGCE 3–7 course and the Foundation Subjects for the PGCE and BEd. Prior to this he worked for a number of years in primary schools, particularly in the early years. With a varied experience of teaching children in a range of Key Stage One, Two and Three settings, Simon continues to work actively with children in primary schools on a voluntary basis. His teaching and research interests include working with learners from culturally diverse backgrounds, developing creativity in the classroom, and effective learning and teaching in English. A long-term interest in effective behaviour management has led to Simon writing a number of practical and academic books about this topic. He is currently studying for his Doctorate in Education (EdD) which examines the male role model in early years education.

    Tania Sanders (MEd) was appointed as the Primary Achievement Co-ordinator for the Ethnic Minority Achievement Service (The Access Service) for Derby City LA in 2000. Since then her work has involved teaching and supporting asylum seeker and refugee pupils. Tania also plans and delivers professional development for teachers and teaching assistants. One recent successful initiative has been the co-ordination of a cross-agency group that involves an educational psychologist, a nurse practitioner, a mental health worker and a university lecturer looking at the emotional well-being of asylum seeker and refugee pupils. This collaborative approach to training delivery has been recognized by the National Children's Bureau. Tania is also one of the authors of the Raise Project, 2004 (raising attainment in multi-ethnic and multi-faith schools with particular regard to Muslim pupils of Pakistani and Kashmiri heritage). Tania's chapter looks at the impact of the Talking Partners Project on raising the attainment of EAL pupils in one Derby city school. In her spare time Tania is an ardent rock-climber and has climbed in the Alps, the Dolomites and has made an attempt on the Old Man of Hoy, Orkney.

    Foreword

    There is a growing body of literature highlighting improvements in the educational attainment of Black and minority ethnic pupils in compulsory education. However, it is clear that gaps in attainment levels between Black and minority ethnic pupils and others remain. At the same time, a raft of government initiatives has been created to specifically address this situation. Current government proposals are in the shape of the Education and Inspection Act 2006. According to the Department for Education and Skills, the overarching aim of this legislation is to ensure that ‘every child in every in school in every community gets the education they need to enable them to fulfil their potential’.

    At a time when only one third of newly qualified teachers in the UK report that they feel prepared to meet the needs of pupils from Black and minority ethnic communities, it would seem that teachers and schools also need support in their work with pupils from culturally diverse backgrounds.

    This book is a valuable addition to the literature describing how practical school and classroom initiatives can assist Black and minority ethnic pupils raise their attainment. The focus on a variety of ‘culturally diverse bckgrounds’ is particularly helpful. Examples are drawn from both primary and secondary schools. These are of particular use in assisting practitioners in schools with either new arrivals and/or established minority ethnic groups.

    The main body of the book provides a series of scenarios and practical guidelines for teachers, teaching assistants and policy makers in schools who are both supporting new pupils holding refugee/asylum status and are also handling the issue of Black male underachievement and Gypsy/Traveller children. The scenarios presented and questions posed are thought provoking and valuable for both existing teachers and those working towards Qualified Teacher Status.

    Many suggestions are made with regard to parental involvement and that of the wider local community. Primary teachers/trainees and secondary teachers/trainees would benefit considerably from the practical training advice contained in the book.

    CecileWright

    Nottingham Trent University

    Acknowledgements

    Our research for this book has involved discussion and correspondence with a number of people who have all played a role in providing us with invaluable information and informing our practice. We would like, therefore, to acknowledge these individuals and organizations.

    For the purposes of the study we conducted research in successful schools which could be described as ‘attaining schools’, and our thanks go to:

    Barry Day and the staff at Greenwood Dale Community School, Sneinton, Nottingham;

    David Nichols and the staff at Littleover Community School, Derby.

    In terms of local authority support we were assisted by:

    Catherine Conchar, Equalities Officer, Nottingham City Local Authority;

    Lorna Simpson and Maureen Rhule, Advisory Support Teachers for African Caribbean Learners, Access Service, Derby City Local Authority;

    Nigel Groom, Head of the Traveller Service, Derby City Local Authority.

