Equality Policy


1     Purpose of the policy

Mulberry UTC is an inclusive school in a diverse and thriving community. We are proud to celebrate this diversity and to champion equality.  

Every student, staff member, parent/carer and all other members of the UTC’s community are valued and respected. We aim to embed the values and ethos that will develop individuals to become positive, respectful and successful citizens within the community and throughout their lives. We are committed to overcoming disadvantage, tackling discrimination and fostering positive relationships.

This policy sets out how Mulberry UTC meets these aims and supports all students and staff in achieving their potential academically, professionally and personally. It also explains how the school is meeting its Public Sector Duty to promote equality as defined within the Equality Act 2010.  

2      Public Sector Equality Duty

The Public Sector Equality Duty is made up of a general equality duty and two specific duties. The general duty requires us to have due regard for the need to: 

  1. eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation and any other conduct that is prohibited by or under the Act;
  2. advance equality of opportunity between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
  3. foster good relations between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not share it.

The Act defines protected characteristics as:

  • age[1].
  • sex
  • race
  • disability
  • religion or belief
  • sexual orientation
  • gender reassignment
  • pregnancy or maternity
  • marriage and civil partnership status

It is unlawful for the UTC to discriminate against a student or prospective student, staff member or prospective staff member, by treating them less favourably because of one or more of these characteristics1 

The Act’s two specific duties require us to:

  1. publish information to show compliance with the Equality Duty;
  2. publish Equality Objectives at least every 4 years which are specific and measurable.

3     Principles

Mulberry UTC fully embraces the Equality Duty both in law and in spirit. In order to fulfil its obligations in this area, the UTC is guided by the following principles.

  • All students, staff and members of the wider school community are of equal value regardless of their background or whether they share one or more of the ‘protected characteristics’.
  • We recognise and respect difference and challenge prejudice and discrimination. Treating people equally does not necessarily involve treating people the same, and our policies, procedures and practices take account of differences in background, culture, ethnicity, religion, sex, sexual orientation and gender assignment.
  • We foster and promote positive attitudes and relationships, and a shared sense of cohesion and community. Our policies, procedures and practices promote inclusion, positive interaction and mutual respect. Bullying and harassment of any kind is never tolerated.
  • We are consultative in our practices; appropriately involving and engaging members of the school community when change is proposed.
  • Our staff are specifically trained in Equality and Diversity Awareness.

