At Adcote we are committed to actively promoting British values and this forms part of our wider work in school with pupils in relation to their Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural education (SMSC). At the heart of these values, lie good relationships in which teachers and pupils work together towards common goals. The DfE have reinforced the requirement “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.
At Adcote, we already promote the core aspects of British values through the SMSC (Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural) work that is integrated throughout every year group. We recognise that such development is most successful when those values and attitudes are promoted by all the staff and provide a model of behaviour for pupils. As stated in our aims, we wish to:
provide a culture of tolerance, mutual respect and a foundation for our pupil’s spiritual development, underpinned by a clear Christian ethos.”
As a school community, we value and celebrate this country’s diverse heritage. Alongside this, we value being part of Britain. In general terms this means that we celebrate traditions in the course of the year, for example, Harvest Festival and Remembrance Day during the Autumn term.
In addition, through the ethos of the school and the systems in place, British values are reinforced in the following ways:
Within the Junior and Senior School we have two school councils which meet regularly. The school council, which is elected in a democratic way, is the pupils’ opportunity to raise issues, organise events and activities for the school and put forward their suggestions for new initiatives. We have also held mock parliamentary elections within school. Through all areas of the curriculum and at all stages pupils are taught the importance of listening to others and their viewpoint, allowing the pupils to gain a full understanding of democracy.
The rule of law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced at Adcote. Pupils are taught from an early age the rules and values of our school. The Junior School Stars and the House Points systems reward pupils for, amongst other things, good work, helpfulness and good levels of effort. Equally, the consistency shown in dealing with negative behaviour ensures that all children learn the importance of laws, not just within school but within the community and country.
Making the right choices and being responsible for them are important principles at Adcote and they are reinforced throughout the school. All children receive equal opportunities and are encouraged to be independent in making the choice that is right for them. Our pupils are actively encouraged to make informed choices, knowing that they are in a safe and a supportive environment. We provide boundaries for pupils to do this, thus empowering them to make good decisions. This also incorporates understanding how to remain safe through PSHE and E-safety sessions in ICT lessons. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our aims as a school. Pupils at Adcote learn that their behaviour has an effect on their own rights and those of others. Listening to others and behaving as we would want others to behave towards us are important features of everyday school life.
Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
At Adcote, we actively promote diversity through our celebrations of different faiths and cultures. School assemblies, Religious Education lessons and PSHE lessons reinforce messages of tolerance and respect for others. Members of different faiths and religions are invited in to speak in class and at whole school assemblies and, at various stages of their time at Adcote, the children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths. As a boarding school we welcome a number of pupils from many different countries and faiths into our tolerant school community.
Through the study of British history, pupils at our school are taught to understand the different periods in our history in a chronological order. In addition, cross curricular topic work linked to the study of specific periods in British history underpins notions of our shared heritage, values and traditions. ‘English Tea Club’ is an extra-curricular activity which focuses on the English culture allowing an appreciation of it and leading to discussions about respecting each other’s cultures.
Commitment to charity work
We encourage our pupils to participate in and support good causes and charities. The school has a large and active Rotary Club. This charity work reinforces that there are large numbers of people both at home and overseas who are much less fortunate than ourselves and who deserve our support. The school and its pupils and staff support a range of charities each year to underline and reinforce this value in the school.
All staff at Adcote strive to ensure that our pupils leave with the strongest foundation of values upon which to build a successful life and make a positive contribution to our society.