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Responding to the rise of the far right BANNER

The NASUWT is partnering with the German teachers’ union GEW in an exciting project looking at the impacts of far-right extremism in the classroom and how it affects teachers and teaching.

It is hoped that through a series of dialogues and exchange visits involving UK and German teachers, a better understanding of the rise of populism and its impacts can be achieved.

This will help inform policy and the development of materials, guidelines and recommendations for action. 

The NASUWT is alarmed by the incidence of far-right extremism and hate crimes in the UK.

Over the last decade, the Government has presided over a hostile environment agenda which has created the conditions for hatred to flourish.

Official numbers of reported hate crimes have risen to more than 124,000 a year across England and Wales. Nearly three-quarters of these hate crimes were racially motivated, increasing by 12% in just a year.

UK schools are not immune and children and young people are often exposed to hate speech on social media and elsewhere. The Union believes more needs to be done to examine and address the problem of extremism within schools and colleges.

The project with the GEW will support teachers to tackle the rise of the far-right in schools and challenge far-right narratives in the classroom.

The Union also wishes to understand the experience of those teachers at the forefront of working with children and young people who are captured by the influence of both far-right narratives and far-right promoting individuals and understand how they can be supported better.

It is hoped the work will identify the extent to which far-right agendas are impacting children and young people and the impacts within school such as the effects on pupil behaviour, bullying, abuse of social media and tensions within the community.

Subject to funding, the project will involve a visit of UK teachers to Germany to explore the situation in the German context and a reciprocal visit by German teachers to the UK.

There will be production of materials recording the experiences, ideas and actions being taken by teachers and both education unions to tackle populism in schools. These can be shared between members of NASUWT and GEW in an online exchange then more widely with other education unions in Europe.

The project will close with a final conference in the UK, hosted by NASUWT held to both raise awareness of the issues discovered and documented during the project and to influence policymakers and politicians.

NASUWT will be seeking funding for the project from grant making bodies in Europe.


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