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 by the Prime Minister. At Nursery Hill Primary School, these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is an important value at our school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our regular school council meetings where our school councillors gather the views and opinions of our children.
Pupils are actively encouraged to make choices at our school, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we provide boundaries for our children to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and planned curriculum. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our e-Safety teaching. Pupils are given the freedom to make choices, e.g. creative homework tasks.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of laws and rules, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced through all aspects of school life.
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, fire service etc. are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message.
Much of our school ethos and behaviour policy revolves around Core Values, ‘Respect’ being one of these. Through discussions and assemblies, we explore what this means and how this can be shown to others. Respect is promoted around the school and is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules; our daily conversations and expectations as well as through our behaviour policies.
British Values and the Curriculum
This is underpinned by a range of curriculum topics which have strong links to the British Empire.
Some examples studied to promote ‘British Values’ are: learning about the make-up of the United Kingdom, the chronology of British History including knowledge and understanding of key events, people and the impact which they have had on our society, World War Two, Poppy Day celebrations where children purchase poppies and observe a minute's silence, visit to the local war memorial, special 'heroes' (notable people) who have made a real difference to society such as Florence Nightingale and pioneers of science, the arts and technology. As a whole school, we have celebrated many events which celebrate British patriotisms.
Upon leaving Nursery Hill Primary School, pupils will understand their responsibilities as citizens of a democratic society and have an awareness of how by they can maintain the underpinning core British values whilst maintaining an awareness and respect for the culturally diverse society in which they live.