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Talk to tackle racial inequalities in education


A talk to explore racial inequalities in education took place at Leeds Beckett University on Wednesday 19 October.

Professor Kevin Hylton

‘White lies: things we’re told about race and education that aren’t true’ was presented by Professor David Gillborn, Professor of Critical Race Studies and Director of the Centre for Research in Race and Education (CRRE) at the University of Birmingham, at Leeds Beckett’s city centre Rose Bowl building.

Professor Gillborn’s lecture explored some of the lies that are told about race and education. He explained: “These are ‘white’ lies in the sense that they reflect the fears and interests of white people, especially white elites. These lies - such as the idea that white working class children perform worst in school - present a distorted and racist view of the education system: they shape the policy agenda and undermine moves toward greater race equality and social justice.”

Professor Kevin Hylton (pictured above), Chair of Leeds Beckett’s Race Equality and Diversity Forum and Patron of the Equality Challenge Unit’s Race Equality Charter Mark, commented: “The lecture by internationally acclaimed scholar, Professor David Gillborn, explored how racial inequalities in education are often maintained through a mix of untruths, aversive resistance and plain old racism. We expect university education to be a level and fair playing field; though it will be explained in this lecture that we need a) to offer a more informed understanding of ‘race’ in education and b) a more critical way to enter a dialogue of positive change where race relations in education is concerned.”

David Gillborn

Professor David Gillborn

Professor David Gillborn’s research focuses on race inequalities in education, especially the role of racism as a changing and complex characteristic of the system. His work, which includes six books, ranges from original studies in classrooms and with teachers, through to national reviews of research evidence in the field, and analyses of the changing policy landscape internationally.

Professor Gillborn’s talk formed Leeds Beckett University’s fifth Annual Race Lecture: an event established with the aim of raising awareness of its Race Equality and Diversity Forum and Race Equality Charter Mark commitments.

Our Race Equality and Diversity Forum supports the development of our University equality and diversity agenda. To join the forum or to find out more please contact the Equality team at equality@leedsbeckett.ac.uk

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