The DfE have recently 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 Castle View Acaemy these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is rife within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our House and School Councils and Pupil Surveys. The important positions of Student Leaders, House Captains and Prefects are based partly on pupil votes. Our school rewards scheme involves rewards which the pupils vote on.
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 through our Behaviour Policy and through House and Year assemblies. 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 organisations such as Solomon Theatre and our PSHE programme help to 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 safely, through our 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 E-Safety and Personal Development lessons. Whether it be through choice of challenge or participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Part of our school ethos and Behaviour Policy has revolved around Core Values such as 'the best in everyone', and pupils have been part of discussions and assemblies related to what this means and how it is shown. Posters around the school promote respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our Behaviour Policy.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
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 Personal Development lessons and supported by our PSHE programme. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school.
Castle View Academy strives endlessly to ensure that its students leave with the strongest foundation of values upon which to build a successful life and a successful contribution to our society.