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 were reiterated in 2014. At Drapers Mills Primary Academy these values are supported regularly in the following ways:
The ability to communicate is the most important area of learning. At Drapers Mills Primary Academy School we ensure that pupils are given a ‘voice’ to communicate. We empower our pupils by giving them opportunities to make choices about the things that they believe to be important. By valuing each ‘voice’ and by listening and responding to that voice we demonstrate that we support democracy and liberty.
Children have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We have a school council which meets regularly to discuss issues raised in school. The council is able to genuinely effect change within the school. Council members for each year group are voted in by their class.
Children have an annual questionnaire with which they are able to put forward their views about the 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 throughout regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. 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. Pupils are helped to learn to manage their behaviour and take responsibility for their actions.
Staff are committed to providing a consistent environment within the school and beyond. We can help some pupils to understand the connection between actions and consequences. This type of environment enables pupils to feel safe and secure; this in turn, promotes the optimum conditions for learning to take place.
Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service 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 safely, through provision of a safe environment and 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. Whether it be through choice of learning challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices. Learning to do things independently is an important part of learning to understand yourself. At Drapers Mills Primary Academy we believe that by engendering a caring and helpful environment and by teaching pupils to be independent can boost and nurture a healthy self-esteem.
Respect is one of our Academies 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.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Drapers Mills Primary Academy serves a multi-faith community where each person is respected and valued equally without regard to ability, gender, faith, heritage or race.
Cultural appreciation and development forms part of our curriculum. We place great emphasis on providing encounters and participation in events and celebrations to broaden all pupils’ experiences and awareness of others. Assemblies and topics are regularly planned to address this issue either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. Our RE and PSHE teaching reinforce this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school.