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- The Rule of Law.
- Individual liberty.
- Mutual Respect and Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.
These are key aspects for our children’s social development so that they can take part appropriately in today’s society and to help shape that of the future.
At St Mary’s we help foster and develop these British values by;
Pupil School Council; Each year children are given the opportunity to stand as a school councillor. They have to take part in ‘hustings’ where they share with their class reasons why they should be elected. Class elections are held to select one boy and one girl from each class. Our deputy-head, Miss Gilliver, holds at least half-termly meetings to discuss key topics to help improve our school. These have included; healthy-eating, the impact of the new national curriculum and behaviour in school. Two representatives from the School council took part in interviewing three catering companies to help us review our catering contract. This year they will need to make a decision on developing a new adventure playground area.
The Rule of Law:
As a school we have clear aims that we look to achieve and a clear behaviour policy that sets out our ‘rights’ and ‘responsibilities’. ‘Acceptable’ and ‘Unacceptable’ behaviour is made clear as are the rewards and sanctions that recognise and hold us to account for our actions. We aim to replicate the British justice system of ‘innocent until proven guilty’ in which children get a chance to have their say in which honesty is recognised and reflected in any sanctions that may be set. Assemblies and class sessions both pro-actively and re-actively focus on this area and include links to our Christian character through study of Moses and the Ten Commandments.
Our children are actively encouraged to make choices within a safe and supportive environment. Children develop and sign up to class aims and a ‘charter of rights’ that help to protect and foster individual liberty. Children have opportunity to make choices in their learning where teachers will use, as appropriate, strategies that enable and guide children to select the level of challenge in tasks. Children and parents are also faced with a wide variety of choices of clubs and activities outside of school hours to allow freedoms to explore their own interests. E-safety and related agreements help to protect the school community beyond the classroom and outside of school hours.
Mutual Respect and Tolerance:
Children are taught through collective worship, Religious Education and the PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic) curriculum the importance of respecting other peoples’ faiths and beliefs whether linked to religion or not. The school aims related to ‘Christian Values’, ‘Equal Opportunities’ and ‘Caring Community’ supports a school ethos that recognises inclusiveness and diversity. Mutual respect and tolerance of other peoples views and actions are encouraged where there is no infringement of ‘individual liberty’ or at odds with ‘the rule of law’.
At St Mary’s we will actively challenge children, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values including ‘extremist’ views. ‘Behaviour’, ‘Anti-bullying’, ‘Racist incident’ and ‘Child protection’ policies give guidance on how to deal with potential issues. The staff ‘Bullying and harassment’ policy along with ‘Disciplinary’ and ‘Capability’ procedures further support the tackling of such views.