Alston Lane Catholic Primary School & Nursery
At Alston Lane, we develop and promote British Values throughout our school life and within our curriculum. We fully embrace the DfE’s guidance and aim to create and enforce a clear and rigorous approach 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. As a Catholic school, the Gospel values and fundamental British values are bound together through a variety of initiatives, curricular lessons and assemblies so that our children become well-rounded members of society who treat others with respect and leave school fully prepared for life in modern Britain. We use Picture News and Ten:Ten resources for our assemblies and collective worships which help us to teach the fundamental British Values at an age-appropriate level.
The following provides examples of our commitment to developing the fundamental British values across school:
Democracy is an important value at our school. Each year the children decide their class charter and the rights associated with these. All children contribute to the drawing up of the charter. Our children have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We have an elected school council consisting of two council members per year group who are democratically voted in by their class. The school council discuss ways of improving the school and make practical suggestions of how to do so. 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. Children also have the opportunity to express their views about their personal experiences in our school through an annual pupil questionnaire.
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 regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through our whole school assemblies. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws and learn that they govern and protect us. We aim to ensure that all pupils understand the responsibilities they have as citizens to adhere to laws and they are taught the consequences if laws are broken.
Our behaviour system is centred around reconciliation and we nurture our children to develop the skills to resolve conflicts through effective communication, ensuring that every child has the opportunity to have their voice heard. At the start of each year, the children take part in a discussion where they generate their class charter and rules as we believe each child has the right to learn in a safe environment where expectations are clear and consistent. Throughout the year, the children have the opportunity to take part in age-appropriate workshops with different organisations such as the Fire Services, Police and Road Safety Groups to help them understand that living under the rule of law protects individuals and the consequences if laws are broken.
Within our school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. Developing their self-esteem and self-confidence is very important so they can become active citizens in their communities. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are taught how to exercise these rights to the best effect. Our HRSE/PHSE curriculum provides a safe environment for children to learn about their individual rights and discuss scenarios where they may need to make informed choices in their lives.
Our school ethos and behaviour policy are based on the Gospel values with Jesus’ new commandment ‘Love one another as I have loved you’ at the centre of everything we do. The message that every child is ‘created in the image of God’ permeates through daily life at Alston Lane. We encourage our children to work collaboratively throughout the school day and value others’ opinions. Through our HRSE, PHSE and Geography curriculum we actively promote respect for our environment so that our children can make a personal and positive impact in their local community and globally.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
This is achieved through the enhancement of children’s understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Collective worships and assemblies involve discussions which address prejudices and prejudice-based bullying and these issues are discussed in more depth during our HRSE/PHSE lessons. Our history curriculum includes three Black History units which seek to address the lack of balance and diversity that can occur when we ‘whitewash’ history and neglect to tell the stories of people from different cultures and backgrounds. Our RE curriculum provides pupils with a deep understanding of their own faith as well as an awareness of the faith and traditions of other religious communities as a basis for understanding and respecting them. To enhance the children’s understanding of other faiths, we invite visitors into school to share their own experiences and the children have the opportunity to visit a local Synagogue and Mosque.