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Our British Values

BRITISH VALUES

The DfE have recently reinforced the need for 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 definition of these values is set out in the 2011 Prevent Strategy.

At St Nicolas and St Mary School, we actively promote these values and challenge any opinions and behaviours that are contrary to or undermine them.  We foster an environment where there is mutual respect, tolerance and democracy, and where the rule of law and individual freedom are respected. The values are embedded across all areas of learning and school life and help to nurture the development of the whole child, in preparation for future life in modern Britain. 

We aim to help pupils understand the role of British values in society and this is done in the following ways:

DEMOCRACY

The democratic process is very important to school life and pupils are given the opportunity to voice their opinions within class discussions, through the election of different pupil candidates, pupil surveys and interviews with the senior leadership team.  We strive to involve all stakeholders in decision making processes and regularly seek the involvement of the whole school community including all staff, parents and governors. Examples include:

  • Learning about the history of democracy within our Year 5 Greek topic
  • Class discussions (paired, grouped and whole class)
  • Elected candidates for School Council, Eco Council, Art Ambassadors and Dream Team
  • Whole school voting for our key Christian Values, including pupils, staff, parents and governors
  • Year 6 elections for Sports, Swimming and House Captains, leading mixed ability/aged teams
  • Voting for the name of the class bear (Reception Classes) or different options in class eg ‘Poem of the Week,’ choosing a song/prayer at the end of the day
  • Class monitors eg for letters, ICT, PE etc
  • Open door policy (parents/carers), parent forums, consultations, questionnaires and workshops
  • Involvement and agreement of pupils in drawing up class rules/rights and responsibilities
  • Mock general elections during the National election period
  • Pupil interviews by Governors and Headteachers
  • Pupil voice section on annual reports
  • Pupil and parent voice in decisions regarding outcomes and provision for SEND children eg. outcomes in Individual Learning Plans, One Page Profiles etc (see SEND Information Report)
  • Building Learning Power – Team Ant
  • Regular staff meetings
  • Staff involvement in planning school events, drawing up policies etc
  • Visits from our local MP

TOLERANCE OF THOSE OF DIFFERENT FAITHS AND BELIEFS AND MUTUAL RESPECT

As a Christian school, our strong ethos and behaviour policy reflect the Christian value of Respect and Friendship for all. Our rich and reflective Religious Education curriculum seeks to promote an understanding of different faiths and beliefs, through high quality teacher led discussions, exploration of varied artefacts and resources and opportunities to visit different places of worship and receive visitors from different faith communities. 

At St Nicolas and St Mary School, we provide a caring environment where respect for each other is key within the relationships between all stakeholders. Examples include:

  • Our RE curriculum includes the study of Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism
  • Use of persona dolls to introduce different faiths from a young age
  • Visits and visitors from different faith communities eg to local Christian churches, a local mosque, a local Rabbi, parents from different faiths and Hindu and Buddhist workshops
  • Parents originating from other countries are invited in to talk about their cultural traditions eg at Christmas
  • Large RE resource library including artefacts, online resources and a wide range of books including many children’s RE texts
  • Links with different schools eg St Bartholomew’s in London, École Marcel Aumeran in Provence, France and the Azezo Tekelhaimanot Elementary School in Ethiopia.
  • Recognising and learning about different cultural festivals eg Chinese New Year in the EYFS
  • Learning different languages eg French in KS2, and greetings in other languages eg during the register
  • Celebrating and experiencing other cultures through the Arts eg looking at artwork, music and dance
  • Mixed age group Houses and Peer mediators from KS2 supporting younger children
  • Building Learning Power – Reflective Owl andTeam Ant
  • Use of social stories and comic strip conversations to encourage respect and positive relations with others
  • Specialist TA support and group work for children with social communication difficulties
  • Working with charities like the RNIB to encourage greater understanding of disabilities
  • Regular parent forums, PTA events, staff, governor and pupil council meetings
  • Following our Rainbow Rules
  • BEST point system to reward excellent behaviour
  • Respecting and celebrating all achievements in and out of school.
  • Organising for a Muslim pupil to shake hands with the vicar during our Eucharist service rather than receiving a blessing
  • Joint activities with St Peter’s Catholic school including a visit to the AMEX Stadium and a Maths Week.

