Promoting British Values
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.”
The government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy, and these values have been reiterated by the Prime Minister. At our school these values are reinforced regularly.
These values are taught explicitly through Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHEE), Religious Education (RE) and Islamic Studies. We also teach British Values through planning and delivering a broad and balanced curriculum.
Our school takes various opportunities to actively promote British Values through collective worship and whole school systems and structures such as electing and running our School Council. We also actively promote British values through ensuring that our curriculum planning and delivery includes real opportunities for exploring these values.
At our school these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is an important value at our school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council. The elections of members of the Council, prefects and house captains are based on pupil votes.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of laws and rules, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days. Our system for behaviour is aligned to an agreed set of codes and if pupils are sanctioned this is always set against the agreed school behaviour code.
Pupils are asked to identify which aspect of the code they have broken to ensure that this connection is made and understood. Pupils 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, fire service etc. are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message.
To encourage and promote good behaviour, attitude and work, we have devised a reward system which is consistently followed throughout the school.
We are committed to praising pupils’ efforts. We endeavour to praise the pupils informally, individually, during group work, in front of the whole class and the whole school. Pupils are rewarded not only for achievement in curriculum areas, but for good behaviour and demonstration of Aqlaaq.
Rewards are given in the form of stickers, merits, house points and certificates. Pupils’ achievements are also recognised during assemblies and at our formal annual awards evening.
Individual Liberty :
Pupils are actively encouraged to make choices at our school, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we provide boundaries for our pupils to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and planned curriculum. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our e-safety teaching. Pupils are given the freedom to make choices, e.g. signing up for extra-curricular clubs.
Our school ethos and behaviour policy are based around Islamic values such as ‘respect’ and ‘responsibility.’
The Prophet of Allah was sent not just to eradicate transgression and to uphold Islam, but he was also sent to bring mankind to higher levels of good character.
The Prophet of Allah has said:
“Indeed, I Rasul Allah have been sent to perfect good character.”
The Prophet of Allah (SAW) himself displayed exceptional character, and was himself a manifestation of excellent character to the extent that he was praised by Almighty Allah:
“And you, surely, possess sublime moral excellences.”
Surah Al-Qalam : 4 Good manners and good character are very much demanded in Islam.
“There is none heavier in the scales of the Hereafter than good character” al-Tirmizi and Abu Daud
Our aim as a school is to build character of our pupils and instil in them a love for din.
Tolerance of Those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
The Quran instructs us to be acquainted with other nations and have good relations with them.
“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that who has At-Taqwa. Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.”
According to this verse it is imperative to know other cultures and communicate with them.
This verse establish an important concept: that it is Allah Himself who “made us into nations and tribes,” and so it is the will of Allah to have human diversity. We, as humans, have to look at this diversity as we look to flowers of different colours. Each one adds more beauty and complements the others.
At our school, this is achieved through enhancing pupils’ understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity in our local community. Collective worship and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in RE, Citizenship and PSHEE.
We have Interfaith Week where we study other world faiths and learn about their customs, practices and celebrations. We invite guest speakers and run workshops to give the pupils a real experience of a different belief system.