Our Christian Values
British Values at St Thomas’ Moorside
What does “British Values” mean?
The Department for Education requires schools to promote British values to ensure young people leave school prepared for life in modern Britain.
All schools have a duty to ‘actively promote’ the fundamental British Values. These values are comprised of:
- The rule of law
- Individual liberty
- Mutual respect for, and tolerance of, those with different faiths and beliefs and for those without faith.
Schools are required to ensure that children become valuable and fully rounded members of society who treat others with respect and tolerance, regardless of background. At the Dove-Shell Federation we fully support this- we want our children to leave school understanding the importance of respect and fully prepared for life in modern Britain.
Examples of the understanding and knowledge pupils are expected to learn include:
– an understanding of how citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process
– an understanding that the freedom to hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law
– an acceptance that people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none) should be accepted and tolerated, and should not be the cause of prejudicial or discriminatory behaviour
– an understanding of the importance of identifying and combatting discrimination
In the Dove-Shell Federation British Values are promoted and reinforced regularly, in the following ways:
We have a School Council which is made up of two children from each class, Reception to Year 6, The School councillors are elected by their classmates, through an election process to. School council meetings are held within each school on a regular basis, the children in both schools councils meet together from time to time and they meet with the Governing body annually. In addition, children participate in pupil voice meetings with relevant staff to share their views on the school and curriculum. Perhaps most importantly through our open door policy children can come and raise their concerns at anytime with the headteacher/ Senior leadership team.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced within the Dove-Shell Federation. Pupils are taught from an early age the expectations and rules of the school, through the use of our Golden Promises, which underpin our ‘Always system.’
These are as follows:
- We always show respect for everyone in our school.
- We always do as we are asked first time.
- We always look after our own property and that of others.
- We always behave in a way that allows us and others to learn and do our best.
- We always think about the health and safety of others when moving around school.
The ‘Always’ system as been adopted as the key feature of the schools’ behaviour management system. In each classroom there is an Always chart. These have five incremental steps that children move up. There is one incremental step for each Golden Promise. Children move up the chart one step at a time as they demonstrate the use of our Golden Promises. If however they show inappropriate behaviour then they move down one step on the chart. When a child reaches the top of the chart they receive an Always Badge from either a senior leader or key-stage leader, their achievement is celebrated with this person. Children with Always badges should be rewarded with jobs and special things during the school day.
Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind rules and 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 and Fire Service help reinforce this message. Rules are also covered in the work that the school does to promote fair play in sport and the value of sportsmanship. This is evident when sporting events are reported on. The attitude of the participants are celebrated and valued as much as the result.
In the Dove-Shell Federation 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 informed choices, through a safe environment and an empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our P4C, e-Safety and Christian Values lessons.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect. One of our Golden Promises reads: ‘We always show respect for everyone in our school.’
We actively promote diversity through R.E lessons and our celebrations of different faiths and cultures. This is evident in the theme days where the festivals of many religions are recognised and celebrated. Religious Education lessons and Christian Values lessons also reinforce these messages of tolerance and respect for others. Members of different faiths and religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. The children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths.