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. At Keelham these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is rife within the school. The Culture council/pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council and Culture Council. The elections for our Councillors are based solely on pupil votes. Our school assemblies focus on a “word of the week” and these include such examples as “world citizen” “democracy” “free” and “fair” where further investigation and understanding occurs.
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. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service are regular parts of our calendar and help to 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 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, or how they present themselves as individuals, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Part of our school ethos and behaviour policy has revolved around core values such as ‘Respect’, and pupils have been part of discussions and assemblies related to what this means and how it is shown. Activities within the school promote respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as within our behaviour policy.
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Our Culture Council organises a termly “United culture focus” incorporating the study exploitation of different culture, so that understanding and acceptance increases. 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.
Prevent agenda -school is aware of the possibility of radicalization and extremism and all staff have completed Channel training to raise awareness. Issue are addressed through assemblies and class work.
Our Calendar of events also highlights our traditional events and activities such as Harvest festival celebrations, Christmas nativities, Easter/spring celebrations and Rose Day.