Our Promotion of British Values in the Academy
The Government set out their definition of British Values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy. These were reinforced in September 2014, due to recent events. These new regulations will sit alongside the requirements of the Equalities Act, which also applies to all types of school and Academies.
Schools & Academies will be expected to focus on, and be able to show, how our work with pupils is effective in embedding fundamental British Values.
Promoting British Values at Winifred Holtby Academy
We agree with the Department for Education’s five-part definition of British values:
- Mutual Respect
- Individual Liberty
- The Rule of Law
- Tolerance of those of different faiths or beliefs
At the Academy, pupils will encounter these principles throughout everyday Academy life. Listed below are some examples of how we promote these values in our Academy community.
Pupil voice is significant in regards to life at the Academy. Our pupil elected Academy Council plays a strong role in our Academy. They are elected by their class peers and are involved in making the Academy a better place to learn. Pupil voice is also promoted through participation in Youth Parliament issues, for example, the Vote@16 campaign. The principles of democracy are also explored within the Social Science and Humanities curriculum.
Pupil questionnaires and interviews are also conducted throughout the year. We know that the formation of the Academy Council and the active participation of our pupils will sow the seeds for a more sophisticated understanding of democracy in the future.
The Rule of Law
Our pupils will encounter rules and laws throughout their entire lives. We want our pupils to understand that whether these laws govern the class, the Academy, the neighbourhood or the country, they are set for good reasons and must be adhered to. This understanding of the importance of rules will be consistently reinforced through assemblies and our curriculum. The involvement of our pupils in the creation of the Academy rules helps them to understand the reasons behind the rules and the consequences if they are broken. Through philosophical enquiry in our PSHCE, we allow opportunity to debate and discuss the reasons for laws, so that pupils can recognise the importance of these for their own protection. Throughout the year we welcome visits from members of the wider community, including the police. We believe that clear explanations and real life stories emphasise the importance of the rule of law for our pupils.
Also the promotion of the concept of “fair play”, following and developing rules, celebrating and rewarding success, accepting defeat and participating in activities that promote cooperation with others and inclusion for all form an integral part of the PE curriculum.
We invest a great deal of time in creating a positive culture in our Academy, so that children are in a safe environment, where choices and freedoms are encouraged. In lessons, we encourage pupils to take responsibility for their own learning. We offer a range of clubs which pupils have the freedom to choose from, based on their interests. We educate children on their rights and personal freedoms, as well as supporting them in recognising how to exercise these freedoms safely, for example, Online Safety. At the Academy we believe that valuing choice and freedom in daily Academy life will foster a value for individual liberty, as the pupils embark upon their adult lives.
Mutual respect is at the core of our Academy life. Pupils learn to treat each other and staff with great respect. Part of our Academy ethos and behaviour policy has revolved around Core Values: Aspiration, Achievement and Respect. Pupils have been part of discussions and assemblies related to what this means and how it is shown. Our ethos promotes respect for others and this is reiterated through our individual classroom rules, as well as our behaviour and learning policy. Alongside this, pupils and staff are encouraged to engage in restorative practice to help engender positive relationships.
Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
At the Academy we offer a culturally rich and diverse curriculum, in which all major religions, and non-religious beliefs such as Humanism, are studied and respected. At the Academy we strongly believe that tolerance is gained through knowledge and understanding. Through our curriculum and the routines of our daily school life, we strive to demonstrate tolerance and help pupils to become knowledgeable and understanding citizens who can build a better Britain for the future. 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 are supported by learning in subjects across the curriculum.