Promoting British Values at New Haw Community School
In November 2014, the Department for Education (DfE) produced non-statutory guidance on how schools should 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 as part of spiritual, moral, social, and cultural (SMSC) development. These core British values were first articulated in the Government’s ‘Prevent’ strategy of 2011.
At New Haw Community School we take very seriously our responsibility to prepare children positively for life in modern Britain. We ensure that the fundamental British values are introduced, discussed and lived through the ethos, values and work of the school. All curriculum areas provide a vehicle for furthering understanding of these concepts and, in particular, our RE, SMSC and PSHE lessons provide excellent opportunities to deepen and develop understanding.
The school makes considerable efforts to ensure children have exposure to a wide experience beyond their local community during which these concepts are shown, for example, sporting events, a wide range of visits and use of a residential outdoor education centre.
The DfE defines British Values as:
- The Rule of Law
- Individual Liberty
- Mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
Democracy is a strong theme within our school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard formally through our School Council as well as informally through class discussions, debates and an open culture where opinions and views of others are respected. At New Haw elections are held within classes for School Council representatives and then across the school for the positions of Chair and Secretary. Elections are also held for Games and House Captains and the results are based solely upon pupil votes. This was designed to reflect the British electoral system.
The Rule of Law
The importance of rules to keep us safe are consistently reinforced throughout each school day. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind rules, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when rules are broken. Tye children discuss and set their own rules for behaviour inside and outside of the classroom; this ensures that they are relevant and clearly understood by all.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in safe and supportive environment. Our children are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely through many curriculum subjects, particularly in PSHE and e-safety lessons.
Respect is an important value to the children and staff of New Haw Community School and it is deeply embedded in learning and behaviour. Children understand that it is expected and that it is imperative that respect is shown to everyone. It underpins our work every day, both in and out of the classroom.
Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
The celebration of our differences is a key theme at New Haw. We aim to enhance our pupils’ understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and give them opportunities to experience such diversity. Assemblies and discussions about diversity are supported by learning in RE and PSHE. Within school, members of different faiths or religions are also encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school.
New Haw serves a multi-faith community where each person is respected and valued equally without regard to ability, gender, faith, heritage or race. The need for mutual respect is embedded throughout the school. All members of the school community treat each other with respect.