In June 2014, the Prime Minister emphasised the important role that British values can play in education. Although in 2014-15 this was developing in its significance for schools, it was not something new at The Pines School. British values are promoted in much of what we do, during school assemblies, Religious Education, Philosophy and Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) sessions. The values are also integral to our own vision and values.
The British values we espouse are not unique to Britain. We acknowledge that they differ in no way from the wonderful values of the many countries and the cultural backgrounds represented by families at The Pines School.
Read below for details of how we promote British values, or view and download the PDF.
Being part of Britain
We value and celebrate the diverse heritages of everybody at The Pines School. Alongside this, we value and celebrate being part of Britain. This means that we celebrate British traditions and customs in the course of the year; for example, Harvest Festival during the autumn term and trips to the pantomime in at Christmas. We also value and celebrate national events, a recent example being the 100th anniversary of the start of World War One.
Further, children learn about being part of Britain from different perspectives, to understand the physical forming and placement of our country and the impact of significant figures.
•its coasts, rivers and mountains
•where Britain is in relation to the rest of Europe and other countries in the world
Key moments in British history such as ‘London’s Burning’ and significant historical figures who made a difference, positively and negatively on the development of our country.
Children, parents and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard at The Pines School. Democracy is central to how we operate.
The election of the School Council members reflects our British electoral system and demonstrates democracy in action: candidates make speeches, pupils consider characteristics important for an elected representative, pupils vote in secret. Made up of two representatives from each year group, the School Council meets regularly to discuss issues raised by the different classes. The council is able to effect change within the school. The School Council has hosted visits from the Member of Parliament, the Mayor and other honoured guests. Children are asked to respond and reflect on the teaching and learning they receive as well as make suggestions for the School Council to consider. They are also involved in providing crucial feedback during the recruitment process
Pupils are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen carefully and with concern to each other, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinions and voices heard. We encourage pupils to take ownership of not only their school but also of their own learning and progress. This encourages a heightened sense of both personal and social responsibility and is demonstrated on a daily basis by our pupils.
Parents’ opinions are welcomed at The Pines through methods such as questionnaires, surveys at parents evenings, the PTA and the Parent's Forum.
Rules of Law
The importance of rules and laws, whether they be those that govern our school or our country, are referred to and reinforced often, such as in assemblies and when reflecting on behaviour choices. At the start of the school year, each class discusses the school rules and class routines, principles that are clearly understood by all and seen to be necessary to ensure that every class member is able to learn in a safe and ordered environment. Our school highly promotes our 'Pines Code' in everything we do. These five rules were designed, with input from the children, to raise expectations and aspirations for all in our learning community. They are fully embedded across school and strongly guide the behaviours seen here.
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. These values are reinforced in different ways:
•visits from authorities such as the police and fire service
•during Religious Education, when rules for particular faiths are thought about
•during other school subjects, where there is respect and appreciation for different rules
Alongside rules and laws, we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. Through the provision of a safe, supportive environment, we provide boundaries for our pupils to make choices safely; for example:
•choices about what learning challenge or activity
•choices about how they record their learning
•choices around the participation in extra-curricular activities
Our pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are taught how to exercise these safely, such as in our PSHE lessons.
Mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
Whilst predominately White British, The Pines School are proud of the cultural diversity we do have in our community. We are eager to always promote and celebrate our different backgrounds and beliefs. Tolerance, politeness and mutual respect are at the heart of our aims and ethos.
Our pupils know and understand that it is expected that respect is shown to everyone and to everything, whatever differences we may have. Children learn that their behaviour choices have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community are encouraged to treat each other with respect.
Some specific examples of how we at The Pines School enhance pupils’ understanding and respect for different faiths and beliefs:
- Through Religious Education, PSHE and other lesson, we develop awareness and appreciation of other cultures – in English through fiction and in art and music by considering cultures from other parts of the world.
- We aim to celebrate cultural differences through assemblies, our topics, visits to a variety of places of worshp and themed weeks
- One such themed week is our whole school continent study at the start of the academic year. Classes explore a country from a specific continent and teach not only the geographical makeup of this country but explore the beliefs and cultural traditions that make that country so wonderful valued and unique.