Fife Centre for Equalities (FCE) worked with Active Schools Fife to ensure their leadership programmes were accessible to all young people
Active Schools Fife continue their equality journey to become the first organisation in Fife to gain the Equality Pathfinder Silver Award.
Following Equality Pathfinder training with Fife Centre for Equalities, Active Schools Fife decided to focus on the challenge of making their young leadership programmes accessible to all young people in all Fife schools and that the opportunities and recruitment practices promoted equality and diversity for all.
Active Schools Fife offers young people a range of opportunities to gain experience and skills in leadership through roles as ambassadors, coaches/deliverers, technical officials, event/competition organisers and decision makers.
The roles offered give participants great opportunities to become directly engaged in promoting sport and motivating other young people to get involved in sport via a wide range of settings within their local communities. Pupils involved with coaching also have the opportunity to take part in a programme to gain experience through an international coaching placement.
These are valuable experiences for young people to help their employment prospects and applications to further and higher education institutions. However, the programmes needed to update their Equal Opportunities monitoring in order to evidence and gauge how fairly the opportunities were allocated year in year out.
As their Silver Equality Challenge, the Active Schools Fife team decided to update their recruitment practice to make sure there was a fair gender balance and also to make sure that literacy skills were not a barrier for applicants who had the potential to be effective young leaders.
The new recruitment practices put in place for the Silver Award assesses pupils through an informal interview, how they deal practically with a task and how they work with other people and on their own. It gives young people the chance to demonstrate their skills, even if they struggle in one section, they can do very well in another.
The team at Active School Fife described that they felt that this was a better process that gave all pupils a greater opportunity to compete for a place on the programme.
Reflecting on their learning and experiences of working on the equality challenge this past year, the team mentioned how “we learned more about equality and positive action, and that by trying to increase groups of individuals from one characteristic may result in us unfairly discriminating against another”.
“We had to ensure our processes remained robust and that places on our programmes were allocated on merit”.
This reflects FCE’s approach to equality and diversity by using evidence and addressing fairly barriers to equality of opportunity in every day work practice.
Nina Munday, Manager of Fife Centre for Equalities says:
“I would like to congratulate and commend Active Schools Fife to be the first organisation to gain the Equality Pathfinder Silver Award. Over the past year, they have been working hard with young people and staff to improve their ambassador recruitment process. Now all young people with excellent leadership qualities will be able to take advantage of the ambassador programme”
Andrew Baird, Senior Active Schools Coordinator says:
“The Equality Pathfinders workshop provided an opportunity for us to review and discuss how we were working with and recruiting young people in our leadership programmes from a different perspective.
“We are committed to supporting our young people and the workshop was the catalyst to taking on the Equality Challenge. The challenge process along with the support and guidance from Fife Centre for Equalities enabled us to improve our recruitment processes and practices ensuring our leadership programmes are inclusive and accessible for our young people whilst promoting equality and diversity.”
Read the detailed Equality Challenge Case Study by clicking here and find our more about getting involved with our Equality Pathfinders Awards scheme at: