Promoting British Values at Bolshaw Primary School
In June 2014, David Cameron emphasised the important role that British values can play in education. Further, how well a school promotes such values is an aspect of Ofsted’s inspection process.
Although in 2014-15 this is something which is developing in its significance for schools, it is not something new at Bolshaw Primary School. British values are promoted in so much of what we do on a daily basis.
As well as actively promoting British values, the opposite also applies: we would actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British values, including ‘extremist’ views.
The term ‘British values’ might be slightly misleading in that these values are integral to so many countries throughout the world – they differ in no way from the values of most western European countries, for example.
Below are just a few examples of how we promote British values. The first section is a general overview; the others are specific expectations set out by Ofsted.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.”
Our united moto, strong mission statement and clear school aims; underpinned by our core values support all our children, staff, parents, governors and community to develop effective relationships throughout the school. They are at the heart of our school ethos, culture and are the foundations for our behaviour policy and SMSC / PSHE curriculum.
Bolshaw Primary School – School Moto
‘Together we believe, Together we achieve’
Bolshaw Primary School – Mission Statement
We respect and value every individual in our school community; and will inspire, challenge and support each other to achieve success.
Bolshaw Primary School – School Aims
To aspire to be a
Bolshaw Primary School – Core Values
Welcoming = be caring, empathetic and open to learn new things
Teamwork = be willing to share knowledge, skills and experiences
Risk Taking = be prepared to have a go
Independence = be confident, safe and happy individuals
Growth Mindset = be positive, creative, imaginative and resourceful
Respect – be the best that you can be
At Bolshaw we believe that it’s not just what you learn but how you learn; children and adults need to become learners for life to reach their full potential.
Democracy is evident throughout our school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard via members of our school council, learning council and through pupil questionnaires. Our school’s Behaviour Policy enables pupils to distinguish right from wrong. In instances of wrong doing, we challenge children’s wrong choices by allowing children time for reflection to accept their responsibility for making the wrong choice and support them to make the right choice for the future. We encourage a respect for democracy by using the voting process to elect class representatives for the school council, learning council, eco council. We use our pupil views to develop the school curriculum, learning environment, out of school provision, enrichment activities and school menus to create a thriving school that inspires and interests all our community.
Rule of Law
We explore the importance of Laws/rules, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country. Using the appropriate pitch and language for our children, Laws/rules are reinforced, particularly during school and class assemblies and SMSC. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws; that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and consequences when laws/rules are broken.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe, caring and supportive environment. From our youngest pupils we encourage our children to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advise how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety and SMSC lessons. Whether it be through choice of challenge, plan do and review, forest School activities, how they record work, selection of lunches or participation in our developing extra-curricular clubs- pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Respect is one of the core values of our school. This can be seen and felt in our pervading ethos in school. The pupils 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 Bolshaw Primary School underpins our learning every day both in and out of the classroom. Children and adults alike, including visitors are challenged if they are disrespectful in any way. Values are highly visible around the school and are part of our agreed code of conduct.
Tolerance of those of all faiths, no faith, different cultures and lifestyles
Our children and community are culturally diverse and we are proud to promote and celebrate our different backgrounds and beliefs. Enhancing our pupils’ understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity in our local community (60% white British, 40% ethnic minority) is integral to our curriculum.
Our pupils know and understand that it is expected and imperative that respect is shown to everyone, whatever differences we may have, and to everything, whether it is a school resource, a religious belief or opinion. Children learn that their behaviour choices have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community should treat each other with respect.
This is achieved through activities aimed at developing our pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Specific examples of how we at Bolshaw Primary School enhance pupils understanding and respect for different faiths and beliefs are:
- Class work involves discussions and activities to celebrate our diverse community of different faiths and different cultural heritage. Using age appropriate language we aim to educate our children about prejudices and prejudice-based issues by learning about these issues in RE and SMSC.
- Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning.
- Guest speakers from different faiths and religions are invited into school to talk to the children.
- Through Religious Education, SEAL and other lessons where we might develop awareness and appreciation of other cultures – in English through fiction and in Art by considering culture from other parts of the world, for example
- We use opportunities such as Display Week, Fairtrade, the Olympics, the World Cup, raising money for worldwide natural disasters to study and learn about life and culture in different countries around the world (whilst at other times we might consider groups or individuals who might be vulnerable in some way, such as those with mental health issues, medical poverty,)
- Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudiced-based bullying happen and are supported by learning in RE and PSHE.
Sadly, no school can guarantee that there will never be instances which are contrary to this value. At Bolshaw Primary School, such instances are extremely rare. They are treated seriously in line with our Positive Relationships Management Policy. Any forms of anti-social behaviour, racism or bullying will be reported to our Local Authority.