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 this year (2014). At Welshampton CE Primary these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways.
Each year the children decide upon their class charter and the rights associated with these. All the children contribute to the drawing up of the charter.
Children have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We have a three houses and the children vote once a year in September for their House Captain and Vice Captain. They participate in many events in these "Houses" and vote for how they want to organise some of the events such as Red Nose Day, Walk to School Week, National Waste Week and Drama Day.
Children are encouraged to share their views in House meetings and some of our 6 children are elected onto the "Children's Health and Safety and E-Safety committee" which meets once a month to review anything related to these areas. Parents have an annual questionnaire with which they are able to put forward their views about the school and parents are invited to join the "Parents' Forum" in order to share their ideas for how we can further improve our school.
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 well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. 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. 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. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safely, through provision of a safe environment and 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 E-Safety and PSHE lessons. Whether it be through choice of learning challenge or of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
As a Values-based Church of England school, mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community are expected to treat each other with respect.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Welshampton is situated in an area which is not greatly culturally diverse, therefore we place a great emphasis on promoting diversity with the children. Assemblies and worship are regularly planned to address this issue either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. Our RE and PSHE teaching reinforces this but we also address cultural differences through Music, Drama and Art as well as in our Geographical, Historical and English studies. Members of different faiths or religions are invited in to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. We plan for children tovisit places of worship that are important to different faiths.
At Welshampton we will actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including ‘extremist’ views.