4     Implementation

  • UTC staff consider equality implications before they develop policy and take decisions, not as an afterthought, and they keep all policy under review on a continuing basis. The Equality Duty is integrated into all the UTC’s functions, and the monitoring and analysis necessary to comply with the duty is carried out seriously, rigorously and with an open mind.
  • Our admissions and recruitment arrangements are fair, transparent and informed by clear guidance so that there is no risk of discrimination. We maintain an accurate record, when possible and appropriate, of the protected characteristics of our students, employees, UTC Local Governing Body members, Trustees and applicants for jobs. This data ensures we know the needs of our school population well and informs our Equality Objectives, planning and monitoring focuses. Appendices A and B give the current context in relation to UTC students and employees.
  • We strive to narrow all gaps in achievement affecting students from particular cultural and ethnic backgrounds, those who belong to lower-income households, who have a disability or who have special educational needs. We aim to provide appropriate and varied learning, teaching and support to ensure all students make excellent progress regardless of their needs, dispositions, aptitudes or circumstances. We collect data and monitor progress and outcomes of different groups of students, which prompts action to close any achievement gaps that become evident.We publish an analysis of standards reached by different groups at the end of each key stage.
  • We closely monitor data on absence from school and exclusions for evidence of over-representation of different groups and take action promptly to address concerns.
  • We actively promote equality and diversity though the curriculum, particularly through abroad and challenging Personal Social and Health Education programme. We endeavour to present diversity through our displays, resources, events, contributors and role models. We provide opportunities for students to listen to a range of opinions, empathise with different experiences and to engage in social action. We are alert and proactive about the potentially damaging impact of negative language in matters such as race, gender, disability and sexuality.
  • Our focus extends beyond academic success. Our students participate in innovative challenges and projects and, whatever their interest, passion or talent, we strive to ensure all students take part in initiatives involving esteemed national and global partners, universities and businesses. Monitoring allows us to target under-participating groups.
  • The UTC’s plan for the use of Pupil Premium funding enables us to counter the effects of disadvantage on progress and participation and, in particular, creates opportunities for students to broaden their experience.
  • Our Behaviour Management Policy outlines our expectations of both students and staff in their interactions with each other. Prejudice-related incidents are identified, recorded and dealt with, and reported to the UTC Local Governing Body. Through the Student Pledge, drawn up by the students and staff, students are encouraged to model the positive values of the UTC at school, at home and within their local community.
  • We recognise that people with disabilities may have different needs from those of who do not have a disability. This is always taken into account when developing and implementing decisions, policies and services and may lead to reasonable adjustments. A bi-annual Accessibility Audit helps us ensure the accessibility of our provision and facilities to students, staff and visitors.
  • Our Inclusion Policy aims to meet the needs of students with a learning difficulty or disability that calls for special educational provision. Our Examinations Policy sets out procedures relating to access arrangements that ensure all students have the opportunity to achieve to the best of their ability.
  • Our professional development programme for staff has a strong focus on equalities issues. It is also designed to ensure equality of access and a profile of participation that reflects the full staff community. We are attentive to the need to ensure that all staff gain from professional development and do not experience blocks to employment or promotion opportunities.
  • As an employer, we are committed to equal opportunities principles and we monitor and actively promote equality in all aspects of staffing and employment. We strive to eliminate discrimination and harassment. We observe good equalities practice in staff recruitment and retention and all appointments and promotions are made on the basis of merit and ability. We also aim to increase the extent to which staffing, in all roles and at all levels, reflects the diversity of our community. We have specific policies to address staff conduct, discipline, grievances and dignity at work.
  • The UTC’s Complaints Policy sets out the procedures through which we handle complaints, including those that relate to any experience or perception of inequality or discrimination, with the specific aim of facilitating prompt and, where possible, informal resolution that precludes the need for escalation.
  • We regularly gather feedback and responses from students, staff and parents on their experience of the UTC’s provision, practice and policy and endeavour to involve a wide-cross-section of our community in the school’s development and improvement.

5     Responsibilities

We expect all members of the school community and all visitors to support our commitment to equality and meeting the requirements of the Equality Act. We provide training, guidance and information to enable them to do this. 

The UTC Local Governing Body and the Trust Board are responsible for ensuring that the school complies with legislation, and that this policy and its related procedures and action plans are implemented. The Trust’s Committees keep relevant aspects of the UTC’s commitment to the Equality Duty under review.The Trust Board biennially reviews this policy and its impact.

The UTC Principal and Senior Leadership Team are responsible for maintaining an ethos in the school that upholds this policy and the Equality Duty. They are also responsible for ensuring this policy is understood and implemented by all staff and for making students and staff aware of its commitments and expectations. 

Leadership Team members are responsible for addressing the policy actively within their areas of responsibility and for collating and analysing relevant monitoring evidence.

All staff are responsible for acting on this policy consistently in their day-to-day professional responsibilities and for supporting students and their families to share the UTC’s commitment to equality.

6     Equality Objectives

Mulberry UTC has committed to the following over-arching objectives for equality. In line with the specific duty of the Equality Act 2010, these are translated into specific and measurable objectives relevant to current school improvement priorities at each review of this policy. These are included in Appendix C and feed forward into the School Improvement Plan.

The UTC commits to:

