Isle of Man teaching of race-related issues to be reviewed – BBC News

A review will take place of how race and discrimination issues are taught in Manx schools, a minister has said.

In June, campaign group The Hardy Commission (THC) said schools should not “shy away” from teaching about the island’s links to the slave trade.

Education minister Alex Allinson said a summer audit would “establish what was taught” and find any gaps “in the content or the nature of topics”.

THC’s Vinci Pabellan said a review was “a great approach to take”.

“It will allow us to measure the extent of things,” he added.

“The survey is a good idea because speaking to the students will allow the department to find out which voices are under-represented and which are over-represented, and to balance that.”

Currently, schools on the island are free to decide what aspects of Manx history and topics of race and discrimination are included in lessons.

Dr Allinson’s announcement came as Tynwald took part in a two-hour general debate about racism on the island.

The education minister said following THC’s comments and a Black Lives Matter protest march in Douglas in June, there had been an “increased awareness… about race and racial discrimination”.

He said the “holistic” review would look at the teaching, the “attitudes” of schools and the way “racial discrimination is dealt with if it occurs with our pupils”.

There had been “some fantastic work right across the school sector”, so the aim was to “share that basis of practice and really move forward together”, he said.

“A just, equal education has to be the best education for our young people.”

Dr Allinson added that his department was “really quite keen… to make sure that our classrooms and schools are a safe place for everyone, where their voice is heard”.

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