British Values at Cropredy CE Primary School
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.” 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.
At Cropredy CE Primary School, we promote ‘British Values’ through our spiritual, moral, social and cultural education which permeates through the curriculum offer and supports the development of the ‘whole child’. We recognise that such development is most successful when those values and attitudes are promoted by all the staff and provide a model of behaviour for our pupils.
‘British Values’ have been identified as
Democracy is embedded at the school. Children are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen carefully to and with concern for each other, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinions and voices heard. Children also have the opportunity to air their opinions and ideas through our School Council and regular questionnaires. The elections of the School Council members and Sports Captains are based solely on children’s votes, reflecting our British electoral system and demonstrating democracy in action. Weekly assemblies led by the class teachers, Headteacher and Reverend Campbell, look at current news both locally and globally.
Rule of Law
The importance of laws whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced. Our school has a Behaviour for Learning Policy based on positive reinforcement which is embedded in our work every day. Each class also discusses its own rules, rewards and sanctions that are clearly understood by all and seen to be necessary to ensure that every class member is able to learn in a safe and ordered environment. Our 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.
Within school, children 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 our pupils to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and an empowering education. Our pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised on how to exercise these safely; examples of this can be clearly seen in our e-safety and P.S.H.E. lessons. Children also have a choice to participate in our numerous extra-curricular activities. We support others by participating in local community events and charitable events such as, Red Nose Day/Comic Relief Day, Children in Need, Children Singing for Children, Remembrance collections and supporting local charities. We believe that by engendering a caring and helpful environment and by learning to be independent can boost and nurture a healthy self-esteem.
Respect is one of the core values of our school. The children know and understand that it is expected and imperative that respect is shown to everyone, whatever differences we may have and to everything, however big or small. The core value of respect at Cropredy CE Primary underpins our work every day both in and out of the classroom. The children in Early Years have opportunities to integrate with other children across the school. As pupils move into the other Key Stages, further planned events and circumstances are planned for pupils to go into the community to meet with a range of people in a variety of situations which include: sports events, community events and shared participation with other schools within our local partnership of schools. It is important to facilitate opportunities for schools to be part of the local, national and global communities. Pupils, families and staff have much to offer in the development of community cohesion.
Tolerance of different faiths and beliefs
Our core value of respect ensures tolerance of those who have different faiths and beliefs. Cropredy CE Primary School enhances pupils’ understanding of different faiths and beliefs through religious education studies; P.S.H.E. work, visits and participation in celebrations. We also respect those without a religious belief. We have links and welcome visitors from other schools outside the UK. Different beliefs, traditions and customs are studied in depth, with visitors being invited into our school to enrich and extend understanding. Through this our children gain an enhanced understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society.
Our Assemblies help all pupils to find out about themselves and others linking their lives to the communities in which they belong. The themes cover areas, linked to our core values of respect, peace, perseverance, trust, friendship and forgiveness, along with other themes, such as: helping others and celebrations from a range of faiths and world events.
Children are encouraged to experience British Culture through our curriculum themes. Schools take part in local NOSPP sporting activities which help to instil ‘fair play’ and engender a ’team spirit’. The staff work closely with parents, carers and other professionals to ensure that the pupils are happy, well cared for and enabled to learn the skills they need to live a fulfilling life as part of their community.
Children learn about what it means to be part of Britain and how to uphold British values through our broad and creative Cornerstones Curriculum.
Some examples are:
Our Assemblies help all pupils to find out about themselves and others linking their lives to the communities in which they belong. The themes cover our core Christian values along with developing children’s understanding about celebrations from a range of faiths and also learning about world events.
Through our RE curriculum the children gain the opportunity to discover how people live and why they choose to live that way, whether their family has a faith background or not. Our curriculum enables children to explore ‘big questions’ such as, what does it mean to be a Hindu in Britain today?
The RE curriculum encourages children to reflect on the beliefs and values of different religions and appreciate how a community full of different religions can work together. Through this, children develop and acceptance that people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none) should be accepted, tolerated and celebrated.
Through the Geography curriculum children learn about Britain as part of the United Kingdom (identifying its position in the world and exploring its natural and man-made features) they also learn about their local environment through localised studies of the school grounds and the local community.
Through out a children’s school life they will develop an understanding of British history. Children learn about the people, events, troubles and successes that have shaped the country (e.g. Winston Churchill, Norman invasions, WW2, the Great Fire of London). The study of British history, as well as the history of other countries enables children to understand the value of individual liberty, mutual respect and democracy.
Trips and Visitors
Trips are an important part of learning which enrich children’s learning by providing real life experiences as well as developing their understanding of British values. As a school we also welcome visitors, from authors to sports men and members of the local community. We invite parents in to talk to children and share their religious beliefs and practise or life experiences. All of these experiences develop children’s tolerance and understanding of different beliefs and ways of life.