In April, this year it was reported that the Department for Education (DfE) had decided to scrap nationality questions from the school census, completing the key campaign goal for Against Borders for Children. However since then we have been receiving examples (see photo) of children’s nationality and country of birth, which are still being asked for by schools.
So we are asking parents to do three things:
- Refuse to answer/leave blank those questions if asked
- Encourage other parents/carers particularly with children starting primary or secondary school to do refuse/leave it blank
- Please get in touch with us if you know someone who has been asked nationality questions, so that we can build up a better picture about how widespread this practice still is across the country.
These questions have already proven to have produced divisive and racist outcomes which was noted in the House of Lords. When the nationality questions were introduced shortly after the EU referendum, they have contributed to the hostile environment affecting millions of children particularly in diverse communities.
However since our campaign win, it is now clear that schools are still issuing nationality questions as the Department for Education have failed to update their official guidance on the School Census. Even though now it has been over 8 weeks since DfE’s decision to scrap this damaging practice was made public.
As we are aware of particularly primary schools asking incoming reception classes to provide these details, we are asking all parents and carers affected by this to continue to boycott these questions on the school census.
Until all schools are properly informed to scrap this information, this campaign will continue and we will also review the broader hostile environment in schools.
Together we can completely end this attempt to bring the hostile environment into our schools.
Refuse. Retract. Resist.