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IOE Student Blog


A blog on life at IOE and education affairs written for students by students.


Improving the representation of the queer community through languages teaching in London

By IOE Blog Editor, on 13 June 2024

Hugo Jasniak in front of a tree. Image permission: Hugo Jasniak.

Image permission: Hugo Jasniak.

By Hugo Jasniak, Languages PGCE

Hi everyone! My name is Hugo Jasniak. I am French, currently studying at UCL IOE and about to finish my teacher training to become a teacher of French and Spanish in London from September onwards.

As most of you will know, June marks Pride month, meaning it’s time for the LGBTQIA+ community to shine. I really wanted to convey how important this month is to me, even though I personally believe that representation of the community should be ongoing throughout the year, and not only for a month or during a one-off event when Pride happens.

As I am finishing my degree in teacher training at IOE, I wanted to convey how my passion for the fight towards greater representation for the queer community is reflected in my own studies and professional values at school as a gay man.

To start with, my main focus throughout the year has been around inclusive teaching. Indeed, how do I make sure that as a teacher, everyone and every student’s profile is represented and feels valued within my classroom? No matter their sexuality, social status or race, I really wanted all of my students to feel welcomed and safe, free to express themselves in ways that are respectful and cheerful. This doesn’t have to be an effort for teachers to make – rather, it should be natural. How can we expect every student to achieve their maximum potential if they don’t feel safe being who they are?


Creating space for Black voices at UCL: A student (and now alumni) perspective

By IOE Blog Editor, on 18 April 2024

Two students in the library studying.

Credit: Drazen via Adobe Stock.

By Olivia Amponsa-Gyasi and Kelly Cummins, Child Development MSc

Since our original conversation in 2022, we recognise that departments at IOE have invited non-white guest speakers to talk or promote their work and have done more to champion inclusion within the university.

It started with an assignment…

Being from a minority background within academic spaces is something you quickly become hyper-aware of, knowing that the way you navigate the space will be different and often more challenging. Exploring these experiences has always been something I was interested in so when I had the opportunity to choose my topic for a Master’s assignment, I knew exactly what to do.

I interviewed Olivia about her experiences as a Black Master’s student at UCL. The importance of this topic became even more apparent after researching systemic racism within higher education institutions and particularly data surrounding Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) students’ progression, or lack thereof, within higher education. The statistics were both (more…)