SHIELD marks 100 years of women’s sufferage



New SHIELD contributing writer, Ellie in Year 9, wrote a brilliant piece about the role British suffragettes played in LGBTQ+ History…

On the 6th of February this year (2018) the Representation of the People Act received Royal Assent. The act gave women over the age of 30 the right to vote. (since men could vote over the age of 21 already) However, it is often forgotten or ignored that some of the campaigners for the womens vote were lesbians or bisexuals. Including two past LGBT+ history month icons: Emmeline Pankhurst, and Ethel Smythe.

Also, this year’s theme is “Geography: mapping the world.”, which is especially exciting since Australia and some countries in South America now also celebrate same sex marriage.

2018 is going to be used to focus on two events: the 30th anniversary of the passing of section 28, (which prohibited local authorities from disseminating products which “promote homosexuality”) and the 40th anniversary of the shooting of Harvey Milk. He was America’s first out-gay councillor.



SHIELD visit UEA to discuss Equal Representation in the Classroom.

SHIELD contributor Ellie in Year 9 wrote a fabulous report on our recent visit to UEA where SHIELD were invited to speak to university students…

On the 23rd of January 10 of our SHIELD students went to the UEA on a trip. The point of the trip was to go and speak to a group of trainee English teachers to suggest how they could be more inclusive regarding our (the students) lessons. 

Several subjects were covered including: 

  • ADHD by Grace

  • Being a Gipsy by Billy

  • Autism by Saffron

  • Islamophobia by Tahmid

  • Trans representation by Terry

  • Violence and/or Trauma in books and how children could understand and be prepared for it by Sophie and Connor

Equality and fair representation is topical because in our Year 9 English lessons we’ve been studying George Orwell’s “Animal Farm”.  In order to understand why Orwell wrote a criticism of Communism and why he makes the pigs such horrible characters, we first had to be aware of the background (context) of the real life people he was describing.  Just like George Orwell, we want people to be aware of who we are and where we’re from before they study us!

Our trip to UEA was a big success and we gained lots of experience of public speaking, as well as expressing our ideas about some very current topics.

“Going to the UEA was a pleasure,” says Terry, one of the SHIELD speakers;  “especially because of how keen and wonderful our audience of PGCE English students were. As shield members, we have received very enthusiastic feedback from Mr. Earl and Mr. Rolfe, and we will certainly continue to wear the beautiful badges with pride.”


Dr. John Gordon, Senior Lecturer in Education at the UEA personally wrote a letter to each of the speakers, praising the pupil presentations. He said,

The students presentations were superb with a really impressive quality of information, and also a very good compliment to the PGCE group considered in the morning…The students were a real credit to themselves, and the school. The session had a powerful impact on the UEA students. I’m really glad we were able to organize the session – thank you!” 

The Shield group looks forward to giving more of these sorts of talks and helping people understand topics like this in the future. 

Rainbow Laces for Sport 🌈

SHIELD have strong links with the LGBTQ+ charity Stonewall and this month saw the excellent Rainbow Laces for Sport campaign.

The idea was a simple one: athletes and fans of sport would wear rainbow laces to promote equality in sport.

Norwich City Football Team were spotted with rainbow line flags and rainbow laces, in honour of former player Justin Fashanu who experienced homophobic bullying and tragically took his own life.

Staff and students at HHS donned their laces for equality.  SHIELD- making history in education! 🌈

SHIELD promote “Reading in the Community”.

Do you have elderly relatives? Maybe you have a neighbour who can’t move around easily or a family friend who is disabled.  For older people and people with disabilities, Christmas can be a very difficult time.

The SHIELD team recently answered a request on social media for visitors and entertainers to come to Oakwood House, a residential care Home in Norwich.  We decided that as we couldn’t all sing (!) we’d bring them the joy of literature instead.

So, armed with several David Walliams books, some Roald Dahl stories and a sprinkling of Lewis Carroll, we headed off to Oakwood in the minibus to spread some seasonal cheer.

Our visits were not easy: many of the people we read to were hard of hearing. Some were very poorly and a few could not speak for health reasons. However, we smiled, laughed, chatted and read and the two visits we made passed by in a flash.

Oakwood House were very grateful and made us feel very welcomed with biscuits and squash. Our link, Emily said:

Our manager Pete was thrilled with how it all went and said he hoped it would be a regular thing. Musicians would be great too. It is really hard with our residents who are unable to verbalise but they really do benefit from such interactions.” 

We hope the visits will improve our own reading and social skills, whilst bringing comfort and fun to others.

Do you know someone who would benefit from being read or chatted to, like this?