"Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it" Proverb 22:6
St. Leonards Church of England Primary Academy is committed to working closely and in harmony with its community and celebrating the diversity of the UK. We aim to prepare children for life in modern Britain and to ensure that our school ethos, curriculum and approaches to teaching and learning reflect and promote British values.
We recognise that these values are not exclusive to being British and that they have come to be accepted throughout the democratic world as the method of creating an orderly society in which individual members can feel safe, valued and can contribute to for the good of themselves and others.
We work alongside our local community and recognise the variety of religious beliefs within it. We take children outside the school to take part in local events and meet different members of the community to appreciate the valuable contributions they make.
We take opportunities to:
• acknowledge, celebrate and commemorate national events and anniversaries related to key events in Britain’s past
• join in with international sporting events and find out more about the countries that host them
• support a number of charities that are selected by the children and arrange fundraising events
• invite members of the local community to our school events.
We understand the role that our school has in helping prevent radicalisation and supporting our children in developing a world view recognising Britain’s place within it. The British values are:
• the rule of law
• individual liberty
• mutual respect
• tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.
Explicit links are also made British Values in the school’s Jigsaw PSHE Scheme of Work. This scheme of work is broken down into 6 topics or ‘puzzles’ which are: Being Me In My World, Celebrating Difference, Dreams and Goals, Healthy Me, Relationships and Changing Me. There are 6 lessons for each topic.
BRITISH VALUES DEFINITIONS
As a collective, the children have learned about each British Value and have developed child-friendly definitions which are:
DEMOCRACY – Using your vote so your voice can be heard.
THE RULE OF LAW – The law applies to everyone. It is equal and it is fair.
MUTUAL RESPECT – Treating others how you would want to be treated. Even if they have been unkind to you.
TOLERANCE – Making a space for other people’s opinions (even if they seem different, odd, wrong or interesting).
INDIVIDUAL LIBERTY – As long as we do not break the law, we have rights and freedoms.
Many of our school routines are built upon the concept of democracy. All children have the opportunity as an individual, as a member of a group and a member of a class, to influence decision making and to have a voice. They understand that they must use this voice responsibly.
Whole school approach:
• Children are regularly consulted both formally and informally about how their school might be improved.
• Everybody has an opportunity to voice their opinions and contribute towards class and school rules. We make joint decisions about what rules are relevant to us and why we need them.
• We have a School Council who meet regularly. A democratic voting system is used to elect the members from each class.
• Children within the school have key roles and responsibilities including in the School Council and through a monitor system in each year group. Classes vote for the people they would like to take on these responsibilities and we discuss the importance of this.
• The School Council applies the democratic process and information is fed to and from the council throughout the year.
• During national and local elections we hold our own mock elections and discuss what it means to represent a political party and how a voting system works.
• Pupil voice is used as part of our subject leader monitoring and lesson observations. The school is also focused on increasing the use of surveys and questionnaires to hear teacher, parent and children’s points of view.
• They see the example that is set with staff working cooperatively with parents, governors and each other to make the school the best it can be.
Children in our school understand the need for rules to make ours a happy and secure environment. Our Behaviour Policy is shared and understood and this provides a basis on which we discuss other laws and rules and how they apply.
Whole school approach:
• Statutory and non-statutory policies are embedded across the school (e.g. Safeguarding, E-Safety, Health and Safety, Food Hygiene).
• Teachers’ Standards and employee contracts are adhered.
• Our core Christian values, Behaviour and Anti-Bullying policies are a way of consistently reinforcing the rule of law.
• Children often reflect on the need to have rules and that breaking the rules has a consequence for themselves and others. Throughout the stages of the Behaviour Policy children have many opportunities to make the right choice and take responsibility for their actions.
• There are many opportunities around the school to create and follow rules: playground games, computer acceptable use agreement, and sports clubs.
• Community links and visits from authorities such as Police and Fire service help to raise awareness of rules beyond the school environment.
• Rules and expectations are clearly explained to children when going out in the community.
Mutual Respect – We promote positive, polite and caring behaviour around the school. Children respect themselves, other people and their surroundings.
Whole school approach:
• Every individual is respected in our school and our actions towards one another reflect this.
• Respect is one of our Christian values. We recognise the importance of not only respecting one another but self-respect too.
• Forgiveness is a core Christian value and there is placed emphasis in PSHE on explicit teaching of emotional intelligences.
• Our focus on core Christian values and positive school ethos encourage respect towards the rights of others and ourselves.
• All adults in the school model mutual respect by treating children with dignity and building positive relationships.
• Our welcome for visitors is part of the school ethos as is the focus on each child as an ‘ambassador’ when they are out in the community.
• We enjoy making links within the wider school community: all visitors are treated with respect. On trips and visits we are respectful towards environment, people we don’t know, others in our group and ourselves.
• We have high expectations of behaviour around the school which creates a respectful environment.
• We have a clear anti-bullying policy which emphasises the importance of us creating an environment both within school and the wider world in which individuals can feel safe and valued.
• We have a buddies system and children use the friendship benches when they are looking for someone to talk to or play with.
• Our extra-curricular clubs and enrichment activities focus on building self-esteem and self-respect. They also include team-building activities.
• The staff code of conduct ensures that staff behave towards each other in an exemplary way, setting a good example for the children.
• The language used between staff and children at all times is considered to be vital in showing how we respect one another.
Children at St. Leonard’s have respect for their own and other’s cultures and can discuss differences of faith, ethnicity, disability, gender and families. We recognise that similarities can unite us and differences can enrich us.
We welcome difference and diversity and aim to create understanding of how this adds to the richness of our community.
Whole school approach:
• The school adheres to statutory frameworks such as its Single Equality Policy, Equality Objectives, SEN Policy and Accessibility Policy.
• Our behaviour and anti-bullying policies make it explicit to children that inappropriate behaviour or treatment of others due to differences is not acceptable.
• Our EAL (English as Additional Language) children are supported through a rich and diverse curriculum and are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning.
• Key dates of festivals and significant cultural events are shared in weekly assemblies and whole school activities and events.
• Our RE curriculum allows opportunities to learn and be respectful of the cultural and religious viewpoints of others.
• We aim to do more than ‘tolerate’ those with different faiths and beliefs. We recognise the extent to which our own traditions and history have developed side by side and the rich cultural heritage that different world religions bring.
• We believe that exploring and understanding other people’s faiths and beliefs are rewarding experiences and help us understand our own faiths and beliefs better.
The rights of every child are at the centre of our ethos. However, children also recognise the boundaries there must be too. Independent thinking and learning are encouraged and there are frequent opportunities for children to make their own choices. We place an emphasis on respecting difference and valuing creativity.
Whole school approach:
• Through an range of after school provision children are given the opportunity to follow and develop their own interests and can try many different activities.
• Creative home learning tasks are given termly with several choices of how they respond.
• We provide a range of lunchtime activities for children to participate in.
• UNICEF’s Rights of the Child are shared and discussed in Key Stage 2 assemblies.