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Developing an Anti-Racism Framework for Initial Teacher Education

Developing an Anti-Racism Framework for Initial Teacher Education

11 June 2020

The aim of the project is to undertake research which will generate new data and evidence to inform much needed policy development in the publication of a freely available and widely disseminated, trusted, accessible and research-informed anti-racism framework for Initial Teacher Education (ITE such as PGCE and SCITT courses). This is of vital importance to education given that policy and hence guidance for ITE providers on a concern for racial inequities is absent in current policy. This has led to a situation in which the most recent DfE survey, which mirrors previous results, revealed that only 53% of newly qualified teachers, six months into their first post, felt well prepared to teach pupils “from all ethnic backgrounds” [sic] (53%) and only 39% felt well prepared to teach pupils with English as an additional language.

There remains continued differential patterns of education access and outcomes for pupils from BAME heritage as revealed in the government’s own Race Disparity Audit and updated figures. The way that we educate current and future teachers must change in order to break this cycle.

The research undertaken in this study will:

  • review the global literature on effective anti-racism ITE provision
  • survey the current ITE provision landscape revealing best practice and needs

The research will also be cognisant of current guidance on anti-racism for teachers (e.g. the NEU’s anti-racism charter: Anti-racism charter | NEU) and current reports on racism in HEIs (e.g. UUK’s Tacking Racial Harassment in Higher Education: tackling-racial-harassment-in-higher-education.pdf (universitiesuk.ac.uk)). tackling-racial-harassment-in-higher-education.pdf (universitiesuk.ac.uk)

The evidence from this research will inform the collaborative development of an anti-racism framework and accompanying resources emanating from best practice revealed by the survey, for dissemination across ITE providers.

This project is jointly funded by the UKRI QR SPF (internally awarded by the Policy Academy) and a commission by the NEU (National Education Union). Heather Smith is the PI and Professor Vini Lander is the Co-PI. Marsha Garrett is a visiting RA for this project. The project ends in August 2021. The following organisations are partners: UCET (Professional body representing all HE ITE providers); NALDIC (Professional organisation for teaching of pupils with EAL); Centre of Race Education and Decoloniality; Show Racism the Red Card; Universities of Sanctuary; BAME Ed Network.