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Tanglin Trust Junior School accredited with the 'Rights Respecting Schools Award (RRSA) Silver' by Unicef UK Singapore, 29 April 2019

By ITS Education Asia


Client Services Manager Vandana Rao met with Mr Cameron Davidson a Year 4 class teacher and the RRSA coordinator for the Junior School, instrumental in its implementation.

Read on for more details:

Tanglin Trust School Junior School has been accredited with the Rights Respecting Schools Award (RRSA) Silver by Unicef UK. Tanglin Trust School is the first school in South East Asia to have received this accreditation. As a school, Tanglin Trust has always strived to create the best possible learning environment for children. This achievement shows that the school is committed to promoting and realising children’s rights and encouraging adults, children and young people to respect the rights of others in school.

What is RRSA?

Unicef (United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund) is the world’s leading organisation working for children and their rights. Their RRSA is a moral framework based on 54 articles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) with the aim of embedding children’s human rights into a school’s ethos and culture. The RRSA embeds the principles of equality, dignity, respect, non-discrimination and participation in daily school life and gives children the best chance to lead happy, healthy lives and to be responsible, active citizens.

What does achieving Silver: Rights Aware mean?

  • Tanglin Trust School is explicitly embedding the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in its policy, practice and culture
  • The school promotes knowledge and understanding of the Convention throughout the school community
  • The school is putting into action and developing the plans outlined in the Action Plan for Silver, which were submitted to achieve the Bronze: Rights Committed
  • Tanglin Trust is beginning to see the positive impact of these actions on children and young people, staff, and on the school’s ethos, practice and environment.

Children and young people are beginning to see themselves as rights respecting global citizens and advocates for fairness and children’s rights, both locally and globally. Tanglin Trust School’s inspiring and open-minded teachers have embraced this worthy project, supporting student-led steering group and leading a wide range of interesting lessons and projects aimed at discussing and debating children’s rights. Creating class charters, playing ‘rights bingo’, holding a class climate questionnaire, celebrating special days including International Day of Persons with Disabilities and World Religion Day, having friendship captains in every class and playtime pals supporting in Year 2, donating food to the local community, and working alongside local charity Caring for Cambodia, are just a few examples.

What is the impact of RRSA?

Schools involved in the award have reported a positive impact on relationships and wellbeing, leading to better learning and behaviour, improved academic standards and less bullying. One student said: “It’s changed the way I have behaved; it makes me more thoughtful and respectful.” The RRSA Assessor commented: “The children explained eloquently how the school facilitated them to enjoy a range of rights… Pastoral care, ensuring “happy and confident” children, shone throughout the visit as a priority… Children believed their views were taken seriously.”

The Junior School’s recent British Overseas Schools (BSO) Inspection Report also reflects on the RRSA, saying: “The school’s success in achieving the Unicef Rights Respecting Schools Award permeates the whole school. It helps to develop pupils’ acceptance of difference and diversity and in conversations with inspectors many pupils talk about always trying to ‘do the right thing’. The impact has been to give another dimension to pupil voice, giving pupils the opportunity to discuss and reflect on the wellbeing of children in their own school and throughout the world and an understanding of how they can make a difference. Tanglin pupils talk with passion about their school because it is special. They say it makes them feel happy and valued, not just for what they can do but for who they are.”

Working towards Gold

The next step in Tanglin Trust School’s Rights Respecting journey is to work towards Gold. Tanglin Trust School will continue to strive for creative and significant opportunities for the participation and decision making of children and young people to influence and shape the life and work of the school. In addition, they will also continue to promote a school community based on equality, dignity, respect, non-discrimination and participation, where the whole school community has a deeper and wider knowledge and understanding of the articles.

For more information, please log on to: www.tts.edu.sg

Dulwich College Singapore

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