Promoting British Values at Rosebank Primary School
There is now an explicit expectation from the government and Ofsted that schools; ‘actively 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. (School Inspection Handbook September 2015).
At Rosebank, these elements form an integral part of our aims, ethos and values and are systematically developed in many ways through our school’s curriculum, organisation and routines.
Our School Drivers – Respectful Communicators, World Citizens, Resilient Individuals and Healthy Advocate ensure that British Values are incorporated throughout the day.
Pupils at Rosebank develop an early concept of democracy through the School Council, at which elected class members (voted for by all pupils) represent their peers. Pupil Voice has impacted visibly on recent school improvements such as the development of playground facilities and the revision of the Behaviour Policy: pupils can see the influence of pupils’ views on the school decision making process. Children also learn about Democracy in our weekly News Assemblies which highlight current events. In the Early Years, children are involved in making joint decisions and sharing their opinions, for example, voting for their favourite stories.
Recently, many of our children wrote letters to Leeds City Council to share their views on planning applications which were going to effect the local area. Their views were considered by the school council and affected decisions made by the local council. This gave the children a real understanding of democracy in practice.
The Rule of Law
School rules are clearly understood by pupils and are reinforced by a consistently applied whole school behaviour policy, which clearly outlines both positive and negative consequences.
All pupils are involved in the negotiation of individual classroom rules at the start of each year, when the rationale behind rules is explored, along with a discussion of consequences in the event of rules not being observed. This process is reinforced in PSHCE lessons.
An appreciation of the rule of law in society is cultivated through visitors, e.g. community police workers, themed assemblies and the curriculum.
The school ethos reinforces the rights of all pupils to exist in a safe environment where they are free to learn.
Our curriculum planning is explicitly designed to give pupils the freedom to influence the direction of their own learning through the systematic incorporation of child-initiated ideas.
PSHCE teaching develops an understanding of pupils’ rights and the increasing entitlement to self-determination in their lives, linked to an awareness of the responsibility to respect the rights of others.
Enhancement activities are specifically aimed at broadening horizons and raising aspirations.
The study of key historical figures and events, develops an understanding of the preciousness of individual liberty and the sacrifices that have been made in its name. Staff are trained in the Prevent strategy, and are aware of how radicalisation may be identified and tackled.
Mutual Respect and Tolerance of those of different Faiths and Beliefs
Celebration of diversity is at the forefront of our rich curriculum, with pupils of all ages introduced to the variety of world culture, which reflects the school population. Our close proximity to the University of Leeds provides the opportunity to regularly welcome new pupils from across the globe. These celebrations are clearly identifiable through community events (e.g. Our Multi Cultural Feast) and focus weeks (e.g. Multi Cultural week)
The RE curriculum and assemblies introduce pupils to the beliefs and celebrations of different faith groups, with an approach that explores the commonality of human experience alongside a respect for difference. Places of worship for main religions are visited, and similarities and differences identified.