Teachers and education professionals can help children face disfigurement with confidence

Information for teachers and education professionals

Information for teachers and education professionals

More than a million people in the UK have a disfiguring condition, injury, illness, mark or paralysis. This includes many thousands of children who all too often face the challenge, especially at school, of other people’s stares, comments, questions, ostracism and bullying. In school, good interventions are essential, both to support the child whose appearance is unusual, and to manage reactions in ways that are positive for everyone. Well-informed support for the child who looks noticeable to minimise their own appearance concerns along with expert and effective interventions when required, all help to ensure wellbeing and achievement at school.

In our image-obsessed society appearance concerns extend far beyond those individuals whose appearance is unusual or disfigured. And in our increasingly diverse and inclusive society everyone needs to know how to get along well with people who may appear unlike themselves. Everyone gains from excellent learning opportunities around appearance and difference.

Education professionals play a vital role in ensuring that everyone is able to be comfortable with themselves and with each other, and that children and young people with disfigurements are fully included and receive effective support. Changing Faces offers expert advice, resources and training to enable teachers and other educational professionals to understand and respond inclusively to these challenges. Together we can ensure that all children and young people succeed both academically and socially regardless of their appearance.

For more about research and practice when a pupil is vulnerable to being seen as different please refer to our Academic Reference Sheet – Education. You can also contact Dr Jane Frances, Policy Advisor in Education, or call 0345 450 0275.