Virtual Open Morning!!: We'll be holding a Virtual Open morning on Saturday 7th November live from 9:30am! More info here! »
This is a story that brings together democracy, equality, writing for a purpose and the power of persuasion and it all begins with a girl in Year 4… A few weeks ago a letter was placed into the postbox that is outside Mr Payne’s office. We introduced this red beauty earlier this year to try and find more reasons for the children to write independently for fun; for a purpose. Mr Payne reads each letter in the box and replies to them all and already the children have been successful in changing aspects of our school practice – as you can read in this historic post here. So, the letter that began this story is pictured below:
It was one of those moments when a child asks a question and you realise that you don’t really have a satisfactory answer, so I composed a reply…
I sat and waited for the response, rather excited by what might come of this small action in pursuit of equality. I didn’t have to wait long… A day later, the girl in question came bounding into my office with three pages of A4 and a barrage of words to explain the research she had done, the information she had found out, email responses she had received, the suggested new wording for the policy and questions about when we would be able to make a decision. See below one of the pages of her presentation:
And so it was that last Monday night (19th June), during the resources meeting of the governing body, I presented the proposals and the background to the story. The governors examined the letters and the research information and could find no fault or area of disagreement and as a consequence, a change to the academy’s uniform policy was approved unanimously. A new letter had to be written…
This is a good news story… It is a story where the protagonist is a young girl who saw inequality and felt that she would like to do something about it. It underlines our true belief that we are all responsible for our community and that we all have the power to change things for the better. It demonstrates that writing has a purpose and can be used to good effect for personal benefit. It shows that democracy is a good thing and that when everyone has a voice things can change in a positive way. Most importantly, it now means that the St. James’ Primary Academy’s uniform policy is changed as of this moment (you’ll see the wording is exactly the same as suggested by our young campaigner…) and girls are now able to opt to wear shorts as one choice for their uniform. Cue one happy campaigner, who becomes the first girl in our academy to come into school wearing her new shorts.