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The School Defends Allowing Students To Kneel In Anti Racism Protest At The Outset Of A Sporting Event

Today, a school defended allowing students to kneel in an anti-racism protest at the opening of their sports day.
After ‘experiencing and witnessing racially motivated abuse online’ in the community following the Euro 2020 final on July 11, pupils and staff at Noel-Baker Academy in Alvaston, Derby, are alleged to have offered the idea.
However, one parent voiced concern that pupils would feel forced to participate in the gesture because of ‘peer pressure,’ while another thought they should have been informed beforehand.
Taking a knee has become a global symbol of resistance to racism, first earning international attention in American football when some players kneeled during the national anthem at the start of the game.
Following the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis in May of last year, the act is being performed as part of the Black Lives Matter movement.
During the Euro 2020 final on July 11, pupils and staff at Noel-Baker Academy in Alvaston, Derby, are reported to have offered the idea after ‘experiencing and witnessing racially motivated abuse online’ in the community.
‘As a result, the school council requested that we do something to underline our anti-racism stance and make it obvious that we are proudly anti-racist as a school community.’
‘Since then, we’ve held a series of morning assemblies every day, at the request of the staff and kids, in which we’ve tackled a variety of themes related to racism.’
‘This culminated today in sports day, when students and staff were given the option of linking arms, placing their hands on their hearts, kneeling, or just taking a minute of silence to reflect on the great diversity of our world and stand united against racism.’
‘The choice of action or gesture was fully up to kids and staff alike, and it was simply about standing united as one community against prejudice or discrimination,’ one parent who did not want to be identified said he did not believe it was appropriate to encourage youngsters, who may not have all of the information necessary to make an informed decision, to make gestures on the subject.
‘Peer pressure could make kids participate even if they don’t want to,’ the father noted.
‘I think the school should have told us what was going on so we could have made our own judgments on the matter,’ another parent claimed. A street artist restores the mural of England star Marcus Rashford in Manchester after it was damaged with a racist message after England lost the Euro 2020 final match against Italy Local ward councillor Alan Graves Snr said that several parents told him they were upset because their children were being bullied at school.
‘The actual issue here is the peer pressure that young people are put under to do something they may not agree with,’ he said.
‘This effectively means that the same individuals they rely on to educate them will bully them.’
One must wonder why a school would recommend something that is contentious among students.
‘This is brainwashing, and it promotes racism, which the institution claims to condemn.’
‘It’s one thing when adults make these decisions, but putting such pressure on children is not healthy for the society we all live in,’ the school’s PE department stated online ahead of Tuesday’s sports day: ‘Make ensure students have lots of drink, sun cream, and a hat if necessary to keep cool tomorrow during sports day,’ parents commented on social media.
‘Make ensure pupils have lots of water, sun cream, and a hat if necessary to stay cool tomorrow during sports day,’ the school’s PE department stated online ahead of Tuesday. ‘Temperature is predicted to be approximately 27C,’ the school spokesman added.
‘Due to the weather, all parents have been urged to send their children with lots of sunscreen, sun hats, and refillable water bottles.’ ‘We also erected gazebos around the site for additional shade and offered covered spots for students to relax in when they weren’t participating in sports activities.’

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