Frontline role for schools in racism battle

LESSONS ARE to be introduced in school to teach children that it is "not British" to be racist. Pupils will be taught the benefits of living in a multi- cultural society as part of the "citizenship" lessons that are to form part of the National Curriculum.

The Home Office minister Mike O'Brien said the work would involve the parents of teenagers who show racist tendencies. Schools will also be encouraged to carry out "early intervention" initiatives to try to limit racist indoctrination at home. Racists will also be forced to pay reparations to the victims of their attacks.

Mr O'Brien said the problem of racism among some young whites had been starkly illustrated by the covert police film of the five men suspected of killing the black teenager Stephen Lawrence and the account of their actions in Sir William Macpherson of Cluny's report into the murder.

He said: "For many white people the report made deeply shocking reading. Perhaps some people needed to be shocked to get a passing idea of what it's like to be black or Asian in Britain."

Mr O'Brien, who pointed out that not all racists were white, and that young people as a whole were increasingly anti-racist, said the the programme could only succeed with the support of institutions. "It's going to be a long-term struggle. For the impact on white youth, it is important that we have more people from ethnic minorities in positions of authority in our society."

But the Home Office has been encouraged by the results of a series of projects aimed at challenging racism. In Bermondsey, south London, the National Youth Agency has backed a scheme which involves directly confronting known racist gangs and questioning them about their attitudes. The project, which included taking young people out of their predominantly white neighbourhood to mix with those from more ethnically diverse areas, led to a reduction in racist attacks in the area.

Meanwhile the father of Stephen Lawrence reacted angrily yesterday to the news that Gary Dobson, one of the five men suspected of killing his son, will take part in a radio phone-in programme today. Neville Lawrence said he was upset that Talk Radio was proceeding with the programme despite the family's opposition to the decision by ITV to broadcast interviews with the five suspects on last Thursday's Tonight programme.

"In the same way that we wanted nothing to do with the Tonight programme we want nothing to do with this ... I think [Talk Radio] have been completely insensitive and unconcerned about our feelings and our views."

A spokeswoman for Talk Radio said: "We decided it was a matter that was in the public interest and would give our listeners the first chance to speak to somebody involved in the case." She said Mr Dobson had approached the station with the idea and he was not being paid.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Arts and Entertainment
Lou Reed distorted the truth about his upbringing, and since his death in 2013, biographers and memoirists have added to the myths
musicThe truth about Lou Reed's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths
News
people
News
Ed Miliband received a warm welcome in Chester
election 2015
Life and Style
Apple CEO Tim Cook announces the Apple Watch during an Apple special even
fashionIs the Apple Watch for you? Well, it depends if you want for the fitness tech, or the style
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Project Implementation Executive

£18000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...

Recruitment Genius: Chiropractic Assistant

£16500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Chiropractic Assistant is needed in a ...

Recruitment Genius: Digital Account Executive - Midlands

£18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...

Recruitment Genius: Web Developer

£28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides coaching ...

Day In a Page

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own