In 2011, the Government set out its definition of British Values through the Prevent strategy. These values were reiterated in 2014 as the DFE reinforced the need to, ‘‘to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation for 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 Lower Farm Academy we are dedicated to ensuring that our pupils develop a strong sense of social and moral responsibility and are proud that these values are well established within our school. The British Values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty mutual respect and tolerance, which are part of this, are clearly promoted through our whole school ethos, core values and taught curriculum.
How do we promote British Values?
Pupil Voice is an extremely important part of school life and at the heart of our school; ensuring that pupils have a say in what happens in our school. We will develop an active School Parliament that is elected by the children each year. They will meet regularly to discuss aspects of learning and school life, as well as how they can be developed. Pupil Voice is also heard in other ways, such as termly pupil interviews and questionnaires. Democracy is also studied through the school curriculum.
The Rule of Law
At Lower Farm Academy we strive to ensure that our children recognise their responsibility to be law abiding citizens. Through assemblies, our curriculum and whole school ethos children gain a sound understanding of why we need rules and laws and the consequences of them being broken. Visits from authorities such the Police and Fire Service help reinforce this message. Whether they be those that govern the class, the school or the country rules are consistently reinforced in school.
Pupils have a voice, helping to create rules, whether that is playground rules, safety rules, class rules or whole school behaviour rules. Pupils are taught, from Reception, the rules within our school and the value and reasons behind them. To encourage and promote good behaviour and a positive attitude to work, we have developed a behaviour/reward system that is constantly followed throughout the school.
Alongside rules and laws, we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. 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 pupils to make choices safely, through a planned curriculum. Safeguarding is embedded within all aspects of school life therefore, within the realms of individual liberty and exercising their rights and personal freedoms, children are also taught the importance of keeping themselves safe. This includes personal safety and e-safety. Pupils are given the freedom to make choices, e.g. signing up for extracurricular clubs and choosing the level of challenge or how to present their work in some lessons.
Pupils 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 and we work together to help one another.
Tolerance of those of different Faiths and Beliefs
Mutual Respect is at the heart of our core values and through our curriculum we actively promote a sound understanding of different faiths and cultures. Our children demonstrate great spirituality and naturally show interest and curiosity about different cultures and religions. Through our RE, PSHE and SRE curriculum we actively discuss issues that arise and promote the acceptance of differences of faith, ethnicity, disability, gender or sexuality to reinforce the messages of tolerance and respect for others as well raise awareness of issues around bullying and prejudice.
We actively challenge pupil’s parents and staff who express views contrary to those stated.