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Schools of Sanctuary is a City of Sanctuary national stream that aims to make schools places of welcome. Schools with the award have demonstrated that they follow the Schools of Sanctuary model to ‘learn, embed and share’ issues related to refugees and asylum seekers. Bradford, Harrogate, Leeds, Ripon, Sheffield and Skipton all have at least one School of Sanctuary. York currently has none, which is why Edward Webb and Selena Whitehead, with the support of Sara Trewhitt our Regional Coordinator and many others, are aiming to build this movement here in order to locally and nationally recognise the amazing work that some York schools are already doing and to encourage more to do so.

Edward and Selena attended a regional Schools of Sanctuary training event on Saturday 23 March in Leeds to learn more about how to roll out this stream; we have developed resources to support schools; and we have held several meetings with two York schools, one primary and one secondary, which are actively working towards achieving the Schools of Sanctuary award by summer 2020. In addition, we have recently started talks with another primary school about starting the process. We hope that as the Schools of Sanctuary profile increases through York schools’ participation it will increase interest and encourage more schools to participate. We would be very grateful if you as our City of Sanctuary supporters, could speak to people you know, especially young people, governors and education professionals, about Schools of Sanctuary and direct any interest back to us.