Chestnut Grove Academy
45 Chestnut Grove
Balham, London SW12 8JZ

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At Chestnut Grove, we are PROUD to promote human rights. The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child underpins our school ethos, all our school policies and our curriculum. Every member of the community has rights and it is important for young people to learn about their rights. Since we are all entitled to rights, we also each have a responsibility to ensure that everyone can access their rights. The work of our staff and students ensures that each child can have their rights met but also that they work towards achieving rights for other children around the globe.

Chestnut Grove promotes human rights through its curriculum as well as extra-curricular and community events. Students learn about their rights and the rights of others and are active members of their community. Each year, students learn about different rights and fundraise to help those who are not always able to access their rights. The students have also designed their own charter outlining their rights and responsibilities.

The Student Charter

Equality and Human Rights Society

Each week, our Equality and Human Rights Ambassadors meet to discuss issues relating mto equality. This year, they have written for the school newsletter, helped to design powerpoints for Health and tutor time, and campaigned again discrimination.

Our Equality Ambassadors are:
Ephraim Conteh
Malika Cornwall
Sarah Tassew
Zainab Siddiqui
Margi Towl
Kaela Clarke
Kane Johnson-Hauldren
Yasmina Brodie
Molly Rae Harman
Yasemin Jurczynski
Milena Serneabat Ungar
Elena Henderson
Maisy Downes

Human Rights Events

Anti-Bullying Week is also commemorated each year. Our students took part in a Rainbow Cake Sale for LGBT + rights, judged by food blogger Jack Monroe, and a group of our students won the national prize for their outstanding cake and rap. This year, students have also learnt about hate speech and how the laws surrounding free speech have been made.

Our displays, assemblies and tutor time activities also reflect our inclusive ethos. Students this year have learnt about the history of human rights, Black History Month, International Woman's Day and the Paralympics. Students were awarded for achievement last year by Paralympian Aaron Phipps who plays rugby for Great Britain and Elly Barnes who runs the charity Educate and Celebrate. Each year, our students also wear their 'Get over it!' badges with pride. Students focus on a different protected class each half term: immigrants, ethnicity, gender, LGBT+, mental health and disability, and beliefs.

Students focus on different rights in all subjects from designing equality campaigns in Design and Technology, to studying Democracy in History. Health each week is taught by tutors and is heavily focused on helping students learn about their rights and become active citizens.  Our Curriculum.

In tutor time, students study different events and role models whilst, around the school, you will see that each department has nominated their own Equality Heroes. This year, students in KS3 also took part in a Human Rights Project Week. Students chose their own lessons from a wide range of choices, including:

  • Fly kites for peace: Making kites as part of the 'Kites not Drones' project started in Afganistan
  • Afganistan Skype: Skyping with students in Kabul to find out about their experiences
  • Facing History: Learning about the events of the Holocaust with a guest speaker
  • Houses of Parliament: School trip to the Houses of Parliament
  • Journalism and Film: 24 Students worked as journalists and film makers for the week, reporting on the events, with a further 40 students designing websites to host their work
  • Brixton Project: Students visited the Black Cultural Archives in Brixton to learn about the history of migration in South London
  • Mock Trial: Students worked with a barrister to participate in a mock court case
  • First Aid Training: 200 students learning basic first aid and CPR as part of learning about our right to healthcare
  • Chickenshed Theatre: Looking at equal opportunities in drama with an inclusive theatre group
  • Herstory: Finding out about feminism and women's history
  • Women in prison: Looking at prison reform with a guest speaker who works for the charity, Women in Prison
  • Inequality in London: 60 students visited the Museum of London to learn about the history of inequality in the City
  • Medicins San Frontiers: 20 Students met an aid worker from Medicins Sans Frontiers to learn about the charity's role tackling Ebola and in refugee camps
  • Peace trail around London: 40 students participated in a Peace trail around London to learn about the key historical figures who have made an impact on international democracy
  • Caranes for peace: Inspired by the story of Sadako, students aimed to create 1000 origami cranes
  • Songs and speeches of protest: Students learnt about peaceful ways of protesting by creating songs and speeches that could change the world
  • The right to clean water: Students learnt how to clean water by visiting a water treatment plant
  • Cheerleading and protest: Students practised cheerleading as a means of peaceful protest
  • Human rights and the use of walls: Students studied how walls have been used to deprive people of human rights in countries around the world before creating their own human rights murals
  • Blankets and woolly hats: Students looked at the plight of people who suffer from a lack of warmth and made hats and blankets for refugees
  • The right to leisure: Students took part in a wide range of leisure activities, from watersports to cricket
  • Football Beyond Borders: Students learnt about what is happening in Palestine and looked at how football has been used to raise awareness of human rights issues

For the full convention on the Rights of the Child, please see:

How to help

We have the right to shelter and health: Food and clothes appeal
This term we are collecting food and clothes for our refugee appeal. Please bring in dried food including pasta, rice, tea, cereal, UHT milk and tinned fruit and veg. All clothes and shoes are welcome, so long as they are in a reasonable condition. Please hand in all items to tutors before the Easter holidays!

We have the responsibility to help others: Nominations
If you know a student who has achieved despite adversity or made a significant contribution to the school or local community, please email a paragraph explaining what the student has done, to Ms Taylor so that they can be considered for an award:

We have the right to live free from discrimination: Campaigning
If you know a student who has achieved despite adversity or made a significant contribution to the school or local community, please email a paragraph explaining what that student has done, to Ms Taylor so that they can be considered for an award:

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