Today we were honoured to receive a visit from Prime Minister David Cameron, Home Secretary Theresa May and Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon who visited Luton to launch the Government’s Counter Extremism Strategy.
We are thrilled to have been chosen as the host for their visit and for having been identified as a school that has positive engagement, partnership working and community at the heart of its ethos.
During their visit our special guests met with members of the School Council and a group of students from Bristol who have been involved with a charity called Integrate Bristol, an organisation that was formed to help with the integration of young people and children who have arrived from other countries and cultures.
As well as supporting young people with their learning, the charity runs projects that help young people develop their skills so that they can participate in society and feel a part of the community they have joined, something which is very much a part of our own ethos here at Denbigh High School.
During the visit members of our School Council were also involved in a discussion about one of the charities new peer orientated initiatives called ‘Integrate UK TV’. The new initiative will involve young people providing resources for other young people who will then use those resources to provide peer to peer education on important social issues. The students also had the opportunity to speak with Lord Ahmad about the work that we and others are doing to prevent radicalisation.
The Prime Minister, Home Secretary and Lord Ahmad also signed the Luton in Harmony pledge and met with local community groups who have been doing some excellent work across the town including the Luton Women’s Network Against Violence & Extremism.
Cllr Hazel Simmons, Leader of Luton Borough Council, said;
“We were pleased that the Prime Minister was able to hear about the great work we are doing to celebrate our cultural diversity and to acknowledge the good work we are doing to promote community cohesion. We are proud of the hard work and commitment within our communities who are endeavouring to live and work together in peace and harmony.
“A partnership approach is key to tackling extremism and were happy that the positive work we are doing with communities, schools, universities and partner agencies has been recognised. We all have a part to play in challenging extremism in all its forms.”
We are very proud of the School Council members who took part in this visit and we are pleased to be recognised for our academic achievements as a key part of promoting community cohesion and positive choices.
Adrian Rogers, CEO of the Chiltern Learning Trust, said;
"We are delighted that the Prime Minister chose to visit Luton, and he acknowledges that high results and outstanding education are achieved in the town.
“Like many schools in Luton, we pride ourselves on working very closely with our community, and it is this close relationship, along with very high expectations, that means the children in our Trust achieve so well."
Colin Townsend, Headteacher of Denbigh High School, added;
“At Denbigh High we see the academic success of our young people as central to empowering - that they choose positive pathways and stay safe from extremist ideologies of any nature.”