  • giving active consideration to equality issues, including the potential effects on different people when developing and implementing strategies, policies and procedures. This will include consulting appropriate groups within the UTC community to ensure due consideration is given to equality issues when developing policies and procedures.
  • ensuring appropriate training for those responsible for developing strategies, policies and procedures and putting them into practice, and ensuring such people are made aware of their obligations in relation to the Equality Duty. This UTC will ensure that all those with line management responsibilities receive an appropriate level of training to raise awareness of equality issues and all staff receive diversity awareness training.
  • empowering managers, workers and other relevant parties by providing appropriate and necessary information. For example, the UTC will ensure external job vacancies are accessible to all sectors of the community through transparent and open recruitment and selection processes, and through the provision of appropriate information to ensure all those with suitable skills feel able to apply.
  • monitoring and reviewing the impact of our policies and procedures, and taking appropriate corrective action where concerns are identified. Part of the purpose of monitoring and reviewing will be to ensure that policies and procedures are consistently and fairly applied. We will, for example, monitor continuing professional development for staff within the UTC to ensure it is accessible to all, based on professional needs that are consistent with the UTC’s aims, as well as monitoring student progress to ensure students are on track and receive the required level of support.
  • improving attendance of students from particular groups to ensure accessibility to an education, even if this means phasing a return or spending time in the inclusion section of the UTC before returning to the classroom. It will also involve working in partnership with students, parents/carers and other agencies as appropriate.
  • improving knowledge, skills and attitudes to enable students to appreciate and value difference and diversity, for example by increasing understanding between students from different faith communities.
  • reducing prejudice-related bullying the use of derogatory language in order to ensure the safety of all students and to encourage students to become citizens who demonstrate an understanding and appreciation of equality and diversity.
  • engagement with our students, parents and the wider community to ensure that we demonstrate our commitment to sharing the responsibility for raising well-educated and civic-minded students, as we feel this responsibility cannot rest solely with schools.

7     Disseminating the Policy

We ensure the whole school community knows about our commitment to equality through all relevant communications, interactions, practice and policy. 

This policy, including the Equality Objectives and data, is available on the school website and in the staff handbook, electronically and in hard copy.  Its principles, expectations and commitments are included in induction for new staff, students and parents and built into curriculum and extra-curricular activities for students and professional development for staff throughout the year.   

8     Monitoring the policy’s impact


As part of the UTC’s Self Evaluation, we collect the following information on our students:  

  • attainment and progress data,
  • attendance data,
  • exclusions,
  • sanctions and rewards,
  • involvement with extended learning opportunities,
  • involvement in intervention,
  • option choices,
  • parental engagement
  • progression from Y11 and Y13

Senior Leaders with responsibility for the above areas analyse this data routinely from an equality perspective in terms of: 

  • eligibility for Pupil Premium – a measure of disadvantage
  • ethnicity
  • prior attainment
  • SEN and disability,
  • sex
  • students with English as an additional language

Analysis after each attainment/progress data collection leads to short term action to adjust learning and teaching plans or to target support and intervention.  Analysis of end of year outcomes leads to specific areas for school-wide development built into the School Improvement Plan.

Analysis of the wider data sets above enables us to identify differences between groups, and over/under-represented groups. This leads to a review of possible causes and agreed action to address the issues.  This may be short term action or school-wide action built into the School Improvement Plan.  

The UTC monitors incidents of prejudice-related bullying or harassment amongst students through the procedures set out in the Anti-bullying Policy.  Incidents that have their basis in any of the protected characteristics are recorded specifically and reported in an annual summary.

The UTC also invites focused discussion, with students, parents and staff, on the students’ UTC experience in terms of their religion and belief, their sexual orientation and their gender identity.



In accordance with Employment Duty legislation, we collect equality information on:

  • applicants for employment
  • staff in post and on different pay scales/ grades/ points/ levels of leadership
  • participation in training
  • pay progression
  • internal promotion
  • accessing flexible working

The HR department analyses this data routinely with respect to: 

  • age
  • disability
  • ethnicity
  • marriage/civil partnership
  • religion/belief
  • sex

This analysis enables us to remove any blocks to, and/or target, under-represented groups and to identify and remove potentially discriminatory practice. 

The UTC also invites feedback from, and focussed discussion with, staff on their UTC experience in terms of their sexual orientation, gender identity and pregnancy/maternity.

The UTC monitors incidents of prejudice-related bullying or harassment of staff through the procedures set out in the Dignity at Work and Grievance policies.


Equality objectives

The specific Equality Objectives for this year (see Appendix C) are built into the School Improvement Plan.  Monitoring and evaluation processes are detailed there. 


An annual summary of all Equality monitoring and the actions that followed/will follow is presented to the Performance and Standards Committee.

9      Review of the Policy

This Equality Policy will be reviewed by the Trust Board after a year in the first instance and thereafter biennially. A monitoring report prepared by Senior Leaders will inform the review.  

In addition, progress towards the specific Equality Objectives in Appendix C will be monitored and evaluated as part of the School Improvement Plan.   

