Star Academies commemorates Stephen Lawrence
Across the country, Star Academies’ schools have participated in the inaugural Stephen Lawrence Day to commemorate his death and recognise the importance of respecting diversity, equality and inclusion.
Star schools marked the day by facilitating a series of activities to enable pupils to learn about Stephen Lawrence’s life and legacy, and to explore themes including racism and discrimination in our society.
Pupils at Highfield Leadership Academy in Blackpool reflected upon how they view themselves and how others view them, before exploring what prejudice and discrimination are and then relating this to their own personal experiences.
The school’s Anti-Bullying Ambassadors developed part of this work by connecting their Culture of Kindness campaign and work about being an ‘upstander’ to the Stephen Lawrence Day theme of ‘Live your Best Life’. During Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) lessons, Highfield pupils made pledges to commit to spreading kindness and demonstrated how they would be ‘upstanders’ by pledging to stand up against prejudice and discrimination.
The Highfield Ambassadors’ researched the new 18-mile marker at the London Marathon, which has been designed by young architects to motivate runners at one of the toughest sections of the course. Pupils discovered that the marker, titled ‘Because of Stephen We Can’, celebrates the life and legacy of Stephen and incorporated brightly coloured plaques and quotes from young people describing the personal impact that Stephen’s life and legacy has had on them. The significance of the commemorative structure appearing at mile 18 of the course was representative of Stephen’s age when he was murdered.
As a result of their research, the secondary pupils wanted to raise further awareness of Stephen Lawrence Day and organised their own 18-mile challenge to link with Stephen’s 18-mile marathon marker. The Anti-Bullying Ambassadors, along with teachers, each completed a mile run. Together they ran a total of 18 miles in honour of Stephen’s memory and his family’s work.
In Blackburn, pupils at The Olive School took part in a commemorative assembly to reflect on Stephen’s life and to inspire the children to live their best life.
The national day of commemoration took place on 22 April 2019, which was the 26th anniversary of Stephen’s death. The event is coordinated by the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust, which was founded by Stephen’s mother, Baroness Lawrence.
Stephen Lawrence Day aims to:
- Provide every school-age child and young person with opportunities to learn about Stephen Lawrence, his life and legacy
- Celebrate and teach children the importance of respecting diversity, equality and inclusion
- Reinforce the skills that children need in order to challenge discrimination and racism
- Reflect on how we can ‘Live Our Best Life’.
Through our schools’ leadership specialism, Star is committed to delivering a rich and diverse leadership programme that grows character and inspires charitable and social action. Understating the importance of, and celebrating, diversity, equality and inclusion are fundamental to this vision and in supporting our pupils to develop civic and moral leadership virtues.
Mufti Hamid Patel CBE, Chief Executive of Star Academies, said: “We are proud to have participated in the first Stephen Lawrence Day, as its message reflects our own Star values of Service, Teamwork, Ambition and Respect. It is important to reflect on Stephen’s legacy and to nurture our pupils to develop strong characters in order to enact positive change in our society. I hope we continue to inspire our pupils to help to improve cohesion in society and that Stephen Lawrence Day will form a lasting legacy to ensure Stephen’s death will never be forgotten.”
Added By: Star Academies | Date Added: 28th Apr 2019 | Posted In: Latest News