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Taking The Tradition On:

Jun 29, 2021

In this series, ‘Taking my white privilege on’, I am talking to black artists about their life experiences and looking forward to the future to the society we want to build and live in and exploring what part I can play as a white woman living in a white rural area.

In this episode, I talk to Casey Bailey, the Birmingham Poet Laureate and our focus is on education.

Like everything else, our education system is changing – but big organisations can take a long time to change course.  Most schools would claim not to be racist, but is that actually the case?  How can we ensure equality of opportunity and aspiration?  How do we equip young people to question and challenge the social structures around them?

Casey Bailey is a man of both words and action, an artist and an educator. Casey is a nationally renowned poet who has worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company and been  commissioned by the BBC.  At the same time, he is a secondary school Assistant Headteacher. Casey’s is a Specialist Leader in Education, with a specific focus on Behaviour and Community factors and has worked in a number of schools supporting their, development, implementation and review of behaviour policies and the development of a whole school culture around behaviour.  He is a leader in raising aspirations and removing the disadvantage gap

The things that have driven Casey to pursue a career in teaching, have also led him to work within his own community and the wider community to support and promote the development of people who contribute positively to their environment. Born and raised in Nechells, Birmingham, Casey has experienced first-hand the impact of deprivation and lack of direction, but also the strength and resilience of so many people from this type of background. Casey is determined to see harnessed the qualities these areas can instill and to overcome the issues that are often synonymous with such places. Casey’s work within his community, along with his other work in education and poetry was recognised by Birmingham Live in 2018, when they named his as one of the 30 most influential under 30 year olds in the city (#Brum30Under30). This was followed up in 2019, when the University of Worcester awarded him an honorary Fellowship and membership to the university’s College of Fellows.

To find our more about Casey and his work, please visit:

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Thank you to Arts Council England for supporting these podcasts.