British Values Statement
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; it was reiterated in 2014. At Suttons Primary we reinforce these values in the following ways:
Democracy is embedded throughout our school curriculum. Pupils are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen carefully to each other, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinions and voices heard. Regular pupil questionnaires ensure that everyone has a ‘voice’. Annual elections take place for House Captains and School Council representatives, reflecting the British electoral system and demonstrating democracy in action.
At the beginning of each school year the children in each class collaboratively create the class rules they want to see upheld throughout the year.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, is consistently reinforced throughout the regular school day and also through planned activities and assemblies. Our school has ‘Golden Rules’, which are deeply embedded in our work every day and through our Behaviour Policy. Clear, consistent consequences and reward systems are in place to promote positive behaviour. Class rules are created at the start of each academic year; they are displayed in class and referred to regularly. They ensure that ever class member is able to learn in a safe and ordered environment.
Within class lessons and assemblies, pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities involved and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as the Fire and Police services, help reinforce this message.
In PE, the importance of rules and fair play is highlighted and enables the pupils to understand the need for rules beyond the immediate school context, as well as the importance of exercise as a healthy activity.
Our curriculum has been carefully designed so pupils develop skills that enable them to understand the way rules and laws were developed at specific times in history and how they reflected the values of the period. Our RE units of work allow pupils to learn about the fundamental rules and beliefs of all the major religions and focus on common areas and differences within them.
We educate and provide boundaries for pupils to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and inspiring education, and actively encourage them to do so. Our pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights, responsibilities and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely; examples of this can be clearly seen in our e-safety and P.S.H.E. lessons. Whether it is through choice of challenge; of how they record; of participation in our numerous extra-curricular activities; our pupils are given freedom of speech and the opportunity to make choices. Children have key roles and responsibilities in school, such as Play Leaders and Reception Class Monitors.
Mutual respect is embedded within our ‘Golden Rules’ and in all that we do as a 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. Pupils learn that their behaviour has an effect on their own rights and an impact on others. This value is woven into our assemblies as well as through the everyday curriculum planning. Children also take ownership of classroom rules at the start of each academic year. The core value of respect at Suttons Primary School underpins our work every day both in and out of the classroom.
In class, pupils often take part in collaborative work where they have to work closely with others. Pupils debate philosophical ‘Big Questions’ every day, which encourage them to think for themselves, listen, respect the views of others and recognise that, for some questions, there are no clear cut answers. Additional support is provided for individual pupils by LSAs; this helps develop self-esteem and respect for others.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
We place a strong emphasis on celebrating diversity in all its forms. Our broad and balanced RE curriculum enables pupils to learn about and respect the beliefs of those from different religions. Learning about other beliefs and religions is further embedded though our assembly plan. Our curriculum actively plans for pupils to visit religious buildings to enhance their understanding of different faiths and beliefs through first-hand experiences. These include trips to a Hindu temple, a Sikh Gurdwara and the local Christian church. Members of different faiths or religions are also encouraged to visit our school and share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. Beliefs, traditions and customs from around the world are studied in topics and during themed weeks
We celebrate the similarities and differences between each other. Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying are delivered and supported by learning in RE and PSHE. Our pupils, staff and our community members are expected to be aware of, and actively discourage sexual, racial, gender or disability discrimination, both in school and the wider world. We celebrate the positive contributions that all people can make to our school and global community.
At Suttons Primary School, we will actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including ‘extremist’ views. The head teacher has up-to-date training in the ‘Prevent’ agenda; part of the Home Office’s Counter Terrorism Strategy.