The idea of promoting British values is considered extremely important within our diverse and welcoming school. The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy, reiterating them again in 2014. Children in our school are expected to learn about the following:
At Caedmon, we share and respect these values and ideas, promoting them in a variety of ways in our curriculum and ethos.
Children at Caedmon have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We have a school council that meets regularly to discuss issues raised in their classes and throughout the other areas of school life. Elections are held anonymously within classes, following discussions around what makes a good leader and good/bad reasons to vote for someone. The School Council visit London during the summer term, to make links between democracy at a local (school) level and how this translates to a grander scale at a national level. Experiencing first hand the traditions and history of the Houses of Parliament and Westminster helps to put into context the importance of freedom of choice for individuals when electing others to represent them.
The 2015 General Election provided opportunities to explore democracy in other, more specific ways: these ranged from whole school assemblies with a focus on choosing appropriate representatives through to older children discovering how ideas are presented to the public via manifestos, with the intention of securing support to become democratically elected.
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 our school day. This includes regular informal conversations between adults and children, as well as dealing with collective ideas of acceptable behaviour through school assemblies. Demonstrations of acceptable behaviours are rewarded via the school's 'Monster Point' system.
Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws/rules that govern and protect us, the responsibilities this brings and the consequences when these are not followed. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service help reinforce this message.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make their own choices, knowing they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school, we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safely, via provision of a secure, consistent environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely and respectfully, for example through e-safety or PSHE lessons. The types of options open to children are varied, including choices with some learning challenges, how they record their thinking or participation in extra-curricular clubs and opportunities.
As a UNICEF Rights Respecting school, mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community strive to treat each other with respect, with older members of our community (including older children) expected to lead by example.
Tolerance of Faiths and Beliefs
Caedmon is situated in an area that is extremely culturally diverse. Therefore, we place an increased emphasis on promoting diversity with the children, this may be through different religious views or raising awareness and an acceptance of what LGBTQ is. Assemblies are regularly planned to address this issue and have included visits from religious leaders within our community to broaden the children's understanding of other faiths and cultures. This is further supported by RE, PSHE and SMSC teaching. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school generally. Children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths.
At Caedmon we will actively challenge pupils, staff, parents, governors or others expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British values, including any manner of 'extremist' views.