Emotional scenes at Stewards Academy Black History Month assembly
Education: Secondary / Thu 22nd Oct 2020 at 06:00am
STEWARDS Academy has rallied the entire school community to address the issues which arose last week, following the decision to take down some of the posters for Black History Month.
The decision caused some dismay, and this prompted some people to take to social media in a very unpleasant way, causing great distress to the headteacher Mrs Ginger, her family, and the wider Stewards Community. Pupils were particularly upset as they know that they are able to channel their views through the award-winning Ethnic Minority Pupil Voice Group, led by Ms Mohamed and Mr King.
In response to this situation Mrs Ginger joined forces with retired Deputy Headteacher Marie Erwood MBE, who came into school to show her support. Together they spoke to staff and delivered assemblies to all five year groups. One of the reasons that Mrs Erwood received her MBE in 2010 was the work that she had done at Stewards over many years to promote and develop cultural diversity.
During the assemblies Mrs Ginger told each year group that she was very sorry about what had happened last week, and for any distress that had been experienced by staff or pupils. This would never have been her intention, as she has always actively supported the work of the EMPV group. Certainly, her belief in racial justice and equality have never been called into question, as Mr Greenaway was quick to point out. However, she did explain to the student body that last Thursday her mind was very much absorbed with the prospect of her father’s funeral the following day.
The children and staff in the assemblies were visibly very moved by Mrs Ginger’s emotional explanation and representatives from the student body have written the statement below:
“As a student body, we are sympathetic towards the difficult time Mrs Ginger is facing and are sending our dearest condolences to her family. The resilience Mrs Ginger has showed over the past few days is admirable and should be an example to us all.
The Stewards family came together to express their opinions through the Heads of EMPV and Student Leadership Team. Together, we achieved a deeper understanding of unity, planning to improve and grow from the situation.
“In the future, we plan to further widen the awareness surrounding Black History Month by speaking about these with our peers from all backgrounds. As well as this, our community hopes to enlighten and teach each other through assemblies and informative display boards run by the pupils, with the assistance of teachers.”