British Values & SMSC
Promotion of British Values
The government set out their definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy. These were reinforced in September 2014. These new regulations will sit alongside the requirements of the Equalities Act, which also applies to all school.
Promoting British Values at Bedale High School
The Department for Education’s five-part definition of British values includes:
- The rule of law
- Individual liberty
- Mutual respect
- Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
At Bedale High School students will encounter these principles throughout everyday school life across the curriculum, through our whole school ethos, through our extra-curricular program and specifically through our general studies program.
Our Senate (student voice group) plays a strong role in our school. They are elected by their class peers and are involved in making the school a better place to be and learn. Students have a great amount of input in to improvements to the school environment including the school behaviour policy, sanctions and rewards. The school also values pupil input through their responses to the confidential: “Growing Up in North Yorkshire Survey”. Student questionnaires and interviews are also conducted throughout the year. We know that the active participation of our students will sow the seeds for a more sophisticated understanding of democracy in the future.
The Rule of Law
Our students will encounter rules and laws throughout their entire lives. We want our students to understand that whether these laws govern the class, the school, the neighbourhood or the country,
they are set for good reasons and must be adhered to. This understanding of the importance of rules will be consistently reinforced through assemblies and our curriculum. The involvement of our students in the creation of the school rules helps them to understand the reasons behind the rules and the consequences if they are broken. Through our general studies program we allow opportunity to debate and discuss the reasons for laws so that students can recognize the importance of these for their own protection. Throughout the year we welcome visits from members of the wider community including police and war veterans. We believe that clear explanations and contextualizing learning emphasis the importance of the rule of law for our students.
We invest a great deal of time in creating a positive culture in our school, so that students are in a safe environment where choice and freedom are encouraged. In lessons, students often have a choice of learning tasks, specifically in relation to hope learning. We encourage students to choose a task which will challenge them, giving them more freedom to determine their own learning. We offer a range of clubs which students have the freedom to choose from, based on their interests. Through our general studies program, we educate children on their rights and personal freedoms as well as supporting them in recognizing how to exercise these freedoms safely. At Bedale High School we believe that valuing choice and freedom in daily school life will foster values of individual liberty as the students embark upon their adult lives.
Mutual respect is at the core of our school life and is emphasized through the “5 R’s +1” focus, the +1 being respect. Students learn to treat each other and staff with respect. This is evident when walking around the school and in the classrooms.
Tolerance of Those with Different Faiths and Beliefs
At Bedale High School we offer a culturally rich and diverse curriculum in which all major religions are studied and respected. We strongly believe that tolerance is gained through knowledge and understanding. Through both our curriculum and the routines of our daily school life we strive to demonstrate tolerance, helping students to become knowledgeable and understanding citizens who can build a better society for the future. The section on this website under General Studies outlines specifically where this is addressed within the program.