Well I must confess to being gob-smacked by the Headteacher's incredible insensitivity and arrogance towards a very serious issue. The fact that no-one has ever complained before doesn't mean there isn't anything wrong. More often than not people don't complain because they are afraid to do so, maybe as I am beginning to find out there might be reprisals, or perhaps because they feel that nothing will happen. His arrogant assumption that he will entertain no further complaints about the sign reminds me of Pride Coming Before a Fall. Because like it or not the Headteacher of the Foreland School is accountable to other organisations and he will have to answer to them for his actions.
Lets begin with the Commission for Equality and Human Rights . This organisation is responsible for policing the Equalities Act 2010 and the Public Sector Equality Duty which forms part of the Act. The Public Sector Duty requires that Foreland School should
Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
It could be argued that the prominent display of a sign which uses terminology which is universally accepted to be demeaning, insulting and abusive towards disabled people, in a school used exclusively disabled students runs contrary to the spirit of Public Sector Duty. This is something I looking into.
I also think that the Leader of Kent County Council and KCCs Cabinet Member for Education may well have something say about this unacceptable situation which threatens to bring the Foreland school into disrepute.
I have been in touch with SCOPE to seek their guidance and will be contacting disability campaign groups to seek their support.
The bottom line is this - we have a Headteacher of a special needs school who is charged with supporting and developing the educational emotional and social needs of vulnerable disabled children, who thinks that it's perfectly acceptable to have a prominent notice in his school which uses language which demeans and insults his disabled students. This cannot be morally right! In fact its downright distasteful and improper. I think that this Headteacher simply doesn't get it. Perhaps he might be better employed working for the Government's disability benefit assessors ATOS.