Equality and diversity


Our schools and learning communities are enriched with a diverse mix of people with different experiences and from different cultures and backgrounds.

GTC Scotland has developed this equality and diversity hub to support teachers engaging with the Professional Standards to:

  • develop their professional knowledge and understanding of equality and diversity;
  • engage with their professional requirement to promote equality and diversity; and,
  • challenge any inequalities or forms of discrimination they encounter.

The resources available in this hub are to support teacher professionalism and professional learning and are not learning and teaching resources for the classroom.

By gaining greater knowledge and understanding of all types of bias teachers can then consider any necessary changes to their learning environment, their employers’ policies and practice, and their learning and teaching materials to support equality and diversity.

GTC Scotland is very grateful for the contributions of our partners in collating materials and providing feedback on our professional learning modules. GTC Scotland is not responsible for the content of external websites.

Equality and diversity: a guide for teachers

GTC Scotland has created this guide to provide support for teachers to reflect on their understanding of equality and diversity and how it relates to their professional lives and actions.

Professional learning modules

GTC Scotland has collaborated with Dianne Cantali of the School of Education and Social Work, University of Dundee, to create two equality and diversity Professional Learning modules to support Scotland’s teachers in their knowledge and understanding of equality and diversity matters.

Module 1 - Introduction to equality and diversity

The purpose of this module is to support teachers and education professionals to develop their understanding of equality and diversity.

This module will encourage education professionals to critically reflect on their thinking and actions and consider how they might fulfil their responsibilities in this area through their teaching and wider professional activities.

The aims of module 1 are:

  • to explore the Professional Standard for Teachers regarding equality and diversity;
  • to understand what the requirements and expectations are of registered teachers with regards to equality and diversity;
  • to look at the definitions of equality and diversity within the Equality Act 2010;
  • to look at what the report ‘Teaching in a Diverse Scotland’ (Scottish Government 2018) means for teachers;
  • to explore some of the barriers to equality and diversity and how these can be addressed; and,
  • to reflect on this professional learning as part of Professional Update or, for probationer teachers, meeting the Professional Standard for Full Registration.

Module 2 - Reflecting on equality and diversity as teachers in a diverse Scotland

The purpose of this module is for teachers to engage in professional reflections and other activities, and to consider how their learning through the module will have an impact on their practice.

The aims of module 2 are to look in more depth at:

  • factors which can contribute to barriers to equality and diversity, and the protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010;
  • what equality and diversity means for teachers and learners with protected characteristics, and the implications of intersectionality and unconscious bias;
  • the role of teachers in challenging discrimination, assumptions and stereotyping;
  • next steps for career-long professional learning in equality and diversity; and,
  • reflecting on this professional learning as part of Professional Update or, for probationer teachers, meeting the Professional Standard for Full Registration.

Resources by protected characteristics

All teachers should ensure they take steps to minimise any barriers that may arise as a result of protected characteristics.

Everyone is protected against discrimination by the Equality Act 2010 because of the protected characteristics we all have.

The Equality Act defines the following protected characteristics: age; disability; gender reassignment; marriage and civil partnership; pregnancy and maternity; race; religion or belief; sex; sexual orientation.

Below, you can find sections for all the protected characteristics which contain resources to support your learning and reflections.

Case studies

GTC Scotland will be gathering case studies to support the critical thinking of teachers around some real-life examples of inequality and discrimination to help challenge and support our thinking and professional actions.

Additional case studies are also available in the GTC Scotland Equality and diversity Professional Learning modules above.