Promoting British Values
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.”
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy and these values were reiterated in 2014.
At Buckingham, these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
We have a School Council, with membership from Year Two to Year Six which meets regularly to discuss and to plan projects that will improve the school and be of benefit to its pupils.
Prospective School Council members in the Junior Department must ‘pitch’ to their class as they are democratically elected into office by their peers.
Our School Council has recently raised £200.00 for Sport Relief 2018 through the selling of wristbands. They supported this work by presenting a series of age-appropriate assemblies designed to raise pupils’ awareness of the importance of their donations towards the care and support of children all over the world.
Earlier this year in February our school councillors were also involved in the organisation of Safer Internet Day. They prepared and delivered three different age-appropriate assemblies to pupils throughout the school so that every child received advice about how to use the internet safely.
The School Council are currently planning a project to promote safer and more thoughtful car parking outside our school including the switching-off of car engines as harmful fumes can aggravate asthma and other breathing-related conditions. They also pollute our environment.
Annually our School Council continue to represent the school at key external local events, for example the Remembrance Day Ceremony at nearby Hanworth War Memorial.
The school participates fully in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames Pupil Parliament initiative whereby Year 6 pupils ‘pitch’ for election by their year group as Pupil Parliament representatives. Each year the newly-elected girl and boy spend a day at York House in Twickenham competing against the other Richmond schools in an attempt to become the Pupil Mayor and Pupil Deputy of Richmond-upon-Thames.
Again, in conjunction with the London Borough of Richmond-upon-Thames, the school participates very fully in the programme of events designed to be carried out by Junior Safety Officers. These are pupils in Year 5 who have successfully ‘pitched’ and been voted into office by their year group.
The JSOs attend an initiation event in Twickenham and are tasked with a series of responsibilities, including the provision of school assemblies with a safety theme. This year’s representatives have already worked with our youngest pupils in the Early Years department on the theme of Road Safety.
Additionally, the JSOs are invited to join the regular half-termly Health and Safety tours that take place so that any risks or dangers within the school workplace are identified and countered in good time.
These tours are managed by the Safeguarding Lead together with the School Governor responsible for Health and Safety. During their year of duty the JSOs are usually invited to feedback directly at a Governors’ meeting so that their pupil voice is effectively heard and acted upon.
Our Year 6 pupils participate in the annual Richmond and Kingston Youth Elections. Preparation for this event provides valuable knowledge about the electoral process. It also highlights the role of a democratic voting system in ensuring that the views of the people are taken into account when policy decisions are made. Responsible citizenship is promoted through the interest and involvement shown by our pupils in selecting their chosen candidates and also through the view expressed by some that they would like to stand as future councillors themselves.
Through our curriculum children are taught about, and are encouraged to respect, public institutions and services.
Pupils are asked to complete a questionnaire towards the end of each academic year so that their views and perceptions about various aspects of school can be recorded and analysed and where appropriate, acted upon.
Pupils are selected at random for pupil conferencing meetings with members of the senior leadership team as well as subject leaders. Their views are sought on specific issues generally connected with teaching and learning. For example, most recently, representatives from all year groups from Year One to Year Six were asked about their perception of their learning in both English and Maths.
The school is very proud that some of its pupils choose to attend a variety of uniformed organisations in the local area such as Beavers, Cubs and Scouts, Rainbow Brownies, Brownies, Girl Guides and the Sea Scouts. Pupils are invited to wear their uniforms to school with pride on the annual Thinking Day and also on Remembrance Day.
THE RULE OF LAW
The importance of laws, whether they are those that govern the class, the school, or the country, is consistently reinforced at Buckingham Primary School.
Pupils are taught from an early age about the expectations of the school. This is usually accomplished through the creation of age-appropriate Class Rules that are displayed within each classroom.
Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind rules and 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 Community Police and local Fire Officer help to reinforce these important messages.
At Buckingham, we provide an empowering education within a safe and supportive environment. We educate and we also provide boundaries for our pupils. As a result they are in a position to make informed choices.
Pupils are encouraged to know, to understand and to exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our focused work on E Safety and within the PSHE curriculum.
Buckingham has a robust anti-bullying policy in place and this is displayed within each classroom. It is agreed to by all class members at the beginning of each new academic year.
A clear behaviour policy is also in place together with guidelines detailing the strategies and the hierarchy of response should a misdemeanor occur.
The school has a full range of safety and equality-related policies that run effectively within the Safeguarding Standard that the school successfully achieved.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values. From the earliest age, our pupils learn that their behaviour can have an effect on their own rights and well-being and those of others. All members of the school community, whether they are an adult or a child, are expected to treat each other with respect.
TOLERANCE OF THOSE OF DIFFERENT FAITHS AND BELIEFS
Buckingham provides a variety of opportunities for pupils to visit places of worship as well as those of cultural interest. We also actively encourage visitors from a range of communities, cultures and organisations into our school.
Diwali and Chinese New Year are highlighted in our school calendar and both of these occasions attract many families into the school to share the traditions and customs associated with these important festivals. Other significant events such as Eid are celebrated at linked assemblies when pupils are invited to wear their celebratory traditional costume.
The high percentage of ‘English as a Second Language’ pupils within the school and the richness and diversity that this provides is regularly and overtly celebrated. Parents and Carers are warmly welcomed into school to demonstrate skills and languages from a great variety of countries from around the world.
The school supports local charities such as Shooting Star Chase, a nearby children’s hospice as well as our local church, All Saints, Hampton as well as national charities, for example Children in Need. Our annual Staff Charity fund-raising days donate proceeds to Breast Cancer charities and also to Shelter.