Promoting British Values at Gomer Junior School
In-line with DfE regulations, at Gomer Junior School we have embraced the opportunity to ‘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’ to help prepare children for life in modern Britain.
British Values links well to our Learning Powers and Foundations for Learning. Additionally, our Personal Social Health Education (PSHE) helps to give children the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to develop as confident, healthy and independent individuals. Our learning PSHE supports emotional health and well being, financial awareness, sex and relationship education, drug, tobacco and alcohol education, bullying and citizenship, at a level appropriate to children’s age. Opportunities to further children’s development in PSHE are embedded throughout our curriculum including PE, Science and P4C.
A wealth of enrichment activities further support and complement our PSHE curriculum. These include residential trips, school visits, community events, sports, arts and music clubs and events. Targeted pastoral and emotional learning groups support individuals and small groups who need additional support. Our four Learning Mentors, making our LAPS Team, support this part of our school superbly.
Personal and Social skills are at the heart of our school values and are the focus of school assemblies, class behaviour reward systems and our weekly Golden Child Award. Children are actively involved in making decisions and discussing issues surrounding their health, friendships and wellbeing through the School Council and other pupil voice activities. We have a Head Boy, Head Girl and Gomer Reps. PSHE is one of the many ways in which we support the Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural development of our children.
We use the Agreed Syllabus ‘Living Difference’ to teach Religious Education (RE) and recognise the valuable role RE has in the Spiritual, Social, Moral and Cultural development of our children. By teaching a variety of concepts, in relation to Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and Judaism our children are better able to understand and relate to our pluralist society – something we embrace at Gomer Junior School.
Gomer Junior has a clear understanding of the Prevent Strategy and has adopted it to ensure the safety of our children. Our school ethos is based on clear aims. Supported with our PSHE and RE learning our children understand how to operate in our community and how to stay safe.
More about British Values
The Government set outs its definition of British values in 2011 Prevent Strategy, and these values were reiterated in 2014. At Gomer Junior School these values have always been important and are reinforced within our curriculum in the following ways:
Each year the children choose a class representative for the School Council. Children are given the opportunity to show-case why they should be chosen. Their classmates then choose accordingly. In addition to this, children from across the school can apply to be librarians.
To further develop a sense of responsibility, within a democratic setting, all Y5 pupils are given the opportunity to apply for a variety of positions to help with the running of the school. These include: Head Boy and Head Girl, Gomer Reps, Office Support, Site Support and Sports Representatives.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced at Gomer Junior School.Everyone in our community is aware of their responsibility to behaving in a particular way. Our ‘responsibilities’ boards are present around the school and successful underpin outstanding behaviour at Gomer Junior School. The shared ‘responsibilities’ were decided upon by the whole school so are clearly understood and adhered. They provide a powerful reference point. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind rules and laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as our local PCSOs and other emergency services help reinforce this message.
At Gomer Junior, 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 informed choices, through a safe environment and an 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 Collective Worship, eSafety and PSHE lessons.We are aware that on occasions our pupils may make the wrong choices. Our learners are developing in a community which encourages clear reflection in an attempt to ensure better choices are made ‘next time’.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect. The first of our ‘responsibilities reads: I will be respectful and polite.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Gomer Junior is an inclusive school and the vast majority of our community is white. We actively promote diversity through our celebrations of different faiths and cultures. We have themed menus to support such occasions. Religious Education lessons and PSHE lessons reinforce messages of tolerance and respect for others. Members of different faiths and religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. The children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths. Staff are Prevent trained and understand how to best protect and support our children.