Diversifying your English literature curriculum is a crucial step for all schools – but it isn’t as hard or as onerous a task as you may think. Joy Mbakwe discusses diversity and inclusion in the classroom
Image: Adobe Stock


When I joined my second ever school as a teacher, it was a very different place. The #BlackLivesMatter movement was yet to experience its second wave and TikTok was still a relatively new phenomenon.

As such, my school, at the time, existed as many did: unaware of the ways it upheld white supremacist ideals at the expense of the largely diverse community that it served. In turn, students, also unaware of issues such as systemic racism, passively consumed the diet handed to them in the name of success.

During my induction day, I was told that I would be teaching Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sign of the Four to my new year 10 class, and while I was unfamiliar with the text, I was keen to teach my first detective novel. Years later, I realised how at odds such a text was with the student population at the school.

Register now, read forever

Thank you for visiting SecEd and reading some of our content for professionals in secondary education. Register now for free to get unlimited access to all content.

What's included:

  • Unlimited access to news, best practice articles and podcast

  • New content and e-bulletins delivered straight to your inbox every Monday and Thursday


Already have an account? Sign in here