Promoting British Values at St Bede’s Catholic Primary School Jarrow.
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 Bede’s, these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is promoted throughout the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our Pupil Council and pupil questionnaires. Our school Behaviour Policy involves rewards and sanctions which the pupils understand and reinforce.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of laws, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, is consistently reinforced throughout our regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. Pupils are taught about the value and reasons behind the 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, Fire Service and Lifeguards etc. 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 so that our pupils can 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 they are advised on how to exercise these safely; for example, through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons. Our pupils are given the freedom to make choices through challenge, how they keep records and how they participate in our extra-curricular clubs and opportunities.
Part of our school ethos and Behaviour Policy revolves around Core Values such as ‘Respect’, and our pupils have been part of discussions and assemblies relating to what this means and how it is shown. Our school promotes respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our Behaviour Policy.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
This is achieved by enhancing the pupils’ understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in RE and PSHE. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. Each term, our RE programme focuses on other faiths – Judaism and Islam – and we celebrate and respect these faiths. Our children and staff have visited local synagogues and mosques to experience the similarities and differences.