The DfE have stated the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values”. The DfE says that the government’s five-part definition of ‘British Values’, as set out in its 2011 Prevention Strategy, is:
- the rule of law
- individual liberty
- mutual respect
- tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
We have embedded these values throughout our school, both within and beyond the curriculum.?
British Values in our Curriculum
Our PSHE curriculum has 6 key areas, including Rights and Responsibilities, where children build their knowledge and understanding of the rule of law and democracy. In KS1 this looks at school rules and protecting our local environment. In Year 3 children focus on volunteering and the important role volunteers play in society. In Year 4, children learn about our rights and responsibilities in society and start thinking about democracy and decision-making processes. This is further built upon in Year 5 through our duties within society, leading to children having an excellent knowledge and understanding of the rule of law, democracy, and the consequences involved in not following our societies laws and rules.
Through Keeping Myself Safe unit of work children learn about individual liberty and how to keep themselves safe, how to exercise their personal rights and freedoms, as well as learning how to keep themselves safe online.
The Valuing Differences unit begins with children thinking about differences and similarities between people, for example, what makes a good friend, different types of families, all leading to children understanding the importance of mutual respect, tolerance, and acceptance. This is also further enhanced through the Locally Agreed Religious Education Syllabus, where children learn about different faiths and beliefs and understand the importance of tolerance of respects for other people’s beliefs and religions.
Beyond the Curriculum
- Every year, children vote for their school councillor as they begin to understand how voting and democracy works. Children learn the importance of carefully considering their vote, and the impact their vote can have. The School Council then meets regularly making decisions and taking feedback from their peers.
- Visits from authorities such as the police and fire services reinforce the importance of the rule of law.
- Our school values are all about empowering children through being connected, raising aspirations, feeling valued.
- 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.
- Children are given the freedom to make choices through a number of areas, such choosing their own level of challenge, how they record their work, complete home learning, or of participation in extra-curricular clubs and opportunities.
- School assemblies are timetabled to specifically focus on key areas regarding British Values, with children across the school learning about the values and their importance in a variety of ways. Assemblies also cover key religious festivals across the year along with themes regarding friendship, tolerance and respect. (Please see Assembly rota).