The DfE state 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 were reiterated in 2014. At The Federation of Greenways Schools these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
At the start of each school year the children decide upon their class rules/charter and the rights and responsibilities associated with these. The APSIRE Rules are discussed with pupils at the beginning of each term by the Headteacher during assembly and also by class teachers. It is important that pupils have a clear idea of what each rule means and the responsibility they have as individuals to follow these rules. The rules are displayed in each classroom and around our learning community so pupils can be reminded of their responsibilities; they can be praised if they have followed the rules and if they have broken them, the issue(s) can be addressed with appropriate sanctions. It is the responsibility of the class teacher on the first day of the autumn term to discuss the ASPIRE Rules with his/her class and to create additional class rules. These may be similar to the ASPIRE Rules, or may be new rules, appropriate to the needs of the class. A class contract can be drawn up, which each pupil signs, thereby agreeing to abide by the class rules. This document should be prominently displayed in the classroom. The contract becomes a powerful tool for reminding pupils about our expectations; if a pupil breaks one of the class rules they can be reminded they have signed the contract agreeing to follow them. There are opportunities to reward pupils who keep to the rules and consequences for those who break them.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced at Blenheim. Pupils are taught from an early age the rules of the school. These are our ASPIRE Values (see above) and Playground Rules. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind rules and 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 help reinforce this message.
At Blenheim, 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 informed choices, through a safe environment and an empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our eSafety and PSHE lessons.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values (respect and nurture). Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
We actively promote diversity through our celebrations of different faiths and cultures. Religious Education lessons, assemblies and PSHE lessons reinforce messages of tolerance and respect for others. Members of different faiths and religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. The children visit places of worship as part of their RE Curriculum.