Www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Lightening Input on “Why Religion and Belief Equality Matters and What HEIs Can do About It” Higher Education.

Download Www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Lightening Input on “Why Religion and Belief Equality Matters and What HEIs Can do About It” Higher Education.

Post on 27-Dec-2015

212 views

Category:

Documents

0 download

TRANSCRIPT

  • Slide 1
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Lightening Input on Why Religion and Belief Equality Matters and What HEIs Can do About It Higher Education Funding Council for England Religious Literacy in Higher Education Leadership Workshop Friday 22 nd October City University, London By Paul Weller Professor of Inter-Religious Relations University of Derby
  • Slide 2
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Does Religion and Belief Equality Matter And Do Universities Do Anything About It? A Changing Scene Sophie Gilliat-Ray: Issues of religion and higher education hit the headlines.very rarely: more usually the religious and spiritual lives of academic staff and students go unnoticed, even within the universities themselves. But Gilliat-Ray also went on to note that, The outbreak of disturbances between different religious groups on campuses does occasionally, however, subvert the normal lack of interest. [Gilliat-Ray, S. (2000), Religion in Higher Education: The Politics of the Multi-Faith Campus, Ashgate, Aldershot, p. 1]
  • Slide 3
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Inclusiveness in religion and belief is a matter of justice and equity for HEI staff and students HEIs need legal compliance and good practice in relation to religion and belief for their own benefit Basic Principles for Why Religion and Belief Equality Matters and What HEIs Can Do About It
  • Slide 4
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES
  • Slide 5
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religious Discrimination in England & Wales Research (1999-2001): Key Findings consistently higher levels of unfair treatment were reported by Muslims than by most other groups, with such unfair treatment more often being frequent rather than occasional. religious groups with a large proportion of visible minorities, particularly Muslims, identified problems also with the policies and practices of organisations. numerically smaller groups often felt their existence goes unrecognised by educational institutions, policy makers and service providers even where these work hard to include majority-minorities.
  • Slide 6
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religious Discrimination in England & Wales (1999-2001): Key H.E. Findings in general, the highest reported incidence of unfair treatment in relation to universities and colleges was from the attitudes and behaviour of students. substantial levels of unfair treatment were also reported in relation to the attitudes and behaviour of staff. comparatively less unfair treatment was reported from the practices of universities and colleges, and even less from university and college policies.
  • Slide 7
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religious Discrimination in England & Wales Research (1999-2001): Cited Examples Cited examples of unfair treatment in Universities and Colleges included the following: dress (Hindus) teaching curriculum (Muslims, Zoroastrians) timetables (Jews, Muslims) holidays (Jews, Muslims) As one interviewee observed re religious holidays and festivals: I dont understand. These are even education institutions. The holidays are even printed on calendars now.
  • Slide 8
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES
  • Slide 9
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religion and Belief, Discrimination and Equality in England & Wales Project URL http://www.derby.ac.uk/religion-and-society
  • Slide 10
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES
  • Slide 11
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religion and Belief in Higher Education Project URL http://www.derby.ac.uk/religion-and-belief-in-HE
  • Slide 12
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religion and Belief in Higher Education Research Project Thematic Area 1: Participation and Disclosure
  • Slide 13
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Thematic Area 1: Participation and Disclosure Rationales and Research Questions People of diverse backgrounds need to feel safe in HEIs Do HEIs/SUs promote good relations between religion/belief groups? HEIs/SUs should be zones in which respectfully robust debate is possible Can religion and belief groups freely express their views within the law? Organisational tone and leadership orientation is key to progress Do staff/students experience HEIs as seeing their religion or belief as mainly connected with problems, benefits or as a matter of indifference? For organisational approaches and progress benchmarking data is needed Are staff/students content for religion/belief monitoring to take place?
  • Slide 14
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religion and Belief in Higher Education Thematic Area 2: Accommodating Different Religious Observances
  • Slide 15
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Thematic Area 2: Accommodating Different Religious Observances Rationales and Research Questions The ability to manifest religious freedom is key to its practical meaning How far do HEIs make provision for staff/student religious worship/meeting? Staff/students need to be able to participate in HEI events with integrity How inclusive (re religion & belief) are HEI/SU institutional events? The use of contracted time is key to staff religious observance in HEIs How do HEIs respond to staff time requests re religious observance? Fair assessment lies at the heart of student experience in HEIs What do HEIs do re assessment taking account of student observance?
  • Slide 16
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Religion and Belief in Higher Education Thematic Area 3: Discrimination and Harassment Relating to Religion and Belief
  • Slide 17
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Thematic Area 3: Discrimination and Harassment Relating to Religion & Belief Rationales and Research Questions Inclusive institutions are better recruiters of both staff and students What barriers re religion/belief do staff/students encounter in HEIs/SUs? Unexamined policies/practices are as big a problem as direct discrimination Do HEI/SU staff/students know how to address religion/belief discrimination? Regular mechanisms enable good communication and engagement Do faith/belief groups contribute to HEI/SU policy/practice development? Religion/belief related harassment should be taken as seriously as extremism From where do HEIs/SUs draw for expertise on how to deal with harassment?
  • Slide 18
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Issue Recognition and Pandoras Box .theres an element of a Pandoras box whereby even though the staff should feel empowered, there is the fear that if you recognise the diversity of the staff they will start asking for unmeetable demands .whats missing are the practical steps, plans of actions and guidance for taking those steps; establishing a way of accommodating differences and needs they are coming to understand Quotations from respondents in the Religious Discrimination in England and Wales Research (1999-2001)
  • Slide 19
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES What Can be Done: Laws, Policies, Codes of Practice, Data, Peer Pressure You need to make people aware, to have access to information, but you also need a way of making such things not optional - establishing these as key responsibilities is key; thats possibly where the law comes in.but once you establish an obligation you need to establish a way of following up by providing resources and guidance. You need reporting, bench-marking data, peer group pressure. Quotations from respondents in the Religious Discrimination in England and Wales Research (1999-2001)
  • Slide 20
  • www.derby.ac.uk EDUCATION, HEALTH AND SCIENCES Thank You For Listening Over to you!

Recommended

View more >