Promoting British Values
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 year. At St Thomas’ Primary School these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is richly embedded within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our various school council, pupil questionnaires, meeting with the senior leaders and through being either a Head boy, Head girl or a Prefect. St Thomas also supports Rights Respecting Schools. Our school behaviour policy involves rewards and sanctions; this is shared through all aspects of school life and also shared with parents, and children from Reception to Year 6.
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 worship time. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service are a regular part of our calendar events and help reinforce this message.
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, through provision of a safe environment and an empowering approach through the education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety lessons. Pupils are given the freedom to make a wide range of choices from attending extra-curricular clubs to supporting fund raising events.
As a school which holds values at the core of its ethos, our school Values and Behaviour policies have evolved around the Christian Values of Love, Friendship, Forgiveness, Honesty and Koinoia. Pupils have been part of discussions and collective worship related to what these means and how it is shown. Values, including respect, are taught explicitly within lessons, it is shared with home through newsletters and website information. Adults throughout the school model, demonstrate and promote respect and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our behaviour.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
At St Thomas’ Church of England Primary School, children have opportunities to learn about different faiths and cultures. Through its Religious Education and wide, varied curriculum, the children have opportunities to learn and question about the variety of faiths and beliefs across the world and in Britain.