We're incredibly proud to announce that Deputy Head, Mrs Wilson, was chosen as a finalist in the Boarding Schools' Association Award for 'Inclusion and Diversity Excellence' and highly commended at the awards ceremony on Wednesday.
Mrs Louise Wilson joined Charterhouse as Deputy Head (Pupils and Community) in September 2020.
She was initially asked to lead the School’s work in response to the Black Lives Matter movement during the summer of 2020 but saw the opportunities to expand this to lead all aspects of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at the School and quickly became the nominated Inclusion Lead. The focus of the EDI Strategy this year mirrors that of the BSA, prioritising ethnicity. Mrs Wilson has also been leading other strands of EDI work.
The School became a Gender Action School in November. Mrs Wilson has set up a focus group of support and teaching staff and pupils to carry out a SWOT analysis and propose the priority areas of focus for EDI in relation to gender. This is particularly important as we move to becoming fully co-ed in September and because we want all pupils, including our Trans students, to feel no limitations in terms of roles and responsibilities and to feel fully included. She has pressed for a review of job titles and changes will be implemented to senior leadership and pastoral roles from September. She has established a confidential forum for female staff to meet and share their experiences and identify opportunities to improve gender inclusion at School.
Mrs Wilson has been able to positively impact the school community by engaging and empowering support and teaching staff and pupils and started to embed EDI in the culture of this traditional School. The pupil-led Inclusivity Committee has developed an anti-bullying charter via pupil and staff discussion groups and surveys. The Committee has also created an anti-racism charter, including feedback from different ethnic groups at the School.
Unity Society was a newly formed pupil group in September, aimed at supporting harmonious relationships across all ethnicities. Individual pupils requested to address the whole school regarding matters to do with race, discrimination, education and inclusion; one of the speeches is included below. They have invited two speakers via Zoom and met with Senior Leaders several times to share ideas and scrutinise our practices. They met Housemasters and Housemistresses to propose the rolling out of an EDI Prefect in every House, which was met with support for introduction from September.
Mrs Wilson is currently working on revising our anti-bullying strategy and engaging with pupils and staff to form focus groups to ensure that plans reflect the wishes and gain the support of the community.
The winners will be announced at the BSA's Annual Conference for Heads, which takes place virtually via Zoom on Tuesday and Wednesday, 4 and 5 May.