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 MOSPS these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Each year the children decide upon their class charter/ rules and the rights associated with these. All the children contribute to drawing this up with their class teacher/s.
Children have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We have a new system called ‘Democratic Circles’. This is a termly meeting of a circle of pupils (vertical year group mixings) that discuss a given pupil voice issue. Every child in the school participates, ensuring meaningful pupil voice across the school that promotes actual positive change.
Children have an annual questionnaire with which they are able to put forward their views about the school. There are also more informal questionnaires on different issues throughout the school year.
Our school’s Global Ethos empowers pupils to be active campaigners and global citizens. Our young Eco Warriors have helped implement many green initiatives at the school, earning us a prestigious Green Flag award. Pupils often practice their democratic right by writing to MPs about local and national issues such as Plastic Pollution.
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. MOSPS ‘Golden Rules’ are embedded into the ethos of the school. 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 and Fire Service help reinforce this message.
Pupils have the opportunity to lead in the school by becoming Play Leaders, Golden Mile Leaders, Forest Play Leaders, Freedom to Learn Ambassadors and Eco Warriors.
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 safely, through provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our NSPCC workshops, E-Safety, SRE and PSHE lessons. Whether it be through choice of learning challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
‘Taking responsibility and making choices' is part of our outdoor curriculum. Forest Schools learn skills like, backwoods cooking, fire-lighting and whittling. They learn to have the upmost respect for their environment and how to risk assess activities, so that they are safe.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values at MOSPS. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect. Living and learning our Christian values of Love, Trust and Truth and showing the qualities of a MOSP learner: Positive, Independent, Active, Adaptable, Tolerant, Determined, Resilient, Resourceful, Outward-looking and Caring.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
At MOSPS we place a great emphasis on promoting diversity with the children. Assemblies are regularly planned to address this issue either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. Our RE, PSHE and Global teaching reinforces this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. Children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths. Our involvement in the ‘Freedom to Learn’ project has developed a strong link with our sister school in Nepal – Kushadevi Primary School. We have regular skype link ups and young ambassadors share learning and celebration.
At MOSPS we will actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including ‘extremist’ views.