British Values

At St Thomas a Becket Roman Catholic School, we uphold and teach pupils about British Values, which are defined as:

  • Democracy
  • Rule of law
  • Individual liberty
  • Mutual respect
  • tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

These values are taught explicitly through Personal, Social, Health and Emotional (PSHE) and through our Religious Education. We also teach British Values through planning and delivering a broad and balanced curriculum.

The school takes opportunities to actively promote British Values through daily collective worship and whole school systems and structures such as electing and running a successful School Council. We also actively promote British Values through ensuring that our curriculum planning and delivery includes real opportunities for exploring these values.

At St Thomas a Becket Roman Catholic School, these British Values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:

Democracy:

Democracy is an important value at our school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through the School Council. The School Council meet weekly to discuss school issues/ideas, which have been brought to their attention through their own class. They are a successful group, who have raised money for charities, run stalls at our school Summer Fete and have been the pupil voice when we have had visitors from outside.  The election of the School Council members are based on pupil votes.

ST Thomas a Becket Roman Catholic School is based around Catholic values and each term we have a new focus. Our recent focus was ‘kindness’, where children received ‘Candles for Kindness’ on a weekly basis during whole school assemblies. Children and staff were able to recommend children for this award to those who have shown kindness in any shape or form.

The Rules of Law:

The importance of laws and rules, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days.

A consistently applied Behaviour Policy is shared with the children regularly during assemblies and class time. Expectations are reinforced regularly and opportunities are sought to frequently praise positive choices. Pupils’ modelling behaviour consistent with the school’s high expectations are recognised and used as role models to others.  Our prayer and reflection room in Key Stage 2 allows children the opportunity to reflect on their poor behaviour choices and tot discuss strategies they may use to resolve conflict.  Our Learning Mentor is based between both sites throughout the week to support children if need be.

Through assemblies and the school’s PSHE Curriculum, children develop an understanding of law appropriate to their age.

Visits from the local PSCOs, the Fire Service, Health Professionals and ‘People Who Help Us’ topics, reinforces their understanding of the responsibilities held by various professions.

To encourage and promote good behaviour, attitude and work, we have devised a reward system which is consistently followed throughout the school. This is shared as a celebration weekly in our Star Learner’s assemblies.

We are committed to praising children’s efforts. We endeavour to praise the children informally, individually, during group work, in front of the whole class and the whole school.  We also believe in positive communication with our parents, and therefore send postcards weekly to those children who have achieved a Star Learner Award.  Children are not only awarded for achievement in curriculum areas, but for their behaviour and general adherence to our school rules.

Rewards are given in the form of stickers, certificates, and positive behaviour systems present in individual classes. Visits to a senior member of staff is another reward to show good work or to praise positive behaviour, which is also frequently used throughout the whole school.

 

Individual liberty:

As a school we actively encourage pupils to make their own choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. Throughout the school we teach pupils that they have a right to feel safe. As a school we provide boundaries for our pupils to make choices safely, in a safe environment and planned curriculum. We also teach tour pupils that there is nothing they can not talk to an adult about. Furthermore we encourage pupils to understand and exercise their personal rights and freedom, and teach them to do so in a safe way, for example in e safety lessons, through the school blog and PSHE lessons.

Pupils are valued for their differences. Through a varied curriculum and after school activities we encourage and enable pupils to try new things, develop new skills and practise existing ones.

Time and care is taken to get to know each child as an individual. Regular opportunities are made to give children a chance to share their feelings and opinions in a safe way, such as through circle time. Furthermore the pupils have access to ‘place to talk’ at lunch times which is a safe space for pupils to go and discuss anything of importance to them, with a trained counsellor.

Many opportunities are given to pupils to take on more responsibility within the school for example in classes there are register monitors, along with various other roles with responsibilities. Furthermore the school council are used to voice the pupil’s opinions and ideas.

Mutual respect:

Our school ethos and behaviour policy centres on core Christian values such as ‘respect’ and ‘responsibility’. It is important that the pupils understand and display these values, so at the beginning of each academic year each class discusses and devises their own set of class rules. As the pupils created these set of rules they agree to adhere to them whilst at school. If pupils are disrespectful to one another it is dealt with immediately in accordance with the behaviour policy. Time is given to the pupil to reflect upon the behaviour and to talk about why it is disrespectful.  Where necessary sanctions will be put in place.

Tolerance of Those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:

This is achieved through enhancing pupil’s understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society. Within RE lessons pupils learn about a variety of Religions, along with their cultural practices. Within assemblies and collective worship, discussions involving prejudice and prejudice-based bullying have taken place and have been followed up in RE and PSHE lessons.

Bi yearly the school holds a multicultural week where the student learn about different cultures and religions. They get to experience some of the customs, taste a variety of food and learn about a variety of faiths celebrated in our school. Guest speakers are invited to talk to or run workshops with the children.

Resources are frequently audited to ensure that they reflect our multi-cultural society.