Unfortunately some children, at some point in their life will experience some form of discrimination. This could be anything from being called names because they wear glasses or being shunned in the playground because they aren’t wearing the latest fashion in coats or trainers. Sadly as children become young people this could also grow into discrimination due to their race, colour or even sexual preferences.
Whatever the age and whatever the reason, the impact and effect of discrimination and prejudice on children and young people can be extreme and can also have far reaching consequences for the sufferers – even following them into adulthood.
Discrimination experience falls into 2 categories:
This is when children are unable to participate in school curriculum or activities because their disability, race or gender is not catered for. Such as not getting a place at school or in an extra-curricular club because they have Special Education Needs or not being allowed to observe an important date or celebration in their culture. This would also include other children excluding someone from their group because of that child’s race, colour or any other difference. Such as a group of children playing ring-o-roses not letting someone join in because their hands are dirty or a child not being picked for a team in P.E because they don’t run very fast or cannot catch a ball easily.
This can be a less obvious form of discrimination and can come from a lack of thought when deciding practices and procedures. This would mean that a child would not be deliberately excluded from an activity but would be unable to participate due to their personal circumstances – whether that is a wheelchair user unable to climb into a visiting fire engine or a Muslim child being unable to join in a food tasting session involving sausages.
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