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 Micklem Primary School these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is promoted at Micklem School in a wide variety of ways. We have an elected School Council, an ECO-committee, a Sports Council and House Captains. The children, through our various organisations, have the opportunity to express their opinions and be heard. For example our school council is currently leading on improving the playground equipment. They have completed research and will then be taking this back to their classes for further discussion and voting on their favourite item.
Every class discusses at the beginning of a new term the importance of rules and how this is the structure which keeps them safe, happy and learning within school. Each class devises its own set of rules which reinforce the golden rules which are the core of our behaviour policy. Our behaviour policy is clear and used consistently throughout the school. The reasoning behind having a set of rules or ‘laws’ is reinforced through PSHE, circle time and whole school assemblies. Where possible links are made with the laws we all have to abide by in society.
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 pupils to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms. They advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety, PSHE lessons and through speaking and listening activities such as debates.
Our school ethos very much promotes mutual respect. We view each other as individuals and our ethos, which is to be kind, to speak well to each other, to empathise and support, promotes the value of mutual respect. This is also underpinned by our behaviour policy, our class and school rules and our home school agreement.
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. We encourage members of different faiths and religions to come in and share their knowledge either through assemblies or class visits. The curriculum is enhanced through real life experiences of different cultures such as French Day and Geography week.