Promoting British Values in School
In 2011, the government set out its definition of British values in the ‘Prevent Strategy’ document.
More recently the definition has been reiterated by the government who have challenged schools to actively reinforce those values to their pupils.
The DfE should “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.”
At Kennington Primary School we actively encourage children to take part in our school council elections. The process is explained each year and children are taught about how the process is used to fairly elect leaders in many countries around the world. The children who are elected onto the school council represent the voice of their classmates and are involved in many of the decisions that affect them in school. For example they canvased opinions regarding the new names for the house teams, created a short list and voted on the ones they thought would be best.
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. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind 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.
The freedom to make the right choices plays an important part of everyday school life at Kennington Primary School. From simple choices, such as what to have for lunch from the choices available in the kitchen, to who the children play with and how, all form part of learning about individual liberty. Freedom of choice comes in many forms at Kennington with a range of after school clubs to choose from, what equipment to play with at lunch time and the choice of who to play with. The children are also taught about the responsibility that comes with freedom of choice through PHSE lessons, 'I can' themes and lessons about internet safety. We feel we provide a secure environment so that children are able to make choices safely.
Mutual respect forms part of the ethos behind our ‘3 Promises’ at Kennington. These are ‘I promise to let everyone learn. I promise to help everyone feel safe. I promise to treat others the way I want to be treated.’ Children are taught that their own actions and behaviours can have an effect on others and so they must think carefully before they act. We promote mutual respect between the pupils themselves, between the staff and pupils and also between the staff themselves. We expect all staff to be good role models in this respect.
Tolerance of those of different Faiths and Beliefs
Kennington is situated at the heart of a multi-faith community with children coming from backgrounds with a range of diverse beliefs. Assemblies are planned to address these issues either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. Our RE and PSHE teaching reinforce this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. Children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths.