The DFE has 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, 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 were reiterated by the Prime Minister in 2014. At Keep Hatch these values are central to the children’s education through the delivery of a rich curriculum. British Values are reinforced regularly in the following ways:
Children, parents and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard at Keep Hatch Primary School. Democracy is central to how we operate. An obvious example is our School Council. The election of the School Council members reflects our British electoral system and demonstrates democracy in action: candidates prepare a manifesto and make speeches, pupils consider characteristics important for an elected representative and vote in secret using ballot boxes.
Made up of representatives from Year 6, the School Council meets regularly to discuss issues raised by the different classes.
Throughout the school, pupils are always listened to by adults. They 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.
The rule of law
The importance of rules and laws, whether they are those that govern our school or our country, are referred to and reinforced often. Celebration assemblies reflect on behaviour choices.
At Keep Hatch, every child is aware of and follows our five golden rules:
- remember that everyone is special
- listen carefully
- take care of things around you
- concentrate on your task
- be kind and help each other
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. These values are reinforced in different ways including visits from authorities such as the police and fire service, through Religious Education, when rules for particular faiths are thought about and during other school subjects, where there is respect and appreciation for different rules – in a sports lesson, for example. The importance of rules is reinforced in lessons and through our school’s behaviour policy.
Alongside rules and laws, we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. Through the provision of a safe, supportive environment and empowering education, we provide boundaries for our young pupils to make choices safely; for example:
- choices about what learning challenge or activity
- choices about how they record their learning
- choices around the participation in extra-curricular activities
Our pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are taught about how to do this safely, such as in our e-safety lessons.
At Keep Hatch we are proud to promote and celebrate our different backgrounds and beliefs. Self-respect and respect for others lie at the heart of our core values and underpin our behaviour system. It is modelled and required in every lesson and interaction with pupils. Our rich curriculum allows ample opportunity for children to work collaboratively with others, learning to respect one another. Our pupils know and understand that it is expected and imperative that respect is shown to everyone, whatever differences we may have, and to everything.
Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
We encourage our children to learn from each other by sharing and celebrating their different faiths and cultures. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within lessons. RE and PSHE lessons help us to embed our ethos of tolerance and understanding.