Helping children to understand and appreciate the British Cultural Heritage they live within, alongside developing and celebrating their own identity, place and contribution within this society.
Pentland Infant and Nursery School is a Rights Respecting School. We aim for our children to become valuable and fully rounded members of society, who treat all others with respect and tolerance. We value the community that we are part of and celebrate the diversity of the country and world we live in. We actively promote the basic British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of all regardless of their faith and beliefs.
Our school reflects these British values in all that we do. We aim to nurture our children and help them grow into safe, caring, democratic, responsible and tolerant adults who make a positive difference to British society and to the wider world. We believe that it is our responsibility to help children to be creative, open-minded and independent individuals who can contribute successfully to the society in which they live.
At Pentland, our assemblies, PSHE and RE lessons in particular provide excellent opportunities to deepen and develop children’s understanding of these values. However, all curriculum areas provide a vehicle for furthering children’s knowledge of the concepts and providing them with the skills to be able to put them into practice in everyday life.
Below are just some examples of how these values are taught and interwoven into the ethos, work and life of our school:
We value the voice of the child and promote democratic processes. A good example of this is our thriving School Council. Each year each class, from Reception to Year 2, has two councillors voted for and elected by the children in their class. This process helps the children to learn about how adults elect councils and members of parliament in order to represent their interests and give them a voice.
The School Council are given responsibility for gathering children’s views in order to inform and help to shape the work and focus of the school. In the last year our School Council have:
School Council gives children the opportunity to debate issues, put forward different ideas and viewpoints and arrive at an agreed consensus.
Throughout the day, in different lessons and at times such as playtimes, children are encouraged to share ideas, offer their opinions and listen to those of others. There are many opportunities for children to be helped to understand that sometimes an agreement must be reached, that takes in the opinions of the majority and that this then shapes the activity of the class or school.
The children’s opinions are vital and we seek to gather their views on an on-going basis. This is done in many informal ways, as well as formally through our pupil survey, which we undertake once a year. The feedback from this and school council play an important part in school improvement planning.
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.
The school has a very clear Positive Behaviour Policy, which clearly sets out our expectations in terms of positive and acceptable behaviour. Our ‘Top Ten Behaviour Tips’ help children to understand exactly what actions they need to take to demonstrate good behaviour and to act in such a way as to maintain a happy and safe learning environment for all within school.
The policy has a very clear and structured approach to both rewards and sanctions. These are reviewed with children on a regular basis.
The school is actively working towards the Unicef Rights Respecting School Award and as such has placed the rights of the child at the centre of all we do. Children are taught about their own and other’s rights and their responsibility to both respect the rights of others and what they should personally do in order to help uphold these.
Regular assemblies link our expectations for behaviour to laws which apply to both adults and children. We welcome visitors from authorities within the community, such as the Police and Fire Service, who help to reinforce these messages.
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, effective teaching and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to do this safely, for example through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons.
Throughout the day, children are given opportunities in lessons and at break times to make choices; this could be a choice of learning or games activity, a method of recording their work or a choice from the menu on offer at lunchtime. Whether it be big or small, children are given the opportunity to exercise their right to the freedom of choice.
Our school is built on the strong belief that everyone has the right to be their own person; our policies uphold every child’s right to equal opportunities, regardless of gender, sexuality, ethnicity, faith, political or financial status. Through all our work in school, we help children to understand that no one should be subject to intimidation and that they should have strength in their own choices and beliefs and not be unduly influenced by the thoughts and actions of others, who may seek to guide their choices inappropriately.
Respect is one of the core values of Pentland School. Children learn to develop respect for themselves and for others. Everyone is invested with the responsibility for promoting and demonstrating respect for each other. The adults in school are role models to the children and our School Councillors understand that they are the key representatives for their peers.
The principle of respect is the foundation of our Behaviour policy, class rules and charters. Our Top Ten Behaviour Tips clearly explain to the children what respectful behaviour looks like on an everyday level. These messages are reinforced in day to day teaching and assemblies.
Children are also encouraged to respect and celebrate their own and other’s achievements and we celebrate these weekly in a special Celebration Assembly.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Pentland is situated in an area which is not particularly culturally diverse, therefore we place a great emphasis on promoting diversity with the children.
The school makes considerable efforts to ensure children have exposure to opportunities beyond their local community and introduces them to concepts and ideas beyond their everyday experiences, thus helping them to develop tolerance, appreciation and respect for all people within the multicultural society in which we live.
We place a high value on sporting and the arts activities, as well as ensuring every child has the opportunity to experience an educational trip at some point during the year. These experiences are used as platforms for linking with people beyond their own community and embracing the idea of diversity being a positive concept.
Our RE and PSHE teaching teaches tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs and promotes a greater understanding of religious diversity and practices for those religions represented in the UK. Planning for RE is directed by the Kirklees Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education.
Assemblies are regularly planned to address this issue through the inclusion of moral stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. We use national and international events, such as Comic Relief, to help children respect and appreciate people in Britain and internationally. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school.
Just a few examples of learning about and celebrating British Values at Pentland: