The Department of Education has 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 Bourne these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is evident within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council and Parent Council.
They also complete annual Pupil questionnaires. School Council representatives in each class are voted for.
Our school behaviour policy involves lots of rewards but our marble jar reward system is based on pupils voting as a class group for their treat. As well as having voting opportunities there are also cases when children are selected by merit for special jobs e.g The house captains. This is also an important message.
Our Curriculum offers many opportunities to discuss democracy – The Romans, The Ancient Greeks. It allows us to consider events in history where British values have been tested, for example World War 1 & World War 2.
Cross curricular literacy work gives children opportunity to give their views, debate and argue, making well considered points and looking at both sides of an argument. A competitive spirit is also encouraged through our House system – e.g every child competes to earn points for their house at sports day.
The General Election
At Bourne we prepared for the General Election in 2015 by having a series of assemblies which introduced the idea of a General Election and democracy. We talked about the history of the UK parliament and how now the people had a chance to choose a new government. We talked about voting and how every child at Bourne had had the opportunity to vote for their school council representative. We likened this to voting for an MP. We talked about the main parties in the election – their name, representative colour and name of their leader.
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 Brigade and our Y6 Young Citizens day are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message.
Within school, 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 choices safety, through the provision of a safe environment.
Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advise how to exercise these safely, for example through our Anti-Bullying, E-Safety and PSHE lessons.
Whether it be through the choice of level of challenge, of how they record their work, how they record and show their homework, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Our six Bourne Learning Skills:
also help to give the children a sense of liberty and choice as we are helping them to learn ‘How’ to learn which we hope will help them be prepared for life beyond Bourne at secondary school and into adult life.
Part of our school ethos and behaviour policy has revolved around core values such as ‘Respect’, and pupils have been part of discussions and assemblies related to what this means and how it is shown. This is reiterated through our classroom rules, the High 5 and our behaviour policy.
Pupils are encouraged to have respect for themselves.
Whole school projects allow us to consider respect for each other in topics such as Black History Month. Our curriculum allows us to consider respect for our world, for example Rainforests and deforestation.
Each year we take part in anti- bullying week, and this reflects our anti-bullying policy and approach.
Every year we show respect for others by fund raising for. We have supported events such as Children in Need, Sports Relief, Save the Children, Red Nose day, Cancer charities, etc
Every year we celebrate Harvest and donate goods to the Eastbourne Salvation Army.
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity.
Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in RE and PSHE.
The school celebrates the many different languages which are spoken by our pupils and their families. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school.
Every class makes a visit each year to a place of worship linked to their RE topics. We celebrate other religions and faiths through music – singing songs from different festivals and in different languages.
At Bourne we like to celebrate the traditions and customs of all of our pupils. We also celebrate British traditions and customs in quite a big way.
Our Early Years Foundation Stage continue the tradition of learning nursery rhymes and our Year 1 children learn about traditional tales as part of their English work. They read lots of British traditional tales.
Throughout a school day we encourage orderly systems of lining up and queuing – after break time, when waiting for their lunch. We also try to encourage a traditional ‘family style’ way of eating at lunchtime with packed lunches and dinners sitting together and younger and older children sitting together chatting as they eat.
For example on 11th November every year we always have a two minute silence in the playground, and through assemblies, we think about why it is important to remember and we learn about Remembrance Sunday.