The DfE have recently reinforced 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 have been reiterated by the Prime Minister this academic year. At St Joseph the Worker Catholic Primary School these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is evident throughout the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through the school council and pupil questionnaires. The school Christina values are voted on by the pupils at the beginning of the academic year. Pupils have been able to take part in votes for wider school issues such as, play equipment and clubs and school council are involved in the appointment process for senior leaders.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. Pupils are taught the value and reason behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. The school’s behaviour procedure mirrors this as it encourage discussion over what behaviour has occurred, how it could have been prevented and a consequence for the pupil. Pupils know that they are expected to take responsibility for their actions at an age appropriate level.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safely, though a provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advise how to exercise these safely, for example through our Online Safety and PSHE work. Whether it be through choice of challenge, of how they record, of participation in extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Our school ethos and behaviour policy reflect the Christian values such as ‘Respect’, ‘Trust’ and ‘Compassion’. Pupils have the opportunity to learn about these values and others through discussions in PSHE & Come & See Lessons and assemblies. Pupils are encouraged to think about how we they can show these values both in words and actions within school, at home and in the wider community. Pupils are regularly involved in church and community events which they volunteer for eg. community singing, community sporting events, Collaborative School Council meetings. Members of the community are invited in during our annual Aspirations week to share their experiences.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying are shared and supported by learning in Come & See and PHSE. The school has a specific multi-cultural enrichment week which takes a different theme each year eg. dance, food, festivals.