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Teachers to get ‘anti-racist training’ as part of new Welsh Curriculum

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The Welsh Government has announced school staff and other education professionals are to get diversity and anti-racist professional learning (DARPL) as Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic histories and experiences become a mandatory part of the Curriculum for Wales.

The Welsh Government say they’re committed to creating an Anti-Racist Wales by 2030, which calls for zero tolerance of racism in all its guises.

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It say that in order to achieve this, Wales’ education system must broaden pupils’ understanding and knowledge of the “diverse cultures which have built our past and present”.

Wales’ first Black headteacher, Betty Campbell MBE, pioneered a curriculum which included Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic histories. One of her former pupils, Chantelle Haughton, Principal Lecturer in Early Childhood Education at Cardiff Metropolitan University, is driving a national approach to empower all educational staff with the knowledge, skills, empathy, and confidence to celebrate and value diversity.

Resources, training, and guidance for educational professionals are available in one place through the DARPL virtual campus

The grass roots of the project were sewn earlier this year, with anti-racist professional learning for school-based practitioners. From the autumn term, provision will extend to early years and further education practitioners. A new anti-racist professional learning module for senior education leaders will launch in the Spring.

DARPL has been fast-tracked as one of the new professional learning areas supported by Welsh Government as part of its recently announced National Professional Learning Entitlement

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The Education Minister, Jeremy Miles, launched the project at Llanwern High School alongside DARPL Director Chantelle Haughton and Rachel Clarke, Mrs Betty Campbell’s granddaughter and a partner in delivering and steering DARPL.

Llanwern High School has its own connections to the ground-breaking headteacher. They work in partnership with Team DARPL. They were the first ever winners of the Betty Campbell MBE award for promoting the contributions and perspectives of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Communities at the Professional Teaching Awards Cymru.

The Minister for Education and Welsh Language, Jeremy Miles said: “It’s been a pleasure to launch this exciting project at Llanwern High School, while seeing the important work pupils and teachers are already doing to make their school and teaching truly anti-racist.

“This high-quality national approach to professional learning will help the education workforce deliver a curriculum which reflects and respects everyone.

“I strongly urge all educators to get involved with DARPL and as we work towards our ambition for an anti-racist Wales by 2030.”

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Chantelle Haughton, said: “At this time of step-change with the new Curriculum for Wales, we have the opportunity to support educators to ensure significant change.

“Professional learning and re-thinking professional practice are the golden keys. DARPL provides the opportunity to enable equity and cynefin for every child in Wales.

“Please join us in DARPL’s national conversation and action community. DARPL is for everyone involved in education and childcare in Wales.”

Commenting on the news, Leader of the Welsh Conservatives, Andrew RT Davies MS said: “Wales has seen a 10% fall in teacher numbers since 2011, which represents 4,000 fewer teachers despite there being 7,000 more students.

“From poor morale, to large class sizes and the shambolic implementation of the new curriculum, the Labour Government are making no efforts to compete for and retain great teaching talent.

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“This decision represents little more than a sticking plaster that will do nothing to attract more teachers to Wales. Labour needs to do better.”

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