Teaching British values
Promoting British Values at Bridgtown Primary School
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. All the staff have received training in the Prevent Strategy.
British values are promoted in so much of what we do, not least during our School Assemblies, Religious Education PSHE/Jigsaw sessions. At Bridgtown Primary School these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Pupils are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen carefully and with concern to each other, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinions and voices heard. We encourage pupils to take ownership of not only their school but also of their own learning and progress. This encourages a heightened sense of both personal and social responsibility and is demonstrated on a daily basis by our pupils. Children have an opportunity to be listened to and express their own opinions about school life through pupil voice.
We also have a school council. Children will complete application forms and campaign for votes. Within each class, pupils have the opportunity to place their votes in a ballot box. The School Council meets fortnightly to discuss issues raised by the different classes. Children take part in a ‘Democracy week’ each child will have the opportunity to learn about the democratic process and how they can influence decision-making through a democratic vote. The highlight of this week will be a visit from a local Member of Parliament. The children will take part in and questions and answer session. The MP will also have the opportunity to discuss with the School Council how democracy works within 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 at Bridgtown Primary School. Pupils are taught from an early age the rules of the school. 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.
These values are reinforced in different ways:
- visits from authorities such as the police and fire service
- during Religious Education, when rules for particular faiths are thought about
- during other school subjects, where there is respect and appreciation for different rules – in a sports lesson, for example
Each year the children also decide upon their class rules. All the children contribute to the drawing up of the rules. A class contract is drawn up, that all children and staff sign to say they agree.
At Bridgtown Primary 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 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 E-Safety and PSHE lessons.
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 treat each other with respect. Children are encouraged to be respectful to each other, staff and members of the community.
Mental Health Ambassadors
To encourage and support children create healthy friendships when playing in the playground, Mental health Ambassadors are elected in years 2, 4 and 6. Their responsibility is to encourage children to play fairly and to be kind and inclusive. Training will be given to the elected MHA by the school’s designated Educational Mental Health Practioner.
Within the classroom, children are encouraged to apply for a class job. They are responsible for completing this job daily and have the opportunity to win ‘Employee of the week’.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
We seek to ensure that our curriculum allows children to understand more about the religions, culture and history of our local area and our country.
We develop links with the wider world and aim to ensure that children are also able to see the importance of their place in the wider community.
British Values is a key part of a weekly Jigsaw lessons: Jigsaw links to British Values.