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Spotlight on Wales’ ‘ground-breaking’ anti-racism plans in FE

Jeremy Miles, Minister for Education and Welsh Language

Ahead of the Black Leadership Group’s conference tomorrow (21 March) on promoting racial equity, Jeremy Miles MS, Minister for Education and the Welsh Language, said further education had shown ‘great commitment and enthusiasm’ for making Wales an anti-racist nation by 2030.

Further education has shown ‘great commitment and enthusiasm’ for making Wales an anti-racist nation by 2030, said Wales’ Education Minister ahead of a conference on developments in tackling racism in the UK.

Jeremy Miles MS, Minister for Education and the Welsh Language, said progress had been made in the nation’s education sector but ‘there is still much more to do’ to achieve the ambitious and groundbreaking aim of eradicating racism nationwide.

Wales’ pioneering work to tackle racism will come under the spotlight tomorrow (21 March 2023) at the Black Leadership Group’s (BLG) third annual conference, Make the path by walking it. Among initiatives to be showcased include the Anti-racist Wales Action Plan and the creation of an anti-racist curriculum for the country.

Mr Miles said: “Our further education sector has shown great commitment and enthusiasm for making Wales an anti-racist nation by 2030. This is about more than avoiding racism. It’s about changing our policies, structures and the ways we work so that they actively seek to identify and combat inequalities based on race. We’re working with ColegauCymru and the Black Leadership Group to achieve this.”

The Welsh Government had committed over £1m to support the FE sector to develop anti-racist culture and practices in 2022-23, the Minister said.

“This has included the development of unique anti-racism blended learning modules designed for students in the FE sector, which will be launched in the next few months,” said Mr Miles. 

“We’ll also be extending the Diversity and Anti-Racist Professional Learning (DARPL) programme to FE, to ensure that staff at all levels have access to high quality professional learning to help them engage with anti-racist concepts and principles.”

Other initiatives, he said, included anti-racist action planning guidance for colleges, apprenticeship providers and adult learning providers, led by the Black Leadership Group.

“We must continue this work to make meaningful changes, so we’ve commissioned research on the lived experiences of learners and staff in FE, to help guide future work,” said Mr Miles.

“The Black Leadership Group’s annual conference provides a great opportunity to share our progress and challenges with a wide audience from across the UK, within and beyond the education sector. I’m proud to be able to celebrate our progress to date, while recognising that there is still much more to do.”

Sessions at the online conference include Anti-racist Wales 2030: a national vision, and Anti-racist Wales leading the way: Crafting an Authentic Anti-racist Curriculum.

Stella Ngozi Mbubaegbu CBE, Director of Black Leadership Group UK, said:

“It has been fantastic to see the Welsh Government take serious steps to decisively tackle the issues within further education and across society in Wales more broadly. We’ve said it before, but we continue to be impressed by the focus on anti-racism and the need for action rather than just words.

“We were particularly pleased to see further work between the Black Leadership Group and ColegauCymru in the Anti-Racist Action Plan last year, and since then we have continued to make progress to achieve our common aim. Tomorrow’s conference gives us the opportunity to showcase this and other excellent, ground-breaking work being undertaken in Wales.”

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