TEACHING BRITISH VALUES
Promoting British Values at St Swithun's Church of England Primary Academy
The DfE consistently identify the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy, and these values were reiterated by the Prime Minister in 2014.
These values are taught explicitly through Personal, Social, Health and Emotional (PSHE) and Religious Education (RE). We also teach British Values through our curriculum underpinned by our Christian Values.
At St Swithun's, British values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is firmly embedded within the life of the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through the School Council, Eco - Council and the Wellbeing Committee.
Children have the opportunity to see democracy in practice, voting for their committee representatives on an annual basis. Children who wish to consider leadership roles in school are encouraged to reflect on the skills and attitudes needed and the responsibilities that they will be taking on.The School councillors vote for the Chair, Vice-Chair and Secretary. The School Council also contribute to the appointment of new members of staff and they are involved in decisions about charity fundraising.
We openly encourage pupils to share their views respectfully about different matters, whether this is during a discussion in curriculum time (subjects like P4C, RE and PSHE develop children's ability to reflect on the views of others), in debates or more informally when holding pupil dialogue discussions or through an annual student survey.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of laws, whether they be those within the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced. Pupils are taught the value and rationale underpinning laws. They are given opportunities to reflect on the protective value of laws, the rindivdual responsibilities that follwoing the law involves and the consequences when laws are broken.
Pupils follow rules on a daily basis, for example following our Pupil Code of Conduct, which was written by the children, or playing by the rules when representing the school at a sporting event. They are taught about the need for fairness in giving praise if it is to be used effectively to motivate all.
High standards are an expectation and modelled by all.
Our weekly Friday Celebration Worship highlights those who are upholding the school’s rules and values, whilst regular reminders are given in the classroom, during worship or at any point during the school, should there be any issues that need to be brought to children's attention. The pupils, themselves, are constantly reminding each other about making ‘good choices’ and behaving in an appropriate manner. Consequences, in line with the school’s Behaviour Policy, remind the children that breaking the rules may impact on themselves and others.
At St Swithun's we acknowledge that mistakes are an essential part of our learning and enable us to make progress both personally and academically. We want children to know that they are in a a safe and supportive place. We are keen for pupils to know that refection on mistakes can make us wiser and we facilitate this process in class and in a restorative justice approach to conflict.
Our children are actively encouraged to make personal choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. We provide boundaries and support the reflection by which our children can make choices safely and wth confidence. Children are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through the E-Safety, PSHE, RE and P4C curriculum. Children are given freedoms and encouraged to make choices in a range of aspects of school life. For example: challenge levels, methods of recording, participation in extra-curricular opportunities and application for additional leadership responsibilities.
The Christian Value of respect underpins all that we do. It is threaded through our curriculum, ethos and values. Respect is consistently and frequently discussed with pupils through whole school worship, PSHE, circle time, P4C and School responsibility groups' Committee meetings.
Our positive behaviour philosophy is based around ensuring that all members of our community care for and respect one another and that they value everyone as individuals.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
We teach tolerance through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. As a Church of England Academy within SNMAT, we welcome children of all faiths.
During whole school worship and through our curriculum, we explore Christian values, for example, Hope, Friendship, Courage and Compassion, Trust, Justice and Service. These apply equally to all faiths and beliefs. Different faiths, beliefs and festivals are explored in R.E lessons - all major faiths are studied over the different key stages.
We welcome visitors from other faiths into our school and encourage links with representatives from other faith grous, thereby increasing chilldren's understanding and respect for other beliefs and religious customs to develop and to hear speakers discuss what their faith means to them. Our partnership with Gamston C of E Aided School allows our children to engage in joint schools inter-faith days. A number of charities are supported by the school and the School Council, Eco-Council and Ethos Group contribute to discussions about fundraising to support a range of international charities. Any incident of prejudice – which could be based on faith or belief – would be treated with utmost urgency in accordance with the school’s Behaviour and Anti-Bullying policies.