Statement from the Headmaster
Posted On: 12/04/21
We are shocked and saddened to read the recent reports of wholly unacceptable behaviours and attitudes that some female students have experienced during their time at Colchester Royal Grammar School.
Misogyny, harassment, abuse and discrimination in any form is not tolerated at CRGS. All reported incidents are dealt with in line with the highest levels of our Code of Conduct and we keep thorough records of such incidents. We recognise the value of a united approach to raising awareness of discrimination, harassment and abuse in every form it takes. We are clear that inaction by any bystander is to be complicit and is therefore equally unacceptable.
We have a moral and legal duty of care to all our students and CRGS has worked hard in recent years to raise the profile of Equality and Diversity across our whole school community. This work has included forging links with external organisations who have provided training for our staff and students, such as Gender Action, Stonewall and the East Anglia Anti-Racism Education Collective. Following consultation with our students, our Equality and Diversity Policy and our Equality Statement and Targets are updated regularly, and these documents are published on our website, along with our Code of Conduct and Child Protection policies.
Student voice is increasingly at the heart of our Equality and Diversity work and representatives from our student-led, staff-supported societies regularly meet with the Headmaster to raise their concerns and to offer constructive ideas and opinions for what we can do better. For example, a group of students have already prepared an excellent presentation on harassment, abuse and consent which will be delivered by students from the society in an honest, sensitive and change-enabling way during registration sessions early this half term.
There is clearly more to be done though. The CRGS Senior Leadership Team, our Safeguarding Leads, the School Counsellor and the pastoral team are always available for any current students who need to report an incident or who need help, support and advice. Our staff Equality and Diversity group can also be contacted via their dedicated email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Everyone who has contacted the school directly will be responded to as quickly as possible. We want to listen to and learn from everyone who has taken the time to tell us about experiences that have clearly fallen below the high standards to which our school community is proudly held. Further support and advice is available via the NSPCC on 0800 136 663 or by emailing email@example.com.
Finally, we would encourage anyone who believes that they have been the victim of a criminal act to go to the police if they have not already done so. We have made our local School Liaison Officer aware of the allegations of criminal acts and will work closely with the police to ensure such reports are dealt with sensitively and effectively.
12th April 2021