    We also wish to acknowledge the Teacher Development Agency in supporting our earlier project work (2002–4), much of which underpins this publication.

    We were very keen that a variety of practitioners gave input to our manuscript as it evolved and we wish to thank the following who acted as reviewers for the book: Maxine Bull, St Chad's Infant School; Judith Lloyd Williams, Sinfin Primary School; and Dr Musharaf Hussain, head teacher, the Islamic School, Nottingham.

    Within the University of Derby, we would like to acknowledge the specialist advice of Khrissey Hartley, Widening Participation Project Leader; Lyn Senior, Post-Compulsory Education and Training Manager; Jane Keeling, Subject Advisor: Education; the research assistance of Sarah Dyke and Jane Lyon; and the secretarial assistance of Selina McCarthy.

    We are also grateful to Jude Bowen at Sage Publications for on-going support of the book.

    The foreward was provided by Cecile Wright, Professor of Sociology, Nottingham Trent University, to whom we are particularly indebted.

    While a number of people and organizations have thus been consulted over issues contained in the book, the opinions expressed are our own; likewise any errors or omissions.

    MarieParker-Jenkins, University of Derby
    DesHewitt, University of Derby
    SimonBrownhill, University of Derby
    TaniaSanders, Derby City LA

    2007.

    How to Use this Book

    We have shaped the book's chapters around a number of themes or strands within social diversity. Chapter 1 serves as an introduction to the book and the context in which practitioners are responding to meeting the needs of learners from culturally diverse backgrounds. Chapter 2 provides discussion and strategies for responding to the changing nature of diversity in the classroom, with particular reference to the needs of refugee and asylum seeker children and induction for new arrivals.

    The focus then moves in Chapter 3 to supporting bilingual learners with recognition of the importance of the home language and strategies to support learning in an additional language. Discussion in Chapter 4 refers to the issue of raising the attainment of ‘Black boys’, particularly those groups which government reports state are under-performing academically, namely Black Caribbean and Black African, and Pakistani and Bangladeshi boys (DfES 2006a). Here we highlight identity issues based on ethnicity, gender and social class, and consider multiple or mixed senses of identity.

    Of all the groups under-performing academically, Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children in the UK are the lowest achievers, particularly at Secondary level (DfES 2006a). In Chapter 5 we look at the work being done to respond to this group of learners. Part of the success in working with minority groups is also to engage with parents and in Chapter 6 we look particularly at how we can involve and work with parents and the community as partners in supporting children's learning.

    Overall, our aim is to move beyond theory and the rehearsing of social justice and underachievement debates, and to offer practitioners practical suggestions and activities to help raise the academic attainment of their pupils. Whilst much of the discussion has implication as good practice for all pupils, there is particular reference to pupils from culturally diverse backgrounds due to the under-attainment of specific minority ethnic groups. We are advocating an inclusive approach to make sure that every pupil can achieve academically, and that practitioners develop policies and structures which allow for all learner groups to have the best opportunities to succeed.

