British Values Statement
Marland Hill Primary School is committed to serving its community. We recognise the multi-cultural, multi faith and ever-changing nature of the United Kingdom.
We aim to nurture our children on their journey through life so they can grow into safe, caring, democratic, responsible and tolerant adults who make a positive difference to British society and to the world. We encourage our children to be creative, unique, open-minded and independent individuals, respectful of themselves and of others in our school, our local community and the wider world.
We follow equal opportunities guidance which guarantees that there will be no discrimination against any individual or group, regardless of faith, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, political or financial status, or similar. Marland Hill is dedicated to preparing pupils for their adult life beyond the formal examined curriculum and ensuring that it promotes and reinforces British values to all its students.
The Government emphasises that schools are required to ensure that key ‘British Values’ are taught in all UK schools. The government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy.
The five British Values are:
• The rule of law
• Individual liberty
• Mutual respect
• Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
We use strategies within the National curriculum and beyond to secure such outcomes for students. The examples that follow show some of the many ways Marland Hill seeks to embed British values.
The principle of democracy is consistently being reinforced at Marland Hill, with democratic processes being used for important decisions within the school community, for instance, elections being held for Head Boy and Girl, School Council positions and in the wider community for the position of School’s Champion. The principle of democracy is also explored in the History and Religious Studies curriculum as well as in PSHE and assemblies.
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 Marland Hill.
Pupils are taught the rules and expectations of the school which are highlighted by the annual home school agreement that pupils, parents and teachers sign. Pupils are taught the value and the reasons behind laws that govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service reinforce this message.
Pupils are always helped to distinguish right from wrong. The Behaviour Policy sets out a zero tolerance approach to any form of aggression, abuse or violence.
Pupils are actively encouraged to make independent choices, with the knowledge that they are in a safe, secure and supportive environment. Staff at Marland Hill educate and provide boundaries for pupils to make informed choices, through a safe environment and an empowering education. Pastoral support reinforces the importance of making the right choices.
Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised on how to exercise these safely, for example through e-safety and circle time and PSHE work.
Vulnerable pupils are protected and there is a strong Anti-bullying culture at the school. We have Anti-bullying themed weeks and all staff and pupils take an active part in this. The school operates a robust policy of logging incidents. Pupils have key roles and responsibilities within school – e.g. School Council, Eco Committee, Head Boy / Girl.
Mutual Respect and Tolerance of Those with Difference Faiths and Beliefs
Respect is one of the core values at our school. Pupils know and understand that it is expected that respect is shown to everyone, adults and children. Pupils learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect and this is reiterated through its teaching and learning environments.
Mutual respect is embraced throughout the curriculum by providing the opportunity for pupils to express their views in a safe environment. Through the PSHE and RE curriculum pupils are encouraged to discuss and respect differences between people such as different faith, ethnicity, disability, gender, sexuality and difference of family situations.
To link together all of the five British Values pupils take part in Community Cohesion sessions. The project is based on bringing together children from local primary schools and the sixth form college. The pupils and mentors meet together to discuss creating a ‘New Town’ in the area. This Town must be a place where they will feel safe, valued and be given respect. The children work in mixed groups, with the support of mentors and discuss their ideals for a ‘New Town’. Positive lists are created of the attitudes, values and behaviours they believe the community should bring to their ‘New Town’. They also look at negative behaviours that they would not want to see.
The year’s Community Learning Sessions have a structure, which will eventually lead to the children and mentors writing speeches. These speeches are presented to local councillors and the local police, encompassing their views about the Town in which they live. The speeches are written quite passionately and include information about what they feel needs to be changed in their local community. Their three wishes for improvements in the local community are also presented to the councillors and police.
The children are organised into groups (one mentor from the college with one child from each primary school) to present their speeches and they are taken to a place of cultural heritage, which is the Town Hall in Rochdale. The event is also seen as a networking opportunity between the three schools. They are given a tour of the Town Hall, followed by a buffet, enabling time for social interaction between the schools to take place. Friendships over the three terms flourish and it becomes an excellent Secondary Transition Project. The children and mentors also participate in parachute games before they present their speeches, as many of them are nervous at performing a presentation in such a grand place.
The councillors and police respond to all the speeches after they are delivered. We have follow up visits from the councillors and police to ensure the children’s comments are given full attention. Following this event, the children also take a walk around the local area, highlighting to the police the ‘hot spots’ of their concern, which include drug related issues, alcohol and vandalism.
The project’s activities are enhanced by the active involvement throughout the year by the police, who join us for a number of sessions. The project also has a Magistrate and counsellors, who deliver sessions to the children and covers topics such as Young Offenders. Both headteachers attend sessions to ensure the children understand the importance of the project. The programme is interspersed with many games, which include parachute, bowls, musical interludes, red and blue rhythm sticks and many other games.
We offer a culturally rich and diverse curriculum in which all major religions are studied and respected.
Marland Hill strives endlessly to ensure that its students leave with the strongest foundation of values upon which to build a successful life and a successful contribution to our Society.