After the riots – why black people do not gain the education they deserve

by - 21st October 2011, 14.36 BST

The fifth Anthony Walker Memorial Lecture is tonight being held in Bristol.

The guest speaker for the event, hosted in partnership with Bristol City Council, is Dr Adolph Cameron, General Secretary of the Jamaica Teachers’ Association who, in light of the recent riots in England, will look at why so many young black people do not gain the education they deserve and what we need to do about it.

Other speakers include Anthony’s mother Gee Walker, NUT general secretary Christine Blower and NUT president Nina Franklin. There will also be performances by pupils from Barton Hill Primary School & Children’s Centre and Hannah More Primary School.

Anthony Walker was a black British A-Level student from Huyton, Merseyside, a churchgoer and a keen basketball player.  He was murdered in a brutal, racially motivated attack on 30 July 2005.  The crime shocked Anthony’s community, as well as the people of Liverpool, and gained widespread national publicity. The perpetrators were brought to justice and received lengthy prison sentences.

During Black History Month, this is a unique opportunity to consider the experience of black boys in schools in the Caribbean and in the UK and discuss approaches to promoting achievement and celebrating success.

The lecture is being held in the South West to mark the year that Nina Franklin, a Bristol teacher, is National President of the National Union of Teachers.  Nina Franklin is a committed campaigner against racism and has done much to enhance the Union’s work to combat racism against teachers and young people.

Councillor Barbara Janke, Leader of Bristol City Council: “We are delighted to be hosting the Anthony Walker Lecture this year. The theme of promoting the achievements of black Caribbean boys is important for the city and one we have worked on as a priority in Bristol.  I hope that this will provide an opportunity for wider discussion and a chance to show the achievements that have been made in Bristol.”

Nina Franklin, NUT President and Bristol teacher: “We are honoured that Dr. Cameron has agreed to come to Bristol to deliver the lecture and also that Mrs. Gee Walker will also attend. This will be an excellent evening which will also celebrate the talents of local Bristol school children.”

Andy Woolley, South West NUT Regional Secretary: “Racism either in schools or our communities needs to be eradicated. Ensuring that all our children and young people reach their full potential is important not only for the individual but society as a whole. The Anthony Walker Foundation’s work to make this goal a reality is invaluable, and the NUT is proud to be a sponsor of the annual lecture.”

* For more information, go to www.teachers.org.uk/events and to attend e-mail awl@nut.org.uk or call 020 7380 4861.