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    Rowan, L., Knobel, M., Bigum, C. and Lankshear, C. (2002) Boys, Literacies and Schooling: the Dangerous Territories of Gender-Based Literacy. Buckingham: Open University Press.
    Runnymede Trust (1997) Islamaphobia: A Challenge for Us All. London: Runnymede.
    Rutter, J. (1994) Refugee Children in the Classroom. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
    Rutter, J. (2001) Supporting Refugee Children in 21st Century Britain: A Compendium of Essential Information. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham Books.
    Rutter, J. and Jones, J. (1998) Refugee Education: Mapping the Field. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
    Sanders, T. (2004) ‘Cat Have Two Mouses’. Paper contributed to The Report of the RAISE project – The Achievement of British Pakistani Learners. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
    Sarwar, G. (1994) British Muslims and Schools. Available from Muslim Educational Trust, 130 Stroud Green Road, London N4 3AZ.
    Sewell, T. (1996) Black Masculinities and Schooling. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
    Sewell, T. (2007) Generating Genius: Boys in Search of Love, Ritual and Schooling. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
    Shah, M. (2001) Working with Parents. Oxford: Heinemann.
    Sinfin Community School (2003) Supporting New Arrivals in the Classroom. Available from Language Support Department, Sinfin Community School, Farmhouse Road, Sinfin, Derby DE24 3AR.
    Skelton, C. (2001) Schooling the Boys: Masculinities and Primary Education. Buckingham: Open University Press.
    Smit, F., Driessen, G. and Sleegers, P. (2002) Parental Involvement and Educational Achievement. British Educational Research Journal, (August) 31 (4): 509-32
    Smyth, G. (2002) I Can't Read ‘Rag’ and ‘Bug’ – Bilingual Children's Creative Responses to a Monolingual Curriculum: Multicultural Teaching. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham Books.
    Spafford, T. and Bolloten, B. (2001) ‘Supporting refugee children in east London primary schools’, in J.Rutter and C.Jones (eds), Refugee Education: Mapping the Field. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
    Spafford, T. et al. (1995) The Admission and Induction of Refugee Children into School: Multicultural Teaching, Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
    Stacey, M. (1991) Parents and Teachers Together. Buckingham: Open University Press.
    Stead, J., Closs, A. and Arshad, R. (1999) ‘Invisible pupils: the experience of refugee pupils in Scottish schools’, Education and Social Justice, 4: 49-55.
    Teacher Training Agency (TTA) (2002) Qualified Teacher Status. London: TTA.
    Times (2007) ‘Reid set for tough new immigration rules’, 26 January, 3.
    Tizard, B. and Phoenix, A. (2002) Black, White or Mixed Race: Race and Racism in the Lives of Young People of Mixed Parentage. London: Routledge.
    Tizard, B., Mortimore, J. and Burchell, B. (1981) Involving Parents in Nursery and Infant Schools. Suffolk: Grant McIntyre.
    Tomlinson, S. (1991) Home and school in multicultural Britain. London: Batsford Academic and Educational.
    Troyna, B. (1986) ‘Beyond multiculturalism: towards the enactment of anti-racist education in policy, provision and pedagogy’, Oxford Review of Education, 13: 22-36.
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    Vincent, C. and Ball, S.J. (2003) Childcare choices and class practices. London: Routledge.
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    Wright, C., Weekes, D. and McGlaughin, A. (2000) ‘Race’, Class and Gender in Exclusion from School. London: Falmer Press.
    Wright, M., Barge, J.K. and Loges, W.E. (2000) ‘Parent, Student and Teacher Perceptions of Parental Involvement’, British Education Research Journal28 (3): 140-63.
    Wrigley, T. (2000) The Power to Learn: Stories of Success in the Education of Asian and other Bilingual Pupils. Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham.
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    Useful Websites

    A range of resources and information can be found at the following websites:

