The Department of Education introduced a statutory duty in September 2014 for schools to promote British Values more actively and to ensure they are taught in our schools.
There are five key British Values: democracy, rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
These values are embedded in our school vision statement and are encompassed in our twelve Christian school values. We encourage our children to develop their understanding of these values in order that they become responsible citizens both within school and beyond.
Throughout their time at Forncett CE VA Primary School there will be many occasions where children will have the opportunity to be involved in the democratic process, for example through voting and having their voices heard. We understand that the children’s opinions about their school are valid and need to be a key part of our decision-making.
All staff model the value of democracy through asking questions and inviting children’s answers and opinions, whether it is in lessons, during assemblies, at lunchtime or on the playground. As soon as the children start school in Reception they are encouraged to develop their decision making skills, learn to make informed choices and take responsibility for them. Our School Council has members democratically elected annually from each year group by children only and has regular meetings to represent the views of their classmates.
Our school’s behaviour policy makes it clear that children are expected to co-operate and take into account the views of others.
The rule of law
We consistently reinforce our high expectations of our children and they are taught the value and reasons behind those expectations. They recognise that whilst we have rules at school, other rules and laws exist in the country for the same reasons i.e that they are there to protect us, that everyone has to take responsibility for their own actions and that there are consequences when rules are broken.
At the beginning of each academic year each class agrees a set of rules with their peers and the teacher. These are then displayed in the class and referred to as necessary. In addition, the whole school rights and responsibilities are revisited and explained.
Our programme for Collective Worship ensures that our twelve core Christian values, including respect and responsibility, are understood by all pupils.
The school rewards good behaviour in a number of ways, including the presentation of good choice tickets, teacher and heateacher ‘special person’ awards and the weekly ‘perseverance’ award.
Our PSHE / SMSC curriculum includes units on the importance of the rule of law and participation in curriculum subjects such as P.E. helps children to appreciate the need for rules in everyday activities and pastimes.
Visits from services such as the road safety (cycling proficiency) and the police and visits to events such as The Crucial Crew, also help us to reinforce key messages.
By signing the Home School Agreement all parents and carers, children and teachers, show their commitment to upholding our school rules.
We have a clearly structured Behaviour Policy which everyone is expected to follow. Children are helped to learn to manage their own behaviour and take responsibility for their actions. We help children to understand the connection between actions and consequences.
Within school, children are actively encouraged to make choices. Through our provision of a safe environment and empowering teaching, children are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms. Whether it is through their choice of learning challenges, how to record their work, choosing which extra-curricular activities to participate in or what to eat at lunchtime, our children are given the freedom to make many choices. Our curriculum also provides opportunities for children to be taught how to make safe choices e.g. through e-safety lessons, PSHE/Circle Time activities
As a Church of England school, respect is at the heart of our ethos and values. Children learn that their behaviour has an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of our school community are encouraged to have respect for themselves and for others. School events give pupils the opportunity to meet with a variety of people in different situations, for example sports fixtures, trips and residential visits and inviting visitors into school.
We support others by fundraising for a variety of charities including Children in Need, Sport Relief, Foodbank collections at Harvest, sugar collections at Christmas and the Children’s Society’s Christingle event.
Our curriculum, including our R.E. and M.F.L. schemes of work, provide opportunities for our pupils to develop respect for other people of different faiths and cultures. Special days, such as our European Languages Day and Continental Breakfast Café family event, give parents, carers and children the opportunity to share and celebrate their culture.
Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
Our curriculum, including our R.E. scheme of work, provides a broad and balanced education about a range of faiths and cultures. This includes providing pupils with an understanding of key celebrations and holy days, for example Diwali and Chinese New Year. The teaching of our core Christian values instils the need for all pupils to respect everyone regardless of their faith, beliefs and culture. The school’s key underlying value is that we should…love our neighbour as we love ourselves through treating other people as we would like to be treated.
School staff work hard to ensure that any cases of bullying and racism are dealt with swiftly and effectively. Tolerance of different faiths and beliefs is a key part of the school’s work to promote anti-bullying, for example during Anti-Bullying Week.
As a school we will actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to these fundamental British values, including ‘extremist’ views.