We write as all the schools within the Dorchester Area Schools Partnership (DASP) to condemn the racist abuse which our national football team have endured.

We are sickened by these recent events. In our corner of Dorset, vastly white, we do not shy away from an issue which affects all of our students irrespective of their race.

In our schools, the English national team have been received as heroes; we have witnessed first-hand the transformative power of sport for young people. In our schools, we have celebrated the creation of a team, the lifting of national spirits and the glorious British values which Southgate’s men have enabled us to teach. Everything that our national team has achieved this summer is to be applauded.

Within each and every one of our nineteen schools, we have embarked upon a learning journey to properly embed understanding of diversity, equity and inclusion.

We recognise that the Britain we live in today needs us to better prepare young people to meet a diverse world with thought and care. Our work spans curriculum, school culture and the hearts of all staff and young people. We are collaborating to ensure that the journey aged 3-19 within our schools secures citizens who are actively antiracist and able to positively influence the world they will enter on leaving school.

On Sunday evening, a brave young man called Saka - just 19 years of age - carried a nation’s hopes with him as he stepped up in an act most adults would have cowered from.

Saka exemplified everything we look for in a great British citizen: energy, commitment and the willingness to serve one’s country with honour. He deserves only our respect, as do all our footballers.

We find in Rashford, Sterling and Phillips stories of childhood struggle that are nothing short of inspiring. We find in Southgate and Kane, strong and quiet leadership. We have a national football team to be so very proud of and we must cherish them.

We are determined to work in our schools to ensure that the next generation are without the terrible racism that we have seen and which corrodes our society.

This work goes way beyond football; it is of such gravity for our young people of all colours, in order to create the community England needs for tomorrow.


DASP (Dorchester Area Schools Partnership) Chairman