We have a rolling programme for reviewing all UTC policies and use the questions below to assess their potential impact on equality and diversity, so that we can ensure appropriate focus is given.

  • To what extent does the policy affect service users, employees or the wider community – and what is the significance of the impact?
  • Is it likely to affect people with particular protected characteristics differently?
  • Does the policy relate to functions that have been identified through engagement as being important to people with particular protected characteristics?
  • Does the policy relate to an area with known inequalities?
  • Does the policy relate to the UTC’s equality objectives?


APPENDIX A: UTC Context: Students

  1. This section aims to provide relevant information on the composition of the student population with specific relevance to their protected characteristics and other areas. Further information is being collected to provide an insight into the full scope of protected characteristics.
  2. Number of students on roll: 933
  3. Sex










4. Race (Ethnicity)




Subgroup Description



African Asian









Any other Asian background






African: Unspecified



Other Black African



Black Caribbean



Black Somali






Mixed: Asian and any other background



Mixed: Black and any other background



Other Mixed



Mixed: White and Asian



Mixed: White/Black African



Mixed: White/Black Caribbean



Mixed: White/Other



Arab Other






Latin/South/Central American






Other Ethnic Group



Any other ethnic background












White British



White English



White European



White Italian



Any other White background









Turkish/Turkish Cypriot

5. SEN




SEN Provision – Education, health and care plan


SEN Provision – SEN support


Total number of students with SEN 


No special educational needs 





6. Disability/SEN need type for students on roll with SEN


Number of Students


SPLD Specific Learning Difficulty


MLD Moderate Learning Difficulty


SLD Severe Learning Difficulty


SEMH Social, emotional and mental health


SLCN Speech, Language and Communication Needs


HI Hearing Impairment


VI Visual Impairment


PD Physical Disability


ASD Autistic Spectrum Disorder


OTH Other Difficulty / Disability





7. Bursary funding awarded to all 16-19 year olds

Sixth Form Details


Total students aged 16 and over


Awarded a discretionary bursary


Percentage of Sixth Form Population awarded a discretionary bursary


8. Other Student Groups

The below information provides further details on the following group of students:

Students with English as an additional language




Students with English as a first language


Students with English as an additional language







APPENDIX B: UTC Context: Employees

  • As the UTC employs less than 150 employees, there is no obligation to publish information about them. However, this section aims to provide relevant information on the composition of the employee population with specific relevance to their protected characteristics and other areas. Further information will be collected over time to provide an insight into the full scope of protected characteristics.
  • Number of employed staff:
  • Sex








  • Race (Ethnicity)

Ethnic Code 



Subgroup Description









Any other Asian background






African: Unspecified



Black Caribbean



Black Other



Mixed: Other background



Mixed: White and Asian



Mixed: White/Black Caribbean



Not known



Info not obtained



White British



White Irish



White Other





  • Disability

Employee Numbers


Employee with a disability


Employees with no disability


Information not obtained





APPENDIX C: Equality objectives 2017-20


Public Sector Equality Duty


Success criteria


Monitoring the impact 

Eliminate discrimination,

harassment and  victimisation 

Ensure equal representation of different groups, including both male and female, in the non-formal activities and opportunities in the UTC.

Highlight the importance of equality and antidiscrimination issues through awareness-raising initiatives, events and campaigns, led by students where possible.

tbc through the SIP process

tbc through the SIP process

tbc through the SIP process

Advance equality of opportunity between different groups

Ensure that achievement gaps between different student groups do not arise, by carefully monitoring the progress of all student groups, particularly those where issues exist nationally e.g. students with SEN.

Ensure a diverse teaching and non-teaching staff and leadership profile so that it is

representative of our community.

tbc through the SIP process

tbc through the SIP process

tbc through the SIP process

Foster good relations between different groups

Ensure the curriculum upholds our equality aims and principles, including a focus on resources, visible role models, access to and uptake of a range of enrichment and extra-curricular activities.

Introduce clear and consistent operational routines so that all students and staff experience a consistently respectful and calm environment and play their part in building excellent relationships

tbc through the SIP process

tbc through the SIP process

tbc through the SIP process

[1] Although a person’s age is a protected characteristic for adults, this does not apply to school students.

Date: June 2017

An electronic copy of this policy can be downloaded here: Equality Policy