    100 Great Black Britonshttp://www.100greatblackbritons.com
    1001 Inventionshttp://www.1001inventions.com
    Active 8http://www.nationwidechildcare.co.uk/ activities8.htm
    Amnesty Internationalhttp://www.amnesty.org
    Asylum Aidhttp://www.asylumaid.org.uk
    Black and Asian Historyhttp://www.channel4blackandasianhistory
    Black, Asian and Pakistani Vounteers Grouphttp://www.gos.gov.uk/goem
    Boys 2 Menhttp://www.fathersdirect.com
    Braingymhttp://www.learning-solutions.co.uk
    Britkidshttp://www.britkid.org
    British Red Cross Societyhttp://www.redcross.org.uk
    Centre for the Use of Research and Evidence in Education (CUREE)http://www.curee-paccts.com/index.jsp
    Commission for Racial Equalityhttp://www.cre.gov.uk
    Criminal Records Bureauhttp://www.crb.gov.uk
    Department for Education and Skills.http://www.dfes.org.uk
    Derby City Council, Race Equality Policyhttp://www.derby.gov.uk/primary
    Development Education Associationhttp://www.dea.org.uk
    DfES Anti-racist Teachinghttp://www.insted.co.uk/raise.html
    DfES Statistics/Pupil Performancehttp://www.dfes.gov.uk/rsgateway
    Ethiopian Community Associationhttp://www.ethiopiancommunity.co.uk
    Eurokidhttp://www.eurokid.org
    European Council for Refugees and Exileshttp://www.ecre.org
    European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedomshttp://www.hri.org/docs/ECHR50.html
    Family Welfare Associationhttp://www.fwa.org.uk
    From Boyhood to Manhoodhttp://www.usatfbmf.com
    Generating Geniushttp://www.generatinggenius.org.uk
    http://www.admin.ox.ac.uk
    ICAR Information Centre about Asylum and Refugees in the UKhttp://www.icar.org.uk
    Immigration & Nationality Directorate of the Home Officehttp://www.ind.homeoffice.gov.uk
    Immigration Advisory Servicehttp://www.iasuk.org
    Institute of Race Relationshttp://www.irr.org.uk
    Internal Displacement Projecthttp://www.idpproject.org
    Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrantshttp://www.jcwi.org.uk
    Law Centres Federationhttp://www.lawcentres.org.uk
    Liberty (National Council for Civil Liberties)http://www.liberty-human-rights.org.uk
    Migrant Helplinehttp://www.migranthelpline.org.uk
    Multiversehttp://www.multiverse.ac.uk
    National Black Boys Can Associationhttp://www.blackboyscan.co.uk
    National Coalition of Anti-deportation Campaignshttp://www.ncadc.org.uk
    National Pupil Databasehttp://www.rlab.lse.uk/data/content/dataset
    National Strategyhttp://www.thegrid.org.uk/learning
    North of England Refugee Centrehttp://www.refugee.org.uk
    Office for Standards in Educationhttp://www.ofsted.org.uk
    Oxfamhttp://www.oxfam.org.uk
    Parents’ Gatewayhttp://www.parentscentre.gov.uk/
    Project Proactivehttp://www.nottingham-schools.co.uk/goem
    Pupil Level Annual School Census (PLASC)http://www.schoolweb.gov.uk/locate/management/ tar/plasc
    QCA – Pathways to Learning for New Arrivalshttp://www.qca.org.uk
    Refugee Actionhttp://www.refugee-action.org.uk
    Refugee Arrivals Projecthttp://www.refugee-arrivals.org.uk
    Refugee Camphttp://www.refugeecamp.org
    Refugee Councilhttp://www.refugeecouncil.org.uk
    Refugee Housing Associationhttp://www.refugeehousing.org.uk
    Refugee Studies Centrehttp://www.rsc.ox.ac.uk
    Refugee Women's Legal Grouphttp://www.rwlg.org.uk
    Refugees Onlinehttp://www.refugeesonline.org.uk
    Reporting and Analysis for Improvement through
    School Self-Evaluation (RAISE online)http://www.raiseonline.org
    Respect Campaignhttp://www.respect.gov.uk
    Save the Childrenhttp://www.scfuk.org.uk
    Scottish Refugee Councilhttp://www.scottishrefugeecouncil.org.uk
    Standards in Schoolshttp://www.standards.gov.uk/parentalinvolvement
    Supplementary Educationhttp://www.continyou.org.uk/content.php?CategoryID=632
    Talking Partnershttp://www.educationbradford.com
    Teacher Training Agencyhttp://www.tta.gov.uk
    The ESRC Teaching and Learning Research Programmehttp://www.tlrp.org
    UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency)http://www.unhcr.ch
    United Nations Status of Refugeeshttp://www1.umn.edu/humanrts/instree/vlcrs.htm.
    Welsh Refugee Councilhttp://www.welshrefugeecouncil.org
    Useful Contacts

    National Asylum-Seekers Support Service

    Home Office

    Voyager House

    30 Wellesley Road

    Croydon

    CRO 2AD

    Refugee Legal Centre

    Sussex House

    Bermondsey Street

    London

    SEI 3XF

    Refugee Support Centre

    47 Lambeth Road

    London

    SW8 1RH

    The Resource Unit for Supplementary

    and Mother Tongue Schools

    15 Great St Thomas Apostle

    Mansion House

    London

    EC4V 2BB


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