Discriminate against white teachers to ensure ‘ethnic mix’, says Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw

The Telegraph is reporting that Sir Michael Wilshaw has suggested schools should be encouraged to discriminate against white teachers to ensure an “ethnic mix” of staff…

Sir Michael Wilshaw said the teaching body recruited by any school needed to provide a “fair representation” of pupils.

Where a school has a particularly high proportion of pupils from different ethnic minorities, “it is important to have a staff which reflects that”, he said.

Sir Michael’s comments came in a radio phone-in on LBC during which he was challenged by a mother from Gravesend in Kent who said her mixed race children were taught in a grammar school by “predominantly white” teachers.

“The teaching staff are predominantly white and the students are predominantly black,” said the caller, identifying herself only as Carol.

“That’s not equal representation of staff to students and that’s a problem that my children learn from predominantly white British liberals and not from other races and other cultures.”

Sir Michael said: “I’ve always worked in inner city environments with youngsters of different ethnic backgrounds and I always felt it was important to try and get a staff mix in that sort of environment.

“If I had two people applying for a job of equal merit and I felt that we needed to increase the number of teachers from ethnic minorities from that background … then I would apply positive discrimination, as long as the two people were of equal merit.

“I think there needs to be a fair representation. If the ethnic mix is very diverse it is important to have a staff which reflects that…”

More at: Discriminate against white teachers to ensure ‘ethnic mix’, says Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw

 

Positive discrimination is not actually allowed under equality legislation but is Sir Michael right to suggest it might have a role to play, especially in schools where the staff do not reflect the makeup of the student body? Please let us know in the comments or via Twitter…

 

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Comments

  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Wilshaw going maverick again. If TristramHuntMP want to depoliticise Ofsted upon election he’ll have a tough job

  2. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove A typical Wilshaw statement designed to fill up his scrapbook of press cuttings rather than help schools/teachers in any way

  3. andylutwyche

    “h_emoney: andylutwyche SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP He’s definitely got a point.” Never said he didn’t! Some things better left unsaid

  4. andrew_1910

    andylutwyche h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP More than political, with Wilshaw it’s all about him & what HE did. Personal cult?

  5. andrew_1910

    andylutwyche h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP More than political, with Wilshaw it’s all about him & what HE did. Personal cult?

  6. Cherie59789095

    SchoolsImprove Another way 2 view this is having mixed tchg staff helps dev culturally responsive pedagogy needed in multiethnic classes

  7. Janet2

    So-called ‘positive discrimination’ fuels the perception that those recruited under the scheme are ‘token’ specimens even when recruited on merit.

  8. MadgeJesss

    SchoolsImprove I am amazed he’s making this illegal suggestion. Schools need to select the best applicant. That’s it.

  9. andrew_1910

    andylutwyche h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP We could start a new religion on lines of 7th Day Adventists: Day Before Wilshavians

  10. andylutwyche

    andrew_1910 h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP I’m in! Which day of the week should we choose to celebrate?

  11. andrew_1910

    andylutwyche h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP 6 major days each year starting at dusk on the Wed before each holiday?

  12. andylutwyche

    andrew_1910 h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP Good idea – we could go half termly and pile the pressure of worship upon followers

  13. andylutwyche

    andrew_1910 h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP Good idea – we could go half termly and pile the pressure of worship upon followers

  14. andylutwyche

    andrew_1910 h_emoney SchoolsImprove TristramHuntMP Good idea – we could go half termly and pile the pressure of worship upon followers

  15. edujdw

    SchoolsImprove I don’t think he meant positive discrimination. He’s thinking about exercising a particular choice, all things being equal.

  16. SchoolsImprove

    edujdw He does say “if of equal merit” but also uses the expression positive discrimination (which is not allowed).

  17. SchoolsImprove

    edujdw He does say “if of equal merit” but also uses the expression positive discrimination (which is not allowed).

  18. edujdw

    SchoolsImprove so really he means positive action. Quite different. He’s used the wrong term. He should know better.

  19. GregoryTeaching

    SchoolsImprove why can’t the best candidate for the job be given it? Is ethnicity that big a deal in ‘multicultural’ Britain?

  20. GregoryTeaching

    SchoolsImprove why can’t the best candidate for the job be given it? Is ethnicity that big a deal in ‘multicultural’ Britain?

  21. GregoryTeaching

    SchoolsImprove why can’t the best candidate for the job be given it? Is ethnicity that big a deal in ‘multicultural’ Britain?

  22. GregoryTeaching

    SchoolsImprove why can’t the best candidate for the job be given it? Is ethnicity that big a deal in ‘multicultural’ Britain?

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