School-Home Support is celebrating Pride this year – by acknowledging the work we’ve done in the past few years, as well as recognising the work that we need to do in order to be as inclusive as possible.
As part of this, we are unveiling our logo throughout Pride Month in the rainbow colours on our social media accounts – and incorporating black, brown and trans pride colours as well.
Jaine Stannard, Chief Executive of School-Home Support, said: “We took the decision to adopt the rainbow flag (including black, brown and trans pride colours) this month because we have been doing a lot of work internally to make School-Home Support a safe and inclusive environment for all. We are committed to creating a safe space for anyone who interacts with us – whether you’re a colleague, a parent, carer or a child. We aspire to celebrate diversity in our charity.
“We know that the rainbow flag is something that organisations need to earn. We feel, as an organisation, that the work we are doing around equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) gives us the honour of flying the flag loud and proud.”
Working to make School-Home Support a more inclusive environment
In February 2020 we set up an EDI group to ensure that we were actively looking at ways to make School-Home Support the most inclusive charity it could be.
Over the past 18 months the EDI group has:
- Reviewed internal staff policies to reflect EDI best practice.
- Provided compulsory EDI training to all existing staff and new-starters.
- Offered development opportunities to all staff on diversity and inclusion topics – including LGBTQ+ allyship with Stonewall, and racial bias training.
- Made greater use of case studies that reflect the diversity of the families we work with.
- Worked with our Board of Trustees – they have been able to access our EDI network sessions and we are providing EDI training. We will be supporting them to improve the diversity of the board through a targeted recruitment campaign.
- We will be providing guidance to and supporting those staff who wish to share their gender pronouns within the workplace from June 2021 onwards, as a tool for visibly demonstrating trans allyship both internally within the organisation and externally.
How we have helped LGBTQ+ youth
A few months back we talked about our work with one LGBTQ+ young person called Dean. When we first met Dean he was having a tough time at school. “I felt anxious going to school,” he explains, “and my behaviour was getting worse too.” When Dean was first introduced to his Practitioner, Emily, he was struggling to manage a full week without being excluded, and as a result, his attendance was dropping.
Emily took the time to establish a good working relationship with Dean, ensuring that he trusted her as someone to support him. The more she got to know Dean, the more she began to see that some of his more volatile behaviour was in relation to his mental health. She advocated for him at school and worked with Dean to find ways to calm things down and recognise certain triggers.
Recently Dean has discovered his love of drag. He really looks up to RuPaul’s Drag Race winner Bianca Del Rio – who he describes as “really funny”. Dean’s drag person, Kerstin, has also been helping him with his self-esteem. “When I am in drag, I feel confident,” Dean stated. “I feel less lost in myself… I feel pretty and sassy.”
His Mum is so proud of her son’s progress recently. “Emily has been a fantastic support for us as a family,” she said. His Mum is also ecstatic about her son’s blossoming drag career: “I think it’s absolutely amazing when my son is in drag. It brings out his self-esteem and confidence. And he looks beautiful!”