How St Michael’s actively promotes British values.
As a school, we value and celebrate the diverse heritages of everybody at St Michael’s. Alongside this, we value and celebrate being part of Britain. In general terms, this means that we celebrate traditions throughout the year; for example, Harvest festival during the autumn term, Easter services and the British tradition of a pantomime around Christmas.
We also understand the importance of British values: democracy, rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs. Some of the ways in which we do this are shown below.
Student, parent and staff voice (Democracy)
Students, parents and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard at St Michael’s through parent, staff and student questionnaires based on the school ethos and the distinctive Christian Ethos.
The school council allows students to voice their opinions, the council has had the opportunity to make a positive impact on the school environment, this includes taking part in planning for the new toilet blocks, canteen menus etc. They also take an active role in the recruitment of new staff across the school.
Rules and laws (Rule of law)
Pupils are encouraged to take ownership of not only their school but also of their own learning and progress. This encourages both personal and social responsibility and is demonstrated on a daily basis.
The rewards and sanctions system in school allows students to understand the importance of rules and can assist students in making informed decisions.
The behavior for learning principles put in place by the school are clearly understood by all and seen to ensure that every class member is able to learn in the best possible environment.
School values (Mutual respect)
The school holds 5 core values at the heart of its mission: Love, forgiveness, courage, peace and equality. These values are used in the daily life of the school and students are reminded about them regularly during assemblies and collective worship.
Students have the opportunity to be awarded when they live out the values in their lives, this give students the opportunity to understand and put into practice the values so that they have an impact on their actions and choices.
Ways in which values affect the running of St Michael’s:
- Teachers explain the meaning of the values to our students
- Pupils have time to reflect on the values and their actions
- Staff model the values to our students during and outside of lessons
- The whole school community including parents and governors are involved in the Values system and all can continue to contribute through nomination for awards.
Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, during discussions in R.S and PSHE students are allowed to explore their own personal beliefs before looking at the beliefs of others in the local community and around the world. Topics studies in PSHE that allow this personal expression and discussion include: How do we deal with conflict, social and emotional aspects of learning, bullying and individuality, Britain as a diverse society, government, voting and elections, crime and the law, sex and relationships.
Understanding and respect for other religions and cultures.
Through Religious Education, PSHE and other lessons we develop awareness and appreciation of other cultures – in R.S one example would be the topic how Islam is portrayed in the media, in English through fiction and stories from other cultures and in Art by considering culture and art from other parts of the world.
During collective worship students are introduced to symbols, stories, traditions and celebrations used in other faiths and religions, this allows students to gain a fair wider view of the world around them.
Other key topics covered in RS include:
- What beliefs do Christian denominations share and what beliefs separate them?
- How do contemporary images reflect the beliefs, practices and values of faith communities?
- What does it mean to be a good steward in the 21st Century?
- Do words matter? - What do you believe in and why? - How do you express your core beliefs? - Are beliefs shared?
- What is the impact of difference and diversity on faith communities?