The DfE have 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 Colegrave Primary School, these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is rife within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council and pupil questionnaires. Children are given the opportunity to design and vote for their school team sports kit, as well as decide on equipment for our playground. The winner of ‘Colegrave’s Core Values’ each term is based solely on pupil votes. Our school behaviour policy involves termly rewards, which the pupils vote on as a class group.
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 part of our journey as a Rights Respecting School, children are taught about the UN Rights of a Child. These articles are displayed around the school and children are regularly given the opportunity to explore articles further in lessons and assemblies. Each class has created their own class charter, which incorporates their own class rules, as well as setting the school expectations. 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. This is done through whole class teaching and restorative meetings, when school rules are broken. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service help reinforce this message.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. We promote the language of choice when we are communicating with children and always encourage children to make positive decisions. As a school, we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safety, through of provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Every class has a talk box, which children are encouraged to use, this is checked regularly and actions are taken accordingly. We are a Rights Respecting School, where pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms. Through EPIC time (Everyone Positive in Colegrave) we discuss and advise how to exercise these safely.
Our school ethos and behavior policy revolves around core values, such as respect. Every week we have a themed assembly, which focuses on one of our school rules. Epic (Everyone Positive in Colegrave) follows, where students are taught more about positive behaviors from the school rules and how they can emulate these in school and the wider society. We have a large pastoral support team, including a behavior support teacher, three learning mentors and a speech and language therapist. These adults lead 1:1 sessions, small nurture groups and whole class activities to promote positive behavior. Rights Respecting posters around the school promote respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom charters.
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. All children are taught RE and visits to various places of worship are encouraged as part of our RE curriculum. We also hold celebration assemblies for festivals such as Eid, Christmas, Diwali and Guru Nanak, where parents and carers are invited into school to celebrate with us.
The school has a high-profile ‘Language of the Term,’ that runs throughout the year, linking to languages spoken by our EAL pupils. Members of different cultures or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school.