Promoting British Values at St Margaret's
Values won't be assumed because schools demand they are, particularly if they're very different from those at home. They have to be arrived at through mutual exploration and understanding.
According to Ofsted, British values are:
- the rule of law;
- individual liberty;
- mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs and for those without faith.
It is important for children to be able to make individual choices, with the knowledge that they are in a safe, secure environment. At St Margaret’s School we want to encourage children to make their own decisions whilst providing them with safe boundaries which will enable and empower them to make informed choices. We promote personal responsibility and liberty through;
• Our Learning Challenge Curriculum which involves children contributing their thoughts, ideas and questions which directs the learning.
• Children have the opportunity to make personal choices such as daily lunches, library book choice and extra curricular activities.
• The learning behaviours are reflected on within class on a daily basis and celebrated in a weekly assembly.
• Providing curriculum opportunities both in specific subjects as well as our ‘Be Healthy’ focus for children to learn about keeping healthy and safe, thus being able to make personal informed personal choices about their own lifestyles.
• School had a comprehensive eSafety policy and pupils receive advice and instruction from teaching, pastoral and specialist staff (LSCB) on safe internet usage.
Tolerance of Culture, Faith and Others
At St Margaret’s School we feel that it is essential that we promote diversity and broaden the children’s experiences.
In order to enhance the children’s understanding of other faiths and cultures we;
• Teach awareness of other faiths and cultures through our RE and PHSE curriculum.
• We highlight how Religious Education provides children with a deep understanding of their own faith as well as awareness of the faith and traditions of other religious communities as a basis for understanding and respecting them.
• We provide resources which broaden the children’s experiences, for example through texts, role-play and toys.
• Visitors are invited into school to enhance learning and trips are organised to local places of worship
Mutual Respect is fundamental to our ethos at St Margaret’s School and we uphold our inclusive mission statement. Children are encouraged and supported from a very young age to respect and care for each other. We expect all members of the school community to treat each other with respect.
To promote a greater understanding of mutual respect we ensure;
• PSHE is taught across all year groups and this teaches children to think about their own behaviour and how it effects themselves and others.
• The children learn about key festivals from other countries and cultures during assemblies and classroom activities.
• Key Stage Two helpers support younger children for example, at lunchtimes, indoor playtimes, assemblies and through sports leading.
• There are active educational links with other schools in Oldham.
• Children and staff support charitable works.
• Anti-bullying themes are focused on during assemblies and the whole school engages in an ‘anti-bullying’ week.
• Adults model mutual respect around school and nursery and we reinforce the value of everyone’s opinions in class debates.
Rule of Law
It is important that children are able to distinguish between right and wrong and are taught to respect the civil and criminal law. At St Margaret’s School, we believe it is important for children to accept responsibility for their behaviour and we give children many opportunities to reflect on their behaviour choices. We aim for children to develop a good understanding of how they can contribute positively to the wider community with which they live in.
We reinforce this by ensuring;
• Children are involved in reviewing the School Behaviour policy.
• Every class sets their own class rules at the beginning of an academic year.
• Children are encouraged to follow rules in other subjects, competitions and visits to other settings.
• Weekly reflection themes give children the opportunity to reflect personally, amongst small groups and in classes. Themes focus on children reviewing their own behaviour and how it affects others.
• We plan visits from other authorities such as Police and Fire Service which help to reinforce the message that there are consequences when laws are broken.
• Rules for sports and games are made explicit in activities such as football, netball, multi-sports.
• Childline visits year 5 and 6 to talk with them about rules for personal safety.
• Road safety visitors discuss safety on the roads in key stage one and year 6 take part in bikeablity classes.
At St Margaret’s School it is important that we hear all stakeholders voices and we actively encourage feedback from children, staff and parents. We are a UNICEF Rights Respecting School.
In order to promote democracy;
• The children decide upon their class charter and the rights associated with these. All children contribute to the drawing up of the charter annually.
• We have a School Council which members are voted onto by their class. The School Council meets regularly and agrees a School Council Code of Conduct. The children share ideas of how to improve the school and consider charitable events for suitable causes. They also have to feedback ideas from the wider school community. There is a children’s suggestion box for whole school use, coordinated by the school council.
• We provide children with a broad general knowledge of and respect for public institutions and services.
• Seek the opinions of all stakeholders by sending out staff, parents and children’s questionnaires.