Promoting British values
The Government emphasises that schools are required to ensure that key ‘British Values’ are taught in all UK schools. The government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy.
The Department for Education states that there is a 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”.
At Widewell Primary Academy we use strategies within the National Curriculum and beyond to secure such outcomes for all our pupils. The following statements indicate the ways in which the fundamental British values are promoted.
Democracy is richly embedded within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Parliament. Representatives are elected from across the school in a democratic election at the start of each academic year. Decisions made by the School Parliament are shared and reported back after each meeting. Class representatives consider the views of those who elected them when making decisions. Representatives can be approached to put forward matters to the council throughout the year. The School Parliament have had the chance to interview our local MP, Johnny Mercer. We have also started an annual election for two year 6 pupils to become Head and Deputy Head for a day.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently and regularly reinforced. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind rules (that they govern and protect the school community), and the responsibilities on the individual that this involves. Informal visits from our local PCSO link to upholding the rules of law outside of school.
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 all pupils to make choices safely. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through E-Safety. Pupils are further empowered through being part of the School Parliament. Pupils are given the freedom to make a wide range of choices from creating and running extra-curricular clubs to supporting fund raising events.
A key part of our school ethos is respect. It is enshrined within the policies of the school. Pupils will challenge each other when not showing respect and encourage each other to be respectful. Adults throughout the school model, demonstrate and promote respect for others as do older children who have suitable, age related, tasks and responsibilities and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our behaviour.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in RE. Members of different faiths or religions are invited to speak in school assemblies. Through our RE curriculum, which teaches the main faiths and focuses upon learning about religion and learning from religion, we promote tolerance of the beliefs of others.