The 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 have been reiterated in 2014.
At Our Lady of Hartley, these values are planned, delivered and reinforced regularly through a broad and balanced curriculum including within RHE and RE but also through the ethos of the school in the following ways:
At Our Lady of Hartley, Children, parents/carers and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard: Democracy is central to how we operate.
Pupils are involved in democratic processes, e.g. at the start of each academic year, two children from each class are voted to represent their class on the School Council. The School Council meets bi-termly ensuring children are able to express their views.
The school values pupil voice and we ask the pupils about their learning, their concerns and for their ideas about how we can make things better for them. We do this by using pupil questionnaires and small group sessions.
Parents are able to voice their ideas and opinions at the Parent Forum meetings. These meetings were introduced in 2017 to allow parents more of an opportunity to contribute, engage and shape school life.
At Our Lady of Hartley, we discuss the importance of rules and laws at a variety of levels including those that govern our school right up to those that govern our country. These laws are refered to and reinforced regularly such as in assemblues and whe reflecting on behaviuour choices.
Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws (to govern and protect us), the responsibilities that this involves, and the consequences when laws are broken.
These values are reinforced in different ways:
During RHE lessons when we use a range resources to promote moral, spiritual, social and cultural awareness among our pupils.
Visits from authorities such as the police and fire service
During other school subjects, where there is respect and appreciation for different rules – in a sports lesson, for example.
At the start of the school year, each class discusses and set their own class rules that are chosen, discussed and understood by all and seen to be necessary to ensure that every class member is able to learn in a safe and ordered environment. These are displayed, referred to, discussed and adhered to.
Link to behaviour policy
Alongside rules and laws, at Our Lady of Hartley we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. Through the provision of a safe, supportive environment and empowering education, we provide boundaries for our young pupils to make choices safely.
Our 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 RHE lessons.
At Our Lady of Hartley, adults actively model respect with one another, and with the children, in how we speak and treat one another. Children learn that their behaviour choices have an effect on their own rights and those of others. Our Behaviour Policy encompasses respecting others.
At Our Lady of Hartley, we celebrate our culturally diversity. We also ensure that children are aware of different cultures and beliefs that they might not be exposed to within the local area. Through our R.E curriculum, we promote an awareness of different faiths and we encourage our pupils to recognise and understand these faiths.
Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school and each year one class visits the Gurdwara in Gravesend.
We use assemblies, workshops and themed weeks, i.e. Anti-Bullying Week to raise and discuss issues of bullying and prejudice and reinforce learning during curriculum time.