THE RULE OF LAW

We reinforce the importance of laws and rules to ensure a firm understanding of good behaviour both in the classroom and beyond. Our Christian values help us to promote good life choices and enable children to understand the difference between right and wrong. Our consistent behaviour policy and BEST point system allow pupils to comprehend what is expected of them and provide sanctions and rewards. Regular visits from outside agencies eg the Police and Fire Services also show pupils how our British rules can help to keep them safe. Examples include:

  • Teaching of the Christian values of justice, respect and responsibility
  • Clear Mission Statement provides a framework and guidance to all stakeholders – Journey together, guided by God, to do the best we can
  • Rainbow Rules for behaviour across the whole school
  • Use of the Sun, Rainbow, Cloud system in the EYFS and class dojo points across KS1 and 2
  • Visits from the Police force and Fire Services
  • Year 6 presentation about the British legal system organised by local Magistrates
  • Internet safety day – training for parents/pupils and in school rules
  • Clear rules and risk assessments in place to keep us safe eg swimming, on trips, on castle, walking on the left
  • Year 6 Cycling Proficiency Course
  • BEST point system to reward excellent behaviour, certificates and tree for EYFS/KS1
  • Peer mediators from KS2 support younger children in their play at break-times
  • Pupil involvement in deciding rewards and sanctions
  • Talking about ‘good choices’ and ‘bad choices’ in the EYFS
  • Use of behaviour plans, social stories, comic strip conversations and individual reward systems to help specific children understand rules.

INDIVIDUAL LIBERTY

Pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe, supportive and caring, Christian environment. The education and boundaries we provide, prepare children to make the right choices, for example in terms of e safety or through bodies like the School Council, Eco Council or Dream Team, where pupil opinion and discussion can shape school life.  Pupils are given the freedom to choose from a variety of extra-curricular activities to enhance their learning, as well as the option to enter competitions, organise events to support different charities and plan and lead assemblies. Examples include:

  • Pupil voice through the School Council, Eco Council, Dream Team and Art Ambassadors
  • Volunteering for Class jobs/monitors
  • Peer Mediators to support younger pupils in making good choices at break times
  • Planning and leading charity events, eg bake sales, class stalls and non-uniform days and choosing charities to support eg RNIB
  • Planning and leading worship (small groups) and inputs for whole class assemblies
  • Freedom of discussion within the classroom (lessons and class worship)
  • Choosing from differentiated learning tasks to suit their ability or challenges within the classroom
  • Choice from a wide range of clubs including art, sport, music and languages (many free)
  • Choosing books from the library, through the Accelerated Reader scheme
  • Choosing activities on Sumdog, to support mathematical learning at home
  • Pupils have reflection time, to respond to marking and make improvements in their work
  • Encouraging healthy living through events like the Fun, Food and Fitness Week
  • Staff are involved in leading subjects which includes planning, budgeting and staff development
  • Links with the wider community offer opportunities to learn outside the classroom eg sports competitions and art ventures
  • Extended Leadership Team and Middle Management Training provide opportunities for career development and school improvement
  • Some homework tasks and competitions allow space for personal choice and individual expression
  • ‘Golden time’ for KS1/2 pupils (earnt through good behaviour), where there is a free choice of activities
  • Choosing whole class rewards eg for accumulated dojo points
  • ‘Choosing time’ within the EYFS and child initiated learning
  • Intervention is tailored to meet children’s interests.

OTHER WAYS WE CELEBRATE BEING BRITISH

At St Nicolas and St Mary School we are proud of our National heritage and this is reflected in within our curriculum and assemblies. Examples include:

  • Teaching of Christianity as the predominant British faith, through RE lessons and worship.
  • Celebrating key National events eg school parties for Royal Weddings, the Queen’s Jubilee, important Royal birthdays and Shakespeare's anniversary
  • Our London Topic in Year 1, which includes learning about our Royal family and writing letters to the Queen
  • Learning about and commemorating key dates in the British calendar eg Saints’ days, Burn’s Night and Remembrance Day
  • Learning about important events in British history eg The Stone, Bronze and Iron Age (Year 6), The Anglo Saxon and Vikings (Year 5), The Tudors (Year 4), the Romans (Year 3), the Victorians (Year 3)
  • Holding a British Values Week to embed understanding (18th-22nd April 2016)
  • Supporting our National teams during sporting events, like the Olympics and World Cup, through activities and assemblies
  • Singing traditionally British songs eg the National Anthem and Sing by Gary Barlow
  • Through artwork and displays eg our Union Flag collage which was created by the whole school community during our British Values Week.

Journey togetherGuided by GodTo do the best we can