Denying racism doesn't make it go away

22nd July 2011 at 01:00

I would like to endorse the sentiments of the article "Racism 'a very real issue' in English schools" (15 July) by relaying my son's experience of racism in a predominately white secondary school in West Sussex.

For over two years his peers referred to him as a "Paki". They made jokes about which country he belonged to and about him being a terrorist.

When I asked the school for help on this matter, the very first thing I was told by the headteacher was that "racism is not a problem in the school". This was, in the headteacher's opinion, a "little problem".

To deny a problem is to collude with it - shamefully this was the response of the headteacher. There was no appreciation of the damage this racism has caused my son and our family, and no strategy for confronting a problem that did not exist in the view of the white, middle-class head.

Name and address supplied.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now