Race Equality Charter
Race Equality Charter
The Race Equality Charter (REC) aims to improve the representation, progression and success of minority ethnic staff and students within higher education.
It provides a framework through which institutions work to identify and self-reflect on institutional and cultural barriers standing in the way of minority ethnic staff and students. Member institutions develop initiatives and solutions for action, and can apply for a Bronze or Silver REC award, depending on their level of progress.
Race Equality Charter Bronze Award Application
The University is seeking to gain the Race Equality Charter Bronze status by February 2022. Through undertaking a comprehensive self-assessment and working through each section of the REC, we hope to develop specific, targeted actions to advance race equality.
The work behind the Race Equality Charter is completed and supported by members of the Self-Assessment Team (SAT). The SAT meets regularly to review progress on our application comprises members of academic staff, professional services staff, and student alumni. Members are from a variety of ethnicities, and are all committed to advancing race equality.
The application is broken down into 10 sections. These include: the institution and local context; staff profile; staff recruitment, progression and development; student pipeline; teaching and learning; and an action plan.
Our Progress So Far
In April and May 2020, members of our community were invited to complete a student survey or a staff survey as part of the self-assessment process and to help us better understand our context. Over 600 staff and almost 1,200 students completed the survey in which they were asked questions on their experiences at Exeter. This will help us to discern how race has an impact on the experiences of members of our community.
From August to November 2020, an Inclusive HR Task and Finish Group was set up to supplement the work of the SAT. The group reviewed feedback from staff, suggested solutions to resolve the issues, and fed into the REC action plan.
In July 2021, we submitted a draft application to receive feedback from Advance HE. We are particularly proud of positive feedback on Speak Out - our 'sector-leading' reporting tool, our commitment of £25,000 to student-led anti-racism projects, and Elevate - our staff leadership and development programme for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic women.
From August 2021, we have a closer working relationship with the Policy, Planning, and Business Intelligence team to source data for the application and fill any remaining gaps.
In November 2021, we consulted with our community about the definitions we would use in our REC application and beyond. This conversation is still ongoing, but we have decided to continue the use of the acronym BAME when referring to data categories within our REC application until there is consensus on a better alternative.
Our findings were presented to Council in February and senior stakeholders discussed its impact on their workstreams.
After working on the feedback, our application was submitted to AdvanceHE in the February 2022 round. We are participating in the new trial minor revisions process. This will require applications being scored against the award criteria and institutions being provided with targeted feedback to further refine specific sections in their applications for improvement (short-term revisions) and development (longer-term goals). Those applications which are deemed to have narrowly missed meeting the award criteria may have the opportunity of participating in the minor revisions process (to address short-term revisions) rather than having to resubmit a full application at a future award round. We anticipate our feedback in April 2022.