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 Pelham these values are planned, delivered and reinforced regularly through a broad and balanced curriculum including within PSHE and RE, but also through the ethos of the school as a Rights Respecting School and in the following ways:
Democracy is a concept and quality that is explicit in many aspects of our school life.
At the beginning of each year, two children from each class are voted to represent their class on the School Council. The School Council meets regularly ensuring children are able to express their views.
Pelham is a Rights Respecting School, which means the UNICEF Rights of the Child underpin the school’s values and ethos. Once a year all the children within each class decide upon their Class Charter and their rights and responsibilities associated with these.
Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through the annual pupil questionnaire.
House Captains, from Year 6, are voted in at the beginning of each academic year.
School Council member have the opportunity to visits the Mayor’s Office and Year 6 undertake a trip to the Houses of Parliament and the Law Courts.
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. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message. The Junior Citizenship Day, for Year 6, allows children to see the importance of following rules for individuals and others.
Individual classes are involved at the beginning of each new academic year in creating a charter or set of agreed rules for their class. These are displayed, referred to, discussed and adhered to.
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 a provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and informed how to exercise these safely, for example through our online-Safety and PSHE lessons. 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.
As a Rights Respecting School, mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect. Core Values such as courtesy, consideration, care and respect are embodied in all areas of school life.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Pelham is a culturally diverse community. This is celebrated and enhanced through a rich curriculum and through our collective acts of worship. Our detailed curriculum for RE, as well as topics that develop an understanding of other cultures and parts of the world, ensures a varied experience for all children. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. Children visit a full range of places of worship.
The school holds a very successful and popular “Diversity Day”, where children can experience culture, customs and food represented throughout the school.
The school teaches Modern Foreign Languages. They run throughout the year and across all year groups. Year 6 children have the opportunity to visit France and experience the culture there.