British values can play an important role in education and how well a school promotes such values, is an aspect of Ofsted inspections. British values are promoted in so much of what we do, not least during our school assemblies, events and spiritual, moral, social and cultural sessions (SMSC).
The term ‘British values’ might be slightly misleading in that these values are integral to so many countries throughout the world.
We aim to develop our pupils’ awareness of what it means to be British, not only through the topics that are studied in History, Geography, RE and PSHE, but also through the entire framework of our school community. Pupils are introduced to fundamental concepts like democracy, liberty and the rule of law, within an atmosphere of mutual respect and tolerance. While such ideas are fundamental in many communities and civilisations they also provide the bedrock for more specifically British values, customs and traditions, such as Remembrance Day, Harvest Festival – and even the annual trip to a pantomime!
As a school, we have always been aware of our responsibility to pass these values on to our pupils, but, more recently, Ofsted inspectors have begun to assess how effectively we carry out this task. There are so many other ways each of our pupils may be influenced, and so it is important that we provide them with a strong and healthy framework of ideas which allows them to question and reject extreme or destructive beliefs and to feel completely integrated as young citizens of this country.