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 recently. At Shawlands Primary School these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is widespread within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council. The elections for our School Councillors are based solely on pupil votes. Our school behaviour policy involves rewards which the pupils vote on as a class group. Our children were involved in creating our school values. As part of lesson monitoring, children are spoken to for their opinions and thoughts.
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 reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. The school has one important rule: ‘To make the right choice’.
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, through of provision of a safe environment and empowering 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 and PSHE lessons. Whether it is through the choice of challenge; of how they record work; or of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Part of our school ethos and behaviour policy has revolved around core values, and is reinforced regularly through assemblies and work in class. Posters around the school remind children of our School values which promote respect, safety and consideration for others.
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 are supported by learning in RE and PSHE. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge in order to enhance learning within classes and the school.