The concept of diversity is based on the idea that each individual is unique, and through this sense of uniqueness has their own merit – tying in with the notion of equality. This sense of uniqueness can be based on many different factors including age, race, gender, economic status, cultural background etc and should be taken into account when dealing with children in a setting.
Equality is the notion that each child has the right to get have their needs met and an organisation must make “reasonable adjustment” to ensure this can occur. This means practitioners must take into account the child’s characteristics and ensure measures are taken for their development.
Inclusion is the process of making the practice of “equality of opportunity” a viable activity in the setting. It means trying to remove as many barriers as possible for children to ensure they can get maximum benefit from the setting. For instance, we have a girl at our setting for whom English is not her first language, at home she speaks Urdu. One of the staff members also speaks this language and has given us some key words and phrases to ensure the child can get maximum benefit from attending the setting. Inclusion also includes the idea that all children need to feel welcomed and valued at a the setting, practitioners need to ensure every effort is made for this to happen.
Discrimination is the cause for the opposite of the above happening, i.e. the barriers being raised in a setting and childrens’ development being hindered because of this. It entails holding a negative prejudice about a group based on how they look and how they act. It is the opposite of diversity, for instance holding views that the way someone looks, or what religion they hold makes them unworthy of having access to the development opportunities that are readily available. This can have harmful affects on a child, they may consider themselves unworthy of what a setting may ofter, and develop negative stereotypes of...