Promoting British Values at Rickmansworth Park School Updated October 2017
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. At Rickmansworth Park School, these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is actively promoted across the school. Pupils regularly have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council. Our councillors are chosen through a whole school election – the children voting for the candidates (two per class across both KS1 and KS2). In June 2017, the School Council visited the Houses of Parliament for a guided tour. Pupil questionnaires are frequently used by Subject Leaders and the Leadership Team to prioritise actions and assess the impact/success of strategies and change. This year, the school has established a steering group to launch the Rights Respecting Schools Award. Also new to the 2017/18 academic year are the elected roles of Head Boy, Head Girl, Team Leaders and Digital Leaders. Where appropriate, the class vote to elect their Star of the Week.
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. All pupils were involved in creating the School Charter and this is promoted through assemblies, displays and discussions. A copy of the class rules are displayed in each classroom. 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. Online Safety is embedded in the curriculum throughout the school. We are lucky to have a CEOP ambassador on our staff who leads training for pupils, staff and the wider community. Visits from authorities such as the Magistrate, Police and Fire Service begin in YR and help to reinforce this message. Every class uses a similar model to reward positive behaviour.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. A key part of the Right Respecting Schools Award teaches children to know and understand their rights and the rights of others. Pupils are encouraged to know and understand their rights and personal freedoms. In PSHE and online safety lessons, the children are taught how to exercise these freedoms safely. Pupil choice is encouraged. This begins with child initiated learning in EYFS and leads on to further opportunities for pupil choice in following years e.g. how they record, which reading books they choose and who they work with. This year, the school has introduced the band system at lunchtimes which gives the children even greater autonomy. The number and variety of extra-curricular clubs offered by the school provides pupils with the freedom to make further choices. Care is taken to provide equal opportunities for all.
Our school ethos and Behaviour Policy reflect the principles of the Rights Respecting Schools programme. When creating our School Charter, the views of the children were paramount. All adults are mindful about promoting respect for others. Pupils play a key role as role models for respectful behaviour. All Upper Key Stage 2 children are Buddies to younger members of the school. Year 6 children also take on important roles as Head Boy and Girl, Team Leaders, Digital Leaders, Lunchtime Helpers, Play Leaders and Monitors. The rich and varied curriculum teaches the children to value and celebrate differences in others and themselves. The school participates in Anti-Bullying Week. Within the Schools Sports Partnership, all children at Rickmansworth Park School participate in a wide variety of sporting events. This ensures that children experience competitive events and have an opportunity to apply their sportsmanship skills with other schools.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
Rickmansworth Park follows the Hertfordshire RE syllabus which ensures that the children learn about the major world religions. The Rights Respecting Schools programme also supports this British Value through regular whole school assemblies. These lessons and assemblies enhance pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society. We celebrate both the languages spoken by our EAL pupils and the experiences of children of all faiths. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. We invite religious leaders into the school to lead assemblies and our assembly themes celebrate the special days of different religions. Where possible, the school organises visits to a range of religious buildings. Multi-cultural stories, in both the school library and classrooms, allow children access to a wide range of beliefs.