Statement on the Promotion of British Values
Background and Rational
Though it has acquired a great urgency in recent months, the importance of schools espousing British Values is not new:
The 2008 National Curriculum includes the following statement:
“The school curriculum should contribute to the development of pupils’ sense of identity through knowledge and understanding of the spiritual, moral, social and cultural heritages of Britain’s diverse society and of the local, national, European, Commonwealth and global dimensions of their lives.”
The 2012 Teachers’ Standards state, as part of teachers’ personal and professional conduct:
“Teachers uphold public trust in the profession and maintain high standards of ethics and behaviour, within and outside school, by: not undermining fundamental British values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect, and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”
These values support the national Prevent Strategy put before Parliament in 2011 by the Home Secretary as a response to radicalisation of British citizens.
The Prevent Strategy (See Safeguarding) recognises the importance of schools in counter-terrorism activities. More recently, a number of OFSTED inspections revealed a failure to promote British values adequately in some schools, meaning that young people in them were vulnerable to radical and extremist ideas. Consequently, all schools need a clear statement of British values and how they are promoted through the school’s curriculum.
What is meant by “British Values”?
British Values are defined by OFSTED as: Acceptance and engagement with the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs; pupils develop and demonstrate skills and attitudes that will allow them to participate fully in and contribute positively to life in modern Britain.
Although some people may argue that these values are not uniquely “British” there can be no doubt that they are fundamental to life in Britain and as such they are actively promoted by this school in order to prepare young people for life in modern Britain.
How does our school go about promoting these values?
We believe that the following list exemplifies some of the British Values held dear by British citizens:
Respect of the rule of law
Appreciation of the rights of others
The promotion of opportunities for all
Support for those who cannot, by themselves, sustain a dignified life-style
Religious tolerance and respect for cultural diversity
Treating others with fairness
Participation in community life
The contribution to, as well as the benefit from, cultural and economic resources.
At Bovington Primary School we believe that our values, found on the school’s website, makes explicit our fundamental belief in these British Values.
One of our values explicitly states:
This statement is the foundation of our work with our pupils.