Promoting British Values at Templemoor Infant and Nursery School
The Department for Education (DFE) have 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 by the government in 2014.
At Templemoor Infant and Nursery School these values are reinforced through high quality teaching, a rounded programme of assemblies, a broad and balanced curriculum and a positive Behaviour Policy. Fundamental British values are also promoted through our Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC) development of children.
This gives children opportunities to develop and demonstrate skills and attitudes that will allow them to participate fully in and contribute positively to life in modern Britain.
Democracy underpins the values of our school. All children are treated fairly and have an equal right to express their views and be listened to. Children have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council, Pupil Conferencing and Pupil Surveys. Members of the School Council are elected democratically by their classmates in a yearly ballot which introduces them to the principal of democratic elections. The School Council have been involved in such things as fund raising ideas, planning school events and supporting anti bullying and e safety initiatives.
Classes take into account the views of the children and recently Templemoor held an election (coinciding with the General Election) to vote on new playground equipment. Children were chosen as party leaders and were asked to put together an election campaign. This process helped to teach the children about how the election system in our country works.
Children take part in class debates which focus on a range of topics. For example, Year 1 children have debated whether it would be best to live in a town or the countryside, and Year 2 children have debated whether a new supermarket should be built in Sale Moor.
Rule of Law
From entry to school, children are continually taught to recognise the difference between right and wrong and this, alongside their developing maturity, helps them to apply their understanding of these concepts in their daily lives.
We have a strong and positive Behaviour Policy. Through this we consistently promote our high expectations of all. Everyone is expected to follow our school rules. Children are taught the reasons behind school rules, taught the importance of observing our rules and what the consequences will be should they forget to follow any of the rules. The rewards for good behaviour and sanctions for unacceptable behaviour are reinforced regularly with the children.
Within our school children are encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment to enable them to do this. Through our SMSC sessions we discuss different choices that the children can make and encourage them to make the right choices. Our Behaviour Policy also gives an excellent forum for staff to discuss the choices that children make about their behaviour in school. It is used to encourage children to reflect on their choices and the effect that it has on both their peers and adults. They are given opportunities to resolve conflicts effectively and fairly. Through E-safety we teach the importance of keeping yourself safe by choosing not to share personal information.
Our whole school ethos is built around mutual respect and we believe that respect for others is a vital component of moral development. We are an inclusive school where it is acknowledged that everyone is valued and has a contribution to make to the school. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others.
We encourage open discussions in all areas but particularly in lessons which promote citizenship such as PSHE. Staff help children to understand how to respect by talking about how actions/words can affect others.
We actively support all children to develop their own reasoned views about moral and ethical issues through our topic work on themes such as the Brazilian Rainforests and the environment in our local area.
Our community involvement, such as collecting food donations for the Sale Food Bank and local charitable work for Francis House, The Wood Street Mission and NSPCC enables children to show respect and generosity to others outside our school community.
Tolerance of those of different Faiths and Beliefs
Assemblies are planned to give children the opportunity to reflect on a variety of beliefs, cultures and moral values. Our curriculum incorporates teaching and learning opportunities for children to explore aspects of the wider world and an appreciation of cultural diversity as in for example – Festivals, Divali and Chinese New Year. The RE curriculum is also carefully planned to equip children with the knowledge which will enable them to understand the diverse nature of peoples beliefs. We help children to understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity. We have recently held a Multi Faith week, which successfully celebrated the different faiths represented within our school.
At Templemoor Infant and Nursery School we will actively challenge children, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including 'extremist' views.
Preparing children for Life in Modern Britain
At Templemoor Infant and Nursery School we take very seriously our responsibility to prepare children for life in modern Britain. We ensure that the fundamental British Values are introduced, discussed and lived out through the ethos and work of the school. All curriculum areas provide a vehicle for furthering understanding of these concepts and in particular our RE and PSHE lessons provide excellent opportunities to deepen and develop understanding. Children embrace these concepts with enthusiasm and demonstrate a good understanding of their application in their own lives.
The school makes considerable efforts to ensure children have exposure to a wide experience in and beyond their local community during which these concepts are shown, through for example a range of visits and visitors such as visits to the local church or gurdwara, school events such as raising money for Comic Relief and our community involvement, such as taking part in the Sale Art Zoo. Their strong rooted values-based understanding gives our children an excellent platform for embracing differences.