Preparing Children for Life in Modern Britain
At Kings Avenue Primary School, we take very seriously our responsibility to prepare children fully for life in modern Britain. We ensure that the fundamental British Values are introduced, discussed and lived out every day through the ethos and work of the school. These values have been defined recently by the DfE as:
- Rule of Law
- Individual Liberty
- Mutual Respect
- Tolerance of different faiths and beliefs
All of the curriculum areas, in particular Humanities, RE and PSHCE, provide a vehicle for furthering and deepening the children’s understanding of these concepts. Daily activities, such as assemblies and extra-curricular clubs, are also used to raise the profile of these values and help the children to understand their significance. Our children embrace these concepts with enthusiasm and demonstrate a strong understanding of their application to their own lives.
Each of the core British values is promoted at Kings Avenue in the following ways:
Democracy is an important value at our school, as we give our children every opportunity to have a say in the development and future of the school. We ensure that Pupil Voice is heard strongly and provide different platforms for the children to express their ideas and opinions.
Our School Council has members who were elected by their peers in their classes, modelling the democratic process. The School Council meets regularly with the Head of School; they are responsible for collecting suggestions from their classes and disseminating feedback after the meetings.
We also have appointed Prefects from our Year 6 cohort, who were selected through both nominations from staff and children throughout Key Stage 2. They carry out a range of duties, from supporting younger children in the playground to delivering booster lessons in their lunch times. We have plans in the near future to create a Junior Leadership Team from our Prefects. They will be required to create a campaign for election, and will be chosen through votes from other children in Key Stage 2. This process will be staged to coincide with the upcoming General Election in the Summer term.
Around the school, we have Suggestion Boxes set up for the children to use at any time to pass on their ideas to the Senior Leadership Team. Our Monitoring Schedule also builds in regular opportunities for children to meet with the Leadership Team to discuss their learning and preferences. Through all of these forums, we seek to ensure that the children feel that they have a say in the direction of the school, and understand the importance of expressing their views.
Rule of Law
The importance of rules, the rewards for adhering to them and the consequences of breaking them is reinforced at Kings Avenue constantly. All around the school, our Golden Rules are always on display; these are the core values that we expect all of our children to demonstrate. The significance of these is reinforced regularly during assemblies.
Our Behaviour Policy, which has been shared with and explained to all of our children, focuses on children making positive choices about their own behaviour. Our children are taught that the rules within this are there to ensure that everyone learns to the best of their ability and reaches their full potential. When children have not made good choices about their own behaviour, they are supported to think about which of the rules they did not follow, and the effect that this had on others. Alongside this, we operate a consistent school-wide reward system for positive behaviour. Children making consistently good choices are rewarded termly with Gold awards for Outstanding Behaviour and Silver awards for Most Improved Behaviour. They are also recognised in our weekly ‘Star of the Week’ assemblies. Through these systems, the children develop a strong understanding of the need for laws and the rewards in life for adhering to them.
Alongside the school Golden Rules, each class has also drawn up a Class Charter of laws to be followed in the classroom; the children were the driving force in deciding what these rules should be in their classes. We are working presently to involve the children in the process of deciding on sanctions to be given when the Class Charter has been broken.
Through our Curriculum, we also build in other opportunities for the children to deepen their understanding of the importance of laws in society. For example, in our Thematic Curriculum, the children learn about different types of governance in the past, e.g. in Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire, and compare these models to our society today. Our Curriculum is also enriched through visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service, who talk to the children about the importance of their work and issues which relate to their lives.
We aim for each of our children to maximise their individual talents to become the best people they can be, whilst developing their self-esteem and confidence. As part of this, we actively encourage them to use their individual creativity and exercise their freedom of choice. Our Curriculum is designed to give children freedom over how they record their learning and the direction they take it in. The philosophy of our teaching and learning places emphasis on the right to have our own thoughts and evidence-based views. Through collecting Pupil Voice information, we are constantly adapting the Curriculum to give our children the best possible opportunities we can.
Our Behaviour Policy is designed to create a safe and secure environment in the school, where all of the children feel able to make good choices and take risks. Each class has a weekly PSHCE class assembly, where one of the key focus is on the importance of individual rights and the responsibilities these bring. Increasingly, the children are taking the lead over the issues to be discussed in these assemblies. Furthermore, we have broadened our range of extra-curricular activities and clubs; the children are able to choose the clubs they will join to suit their own personal interests and ambitions.
We recognise that in the modern world, the children need to be fully equipped to make good choices about the way they use technology, and in particular the internet. The teaching of e-safety is fully integrated into our Computing curriculum, but is also a focus of assemblies and whole-school events. Through this, we aim for our children to enjoy using technology safely in all aspects of their every day lives.
Respect and Tolerance of Different Faiths and Beliefs
We are lucky to have a very diverse cohort; our children come from a wide range of cultural and religious backgrounds, and this is celebrated at every opportunity through the work of the school. A lot of importance is placed on our children learning about, and being inquisitive about and respectful of, the cultures and beliefs of others.
Through our RE and PSCHE curriculum, our children learn about the traditions and beliefs of a wide range of faiths; during these lessons they are encouraged to share their own experiences and reflect on those of others. Further to this, each class presents an assembly through the year to mark a particular religious festival, which parents/carers are also encouraged to get involved with. The RE curriculum is enriched with visits to places of worship and talks in school from faith leaders. Diversity is also explored as part of our Thematic Curriculum; as the children learn about different civilisations and places around the world, they explore the beliefs and traditions prevalent in those times or places, bringing their own experiences to this learning wherever possible.
We are committed to drawing on our wider school community to promote diversity and tolerance too. Our ‘Parents and Friends of Kings Avenue’ group has organised events this year including a celebration for Eid and an International Evening, where adults and children from a range of cultural backgrounds have come together to share their traditions and beliefs. These events were a great success, and they are presently working to organise other opportunities.
Respect, tolerance and understanding are fundamental values to all that we do as a school. We are committed to challenging anyone who expresses views contrary to these principles, to ensure that our school remains a community free of prejudice where everyone feels valued.