School bans pencil cases to stop ‘stigma’

Image caption Pauline Johnstone has prohibited pencil cases at St Wilfrid’s Primary School in Blyth

The school has banned pencil situations in a bid to stop pupils through poor families being stigmatised.

St Wilfrid’s Primary College in Blyth, Northumberland, said this had taken steps to get rid of any kind of “designer goods”.

Mind teacher Pauline Johnstone said pen cases have been banned “so there is comparison on the tables and youngsters are learning”.

St Wilfrid’s was among more than 100 colleges in a project to stop poorer students being stigmatised.

Right after working with charity Children North Eastern, the school has begun providing stationery and it has cut down on the number of dress-up and fundraising days.

“There was obviously a culture within the school, within students, that noticed those children who had been never in on PE times for example , ” Ms Johnstone stated.

“Part of our consistent policy is a standard backpack and we don’t have any designer goods. ”

She said some moms and dads complained about having to buy specific bags but enough time was remaining before the rule was fully unplaned.

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Image caption St Wilfrid’s Primary School within Blyth took part in the Low income Proofing the School Day project

The Low income Proofing the School Day project, brought by Children North East, urged teachers to look at ways in which some students might be unwittingly excluded.

Schools said it has led to increased attendance and better results.

The charity also said “dress-up” days or conversations about “what we did at the weekend” may also penalise those from low-income skills.

It said educational institutions also found more discreet ways of disseminating free school uniforms as mother and father and children were reluctant in order to approach them directly.

Image caption Jason, 14, attends Burnside University which has taken part in the task

Students at Burnside College in Wallsend, North Tyneside, said not having the particular “right stuff” caused “pressure” and may lead to bullying.

Jerrika, 14, added: “If you don’t have the particular expensive stuff people will contact you things like tramp, which isn’t really right. ”

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Harris, 15, said: “There was a true big issue with some people, it really have got to them. There was a really big interpersonal expectation to have the best things plus it was affecting school life for a number of people.

“There has been groups created around who acquired the best things but I think which has been taken away. That’s not an issue anymore. inch

Picture caption Harris, 15, stated the pressure to have the best details has been taken away

Children North East offers “poverty proofed” schools across Teesside, Tyne and Wear and Northumberland, as well as schools in Grimsby plus Brighton which have requested the task.

Chief executive Jeremy Cripps said the project had enhanced behaviour and helped more students take part in extra-curricular activities.

“The government is constantly saying that the way in which out of poverty is educational accomplishment and by that they mean doing well at school exams and ideally going on to more education, ” he added.

“But if you’re not joining with it to start with you really haven’t obtained a chance to take advantage of all that education. inch

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