Our British Values

British Values at Dunn Street Primary School

At Dunn Street Primary School our school motto is ‘Good Enough is Not Good Enough’ which is taken from the British car manufacturer McLaren.

From Early Years through to Year 6, this shows we have the highest expectations for our staff and pupils.

We uphold the British Values of:

equality

democracy

morality

& tolerance…

…so everyone feels welcomed, included and respected.

We consistently promote a strong sense of regional and national worth through insisting upon basic good manners. We encourage, through the wider school ethos, a sense of participation, fair play and the ability to win and lose with good grace.

In June 2014. David Cameron emphasised the important role that British Values play in education. How well a school promotes such values is an aspect of Ofsted’s inspection process. This however is not an entirely new initiative to DunnStreetPrimary School. Values have been promoted in our school in so much of what is done on a regular basis. ‘British Values’ is a possibly misleading term. Clear values are integral to many countries throughout the world, not differing from the values of most western European, North American or Antipodean countries, for example.

School assemblies, Religious Education, and work in Personal/Health/Social and Cultural sessions provide the opportunities to deliver ‘British Values’ to our children.

The following paragraphs are examples of how we promote British values in our school identified in general ways engrained in the ethos of our school, and in response to expectations set out by ‘Ofsted’.

Being part of Britain

As a school, we value and celebrate the diverse heritages of everyone in our school community. We celebrate being part of Britain engaging in national traditions and customs during the course of the year. Harvest Festival, traditional carol services and pantomimes for example are held during the Autumn Term. In recent years we have celebrated our country’s hosting of Olympic and Commonwealth Games, the Queen’s Jubilee and involved our children in the commemoration of the outbreak of the First World War. We are proud of our nation and being it s citizens. School recognizes that it is a country formed historically and socially by the Christian faith and so focuses on this in Assemblies, promoting Christian values but also recognising the need to draw on the excellent moral teaching of other faiths.

Democracy

Children, parents and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard at our school. Democracy is central to how we operate.

Pupils are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen to each other with care and concern, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinion and voice heard. Children are encouraged to take ownership of their school, and their own learning through their behaviour and conduct. This heightens their personal and social responsibility.

Parents are welcomed into school. We operate an ‘open door’ policy, so that parents can discuss any issues that they wish to raise. Regular parental surveys, Parentview and parents evenings allow for parents and carers to express their opinions to our leadership team and governing body.

Our school’s ‘Family Group’ system allows all children to have a voice in how our school is run, how it can be made better, and how we consolidate on what works well. Monthly meetings allow the children to meet in their “families” to discuss issues raised by children in their classes. The monthly award ensures that the children work collaboratively for their family group.

Rules and Laws

The importance of rules and laws, whether they be those that govern our school or country are referred to, adhered to and reinforced often, such as in assemblies and during reflection upon behaviour choices. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws,  and that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and that consequences occur when laws are broken.

These values are reinforced through:

  • Visits from authorities such the police, fire service, Childline
  • Religious Education lessons highlighting rules for particular faiths.
  • During other school subjects where there is respect and appreciation for rules and fair play, such as in PE/Games lessons or History- that allows for reflection and understanding the implications of contraventions of individual liberties (e.g Henry VIII, World War 2)
  • The school’s ‘Consequences’ behaviour programme promotes positive attitudes to learning in the classroom and appreciating that poor behaviour impacts upon the rest of the class.

Individual Liberty

Alongside rules and laws we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. The provision of a safe, supportive environment provides boundaries for our children to make choices safely. A zero tolerance towards bullying and racism or other prejudices also respects the right of the individual in our school. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their personal freedom and taught to exercise these safely through our E- safety, and PHSE programmes. Our annual support of the British Legion Poppy Appeal and this year’s ‘Lest We Forget’ campaign, teach the children that sacrifices have been made in the past for our liberty as a nation.

Children are encouraged to attend extra- curricular activities but are aware that they have a choice in doing so.

Mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs

Our pupils know and understand that it is expected that respect is shown to everyone irrespective of whatever differences individuals may have. Our school prayer identifies that everyone has a contribution to make to the success of our school. We also recognize that alternative cultures and religious faiths of some of our children add to the experiences of all. They are embraced and it is recognised that modern Britain benefits from a mix of races and creeds and it is the same for our school. It is important to respect all faiths and ensure that no one is marginalised or falls prey to any form of prejudice. This is done in a variety of ways:

  • Religious Education lessons develop an understanding and awareness of other cultures and the significance of customs and practices.
  • English, Geography and Art lessons help to share stories and viewpoints from other parts of the world.
  • Themed weeks allow school to celebrate and enjoy learning about other cultures that make up modern Britain.
  • Assemblies, that feature both fiction and non-fiction stories from other beliefs and the chance to listen to music from other parts of the world.
  • Music lessons that encourage the children to play music in different styles.

Generosity of Spirit and Fair Play

A key feature of Modern Britain is the attitudes towards fair play and the sense of assisting those in need. Our school has always been involved in helping others, particularly at times of crisis. (Haiti/Tsunamis in Philippines/Japan/Queensland Floods). This continues to be the case regularly raising funds for specific appeals both nationally and internationally.

The Spirit of Fair Play is embodied in all areas of the school’s approach to PE – Global Sport/Aussie Rules Football/Gaelic Football – extra-curricular activities where these are key features.

These include:

  • Annual charity fund raising (Children in Need/Sport/Comic Relief/Poppy Appeal)
  • International Charity work (Sport/Comic Relief/ Operation Christmas Child- Shoeboxes)
  • Year 6 Leavers’ Assembly chosen charity – Help for Heroes (2013) and The Children’s Foundation (2014)
  • Reacting to specific  world crises – (Japan Tsunami- Fundraising concert)
  • Charity fundraising – (Barnardo’s/Jeans for Genes Day/ Local Hospices)
  • Choir attending fund raising events for Save The Children & Help the Aged through links at QueenElizabethCollege, Darlington
  • Choir attending Citizenship Ceremonies at South ShieldsTown Hall.
  • Harvest giving focussing on international aid (Water Aid/Farm Africa/)
  • Curriculum projects – British Legion/ Traidcraft/ Send My Friend to School/Unicef/GlobalSport.

Added to website –December 2014

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