SHC 33 Equality and Diversity

SHC 33 Equality and Diversity

Equality and diversity. Every childcare setting and educational establishments will have equality and diversity policies and procedures in place. It is important to understand the meaning of equality, diversity, inclusion and discrimination.

Definition of Equality, inclusion, prejudice and discrimination in the context of childcare

Feature Definition Examples of promoting diversity in childcare setting Give other examples
Diversity Valuing and respecting differences between individuals and groups of people:

Culture, religion, language, food, skin tones, abilities and special needs.
Celebrate different religious festivals: Xmas, Hannuka, Diwali, Eid etc.

Consider kids physical needs, size and height: have child size tables and chairs.

Have dolls of different skin tones to reflect the multicultural society.


Equality Treating people fairly and giving them equal chances to support their lives.

Understand people are unique and treat them fairly by accommodating their individual needs.

Children in schools and care setting are given chances to engage in activities to promote learning and development.

Allow girls to play with cars and boys to play with dolls.

Toilets for disabled children.

Have dolls of different skin tones to reflect the multicultural society.

Have sand and spade activity on the table for a child in a wheel chair.

Using sign language and pictures to tell a story to a child who is hard of hearing.


Inclusion Ensuring everyone has access to participation no one is excluded.

Removing barriers to allow access to everyone to engage in activities or learning.

Ensuring that everyone has a sense of belonging by feeling respected, valued and knowing you have the support from others to achieve personal potential.

Ensuring support is given to people with special needs.

Ensure that activities and games are designed to encourage everyone to engage and does not discriminate against disability or language.

Have sand and spade activity on the table for a child in a wheel chair.

Using translators to communicate with children who speak little or no English.

Incorporate music, food, stories from a range of culture.

E. g. Ali and his cats, Natalina in Poland,
Mangoes for snack or playing the Sitar.


Prejudice Making unfair judgement about person or group of people without knowing the facts. Stereo - typing people based on their culture, religion or ability.

Vegetarians only eat vegetables.

Disables people are not able to work.


Discrimination Treating someone more or less favourably than other people.

Recruiting more male than women in the army or police force.

Laying off part-time workers.
Not allowing girls to play with trains and not allowing boys to play with dolls.

Not involving disabled children to participate in sport activities.


Types of discrimination

Type of discrimination Examples Give another example
Gender Not allowing boys to cook or girls to play football.


Race Refusing to enrol children in the nursery from different cultural background.


Disability Failing to provide disabled toilets or wheel ramps in the premises.


Age Having bicycles or slides in the setting for older children only.


Religion Not allowing girls from certain religious group to cover their bodies modestly for P.E or sport activity.


Sexual orientation Not inviting homo sexual parents to events in schools or nursery settings.


Direct discrimination

Direct discrimination happens when a person or a group of people are treated less favourably than others; it can be either deliberate or unintentional.


  • If a driving job was only open to male applicants.

  • Paying men more than women for doing the same job.

  • Coach driver refusing to take a disabled child on a school trip.

Indirect discrimination

Indirect discrimination occurs when a person or a group of people is disadvantaged more than another; it can be either deliberate or unintentional.


  • Fewer male teachers are recruited in primary schools.
  • Seldom men are recruited as practitioners in childcare settings.
  • Absence of ramps or disabled toilets for the disabled people.
  • Failure to provide suitable resources to promote language development in children from a different culture /country.

Legislations and government initiatives that protect
people from discrimination:

Sex Discrimination Act 1975 and 1986

The Race Relations Act 1976 (Amendment 2000)

Disability Discrimination Act 1995 and 2005

Special Education Needs and Disability Act 2001

Code of Practice for Special Educational Needs 2001

Human Rights Act 1998

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989)

Children Act 2004

Every Child Matters

Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

Ideas to Support Children's Participation

  • Use pictures, gestures and symbols to facilitate meaningful participation of children learning English or for those hard of hearing.

  • Use special resources to stimulate children with sensory impairment.

  • Include activities such as art, music or dancing which do not require speech, but allows children to fully engage.

  • Celebrate all children's achievement.

  • Create opportunities to expose children to diversity, for example trips to museums, theatre or cultural cuisine.

Can you think of any other ideas to support children's participation?


DFE (2014) Development Matters in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

DFE (2014). Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage

DEF(2014). Early years (under 5s) foundation stage framework (EYFS)

DFE (2014) Keeping children safe in Out of hours provisions

DFE(2014) Early Years Outcomes

Parents - guide to EYFS (2014)

What to expect and when (2014)

The British Association for Early Childhood Education
(Supported by DFE)

Every Child Matters 2003)

Effective Pre-school and Primary Education 3-11 Project (2003-2008)

DFE (2008) Effective Pre-School and Primary Education 3-11 Project (EPPE 3-11)

Parliament (2003) Every Child Matters

Tassoni et al (2010) Level 3 Diploma Children and Young People's
Workforce (Early Learning and Childcare). Pearson: Harlow Essex

Caroline Meggit et al (2011) CACHE Level 3 Children and Young People's
Workforce Diploma: Early Learning and Child Care.
Hodder Education: London