The DfE have 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.”
At Banks Road Infant and Nursery School we have shared and reflected upon what British values mean to us. Tolerance and respect are embedded in our school values which are reinforced regularly and in age appropriate ways. We want our school community to be proud of their nation and understand how they can contribute as effective citizens. We understand that this important process begins at a very early age and we seek to nurture this at Banks Road Infant and Nursery School.
Children have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We understand the need for their opinions and views to be at the centre of our decision making. Through our work on Philosophy for Children, children are given the possibility of seeing that their ideas have value, and that others have different ideas that have value too. They realise that they don’t always have to be right. They have the confidence to ask questions and learn through discussion.
Staff model the democratic process on a daily basis by inviting questions and sharing views through discussion. Our children are taught explicitly to verbalise their thinking, to consider the greater good and be aware of the needs of others.
Through school council, children are able to put forward their views about the school. During Child Initiated learning all children are developing their decision making skills and learning to make informed choices and take responsibility for them.
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 our daily practice, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through whole school issues. Children are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as the Police, help reinforce this message.
Within school, children 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 children to make choices safely, through provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Children are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our Rights Respecting School work, E-Safety and PSHE lessons. Whether it be through choice of learning challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, children are given the freedom to make choices. Lunchtime is a good example of this, every child works collaboratively, sharing equipment and engaging in good manners. As a school we do not shy away from routines that may be challenging instead we enable and train our children to make informed personal choices.
Respect is one of our school values and one of our Banks Road BRILLIANT expectations . Children learn that their behaviour has an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect. We also share the consequences of what happens when respect and tolerance are not employed as strategies. We regularly discuss current affairs with the children enabling them to make sense of the world they are in.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Banks Road Infant and Nursery School is an area which does not have a great deal of cultural diversity, therefore we place a great emphasis on promoting diversity with the children. Assemblies are regularly planned to address this issue either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. Our RE, PSHE and flexible curriculum teaching reinforce this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. We understand that it is important to understand the different faiths of the world.
What do we do at Banks Road Infant and Nursery School to celebrate being British?
- study key historical figures and events in British history (e.g Remembrance Day) learn the key geographical facts and regions of Britain learn about the national Saints and legends
- actively participate in community celebration of St George’s Day with dance and listen to music from around the different regions of Britain, learn traditional British songs, study local birds and wildlife; especially those unique to Toton and Nottinghamshire
- off-site visits to local historical places support national events such as the Olympics, World Cup etc.