Promoting British Values
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 by the Prime Minister this year. At St Luke’s these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is rife within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our Pupil Council and Pupil questionnaires. Many activities across the curriculum have outcomes that are voted for by the pupils including voting for choices of prize when awarded whole class/group rewards. Year 5 discuss and experience the process and place of democratic law making when visiting the Houses of Parliament. This year, all stakeholders in the school have been involved in the proposal, shortlisting and voting for a Motto to epitomise what St Luke’s stands for: Aspire Believe Achieve.
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 worship. 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 and to authorities such as the Police; Fire Service and Road Safety, are regular parts of our calendar and 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 safety, through the provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advise how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons/family groups. Whether it be through choice of challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Part of our school mission statement focusses on Core Values such as ‘Respect’, and pupils have been part of discussions and worship related to what this means and how it is shown. Respect for others is promoted through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our behaviour policy.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
We are a Christian school where the importance of tolerance, understanding and kindness are taught with skill and dedication and integrated into every aspect of the school life. For example through Values themes in worship; through focusing and raising money for charities in UK and overseas aid; through development of pupils to lead and care for one another; through bringing parents together to meet and learn as part of our school community; through empasising the importance of knowing about each other’s differences in order to remove stereotypes and barriers.
As a school we belong to a very diverse local community. At St Luke’s we strive to enhance pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society, by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Worship and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in RE and PSHE. The school has a identified team of staff and a Home School Liasion Officer, who, as part of their role, visit and work with new arrival pupils and families to welcome them into the community; identifying their cultural and learning needs and helping them integrate and become familiar with the school community. Through RE and PSHE, members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge and culture, to enhance learning within classes and the school. Visits are arranged to local places of worship.