Social justice brings together concepts of fairness, equality and human rights. A socially just society is one where everyone has equality of opportunity and is treated fairly, irrespective of class, wealth or race.
Social justice is an important issue for global development. There are huge inequalities in the world, both in terms of access to resources and in the balance of power between countries. What can result from the powerlessness felt by people living in poverty? And what positive action can pupils take to contribute to a more just world?
With its emphasis on the rights of the poor and underprivileged, social justice is also a key element of many world religions. Pupils could explore different faith perspectives on social justice in RE lessons.
The following links and articles provide useful background information to help you teach about social justice:
Wise Geek: What is social justice? A short article providing a definition and exploring different political perspectives on social justice
Useful teaching resources about social justice:
British Red Cross: Justice and Fairness A package of Key Stage 3 resources exploring issues of fairness and justice through the lens of international humanitarian law or the ‘laws of war’
CAFOD: Romero teaching resources Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 resources exploring the life of Archbishop Oscar Romero, a prominent social justice campaigner who was assassinated in El Salvador in 1980
GA: World on your feet Key Stage 2 activities exploring social justice issues through ‘the story of my trainers’
Leeds DEC: Education for social justice A range of Key Stage 3 resources developed as part of an EU funded project
Radical Math US website for educators who ‘work to integrate issues of economic and social justice’ into maths classes
RISC: Faith in Action Profiles For Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3, five profiles exploring how faith has motivated people to take action as Global Citizens
For further teaching resources, browse through the following searches:
Key Stage 2
Key Stage 3
We welcome suggestions for useful articles and teaching resources on the topic of Social justice. Please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.