Promoting Fundamental British Values at St Michael’s
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.”
Our School Mission Statement
In the footsteps of Jesus, we strive to achieve excellence in everything we do.
As a Catholic school we pride ourselves in reinforcing British Values with our children, to enable them to grow into good citizens. We aim to nurture our children on their journey through life so they can grow into safe, caring, democratic, responsible and tolerant adults who make a positive difference to British Society and to the world. We encourage all children to be tolerant and respectful to those of different faiths and beliefs. This is done by providing the children with an understanding of the main festivals and key dates of significance to British culture e.g. Remembrance Day, the Queen’s Birthday and major political events such as elections. We celebrate key British events such as the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and did so by having a very ‘Royal tea party.’
At St Michael’s we believe that children have should have a say in their education and we value their contribution and opinions. We encourage them to do this in many different ways. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard and contribute their ideas and opinions through our School Council, our Eco committee and by being a values champion. At St Michael’s we also have House Captains, vice Captains and prefects. The elections of House Captains each year are based solely on pupil votes. Prefects have the opportunity to apply for their position by filling in an application form, detailing how they think they can support the school and what they can offer. This term as we have a general election looming we are taking the opportunity to encourage two of our classes to create their own political party and construct a manifesto as to how they would spend £500 to best improve school life. The children will then vote and elect the class they feel will best look after their interests and improve school life. the children about democracy through debating sessions. There is a debating society which participates in debating competitions and also each class holds their own debating activities. Through debating children have the opportunity to discuss current topics and have a clear discussion and listen and respond to the views of others. Children also visit the Houses of Parliament and get the opportunity to watch debating at university level.
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. Pupils follow a positive behaviour policy and clearly understand the rewards and sanctions that are used. Assemblies and discussions in class focus on recognising right from wrong. Our children are taught about why we have laws and how these laws are enforced. We regularly have visits from the Fire Station and the Police. We have provided the children with safety training from an outside provider called ‘Safe academy’ a session for year 6 delivered by retired policeman on how to keep themselves safe and the consequences of their actions on their school, their family and their wider community. Year 5 also take part in the Junior Citizenship Project which is run by all the emergency services and teaches the children about potential dangers in our society and how they can stay safe.
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 safety, through of provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advise how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons. Whether it be through choice of challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Our school’s ethos and behaviour policy are based on Gospel values, with the important commandment being, ‘Love one another as I have loved you’. Assemblies constantly promote respect for others and the importance of good manners. All pupils are taught the importance of self-respect, honest and open communication with others and fair play. Pupils work collaboratively and value others’ opinions. Displays around the school promote respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our positive behaviour policy. We regularly participate in Sporting events with our neighbouring schools and our gifted and talented children are part of the Brilliant Club project.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
As a Catholic worshipping community, pupils are reminded of their place in a culturally diverse society. This is achieved through our Come and See Religious Education curriculum and the spiritual life of the school. Assemblies and class work promote the diversity of society and the right for each person to be respected and valued equally regardless of ability, gender, faith, heritage or race.