The values of democracy, rule of law, respect and tolerance have always been embedded and promoted not just in teaching, learning and assemblies at St Paul’s but in all aspects of school life. This is evident in annual School Council elections, explanation and observance of fair rules, respect for the wider community and for all people regardless of faith or ethnicity.
British values and celebrating being part of Britain are all embedded throughout our school year. Not only do we celebrate traditional British events such as Christmas (with a Nativity play and Fair), Easter, Harvest Festival and Remembrance Day, we mark significant festivals in other faiths, such as Diwali, Eid and Passover. We also celebrate a range of other national events that have an impact on British life including Jubilees, Olympics and World Cups. Throughout KS1 and KS2, pupils gain insight into British and world history and cultural life through educational trips, e.g. visits to temples, museums, rural sites, and cultural institutions such as the Royal Courts of Justice.
Pupils are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen carefully, and with concern, to each other, respecting the right of every individual to have his/her opinions and voice heard. Pupils also have the opportunity to air their opinions and ideas through our School Council and regular questionnaires. The elections of the School Council members are based solely on pupil votes, reflecting our British electoral system and demonstrating democracy in action. Democracy is also an element of our PSHE curriculum and during KS2 children have opportunities to explore democracy through local and national political systems.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, is consistently reinforced. Our behaviour policy sets out key principles for behaviour and each class discusses and sets rules, which are clearly understood by all and seen to be necessary to ensure that every class member is able to learn in a safe and ordered environment. Our pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws - that they govern and protect us – as well as the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. In KS2 children have the opportunity to visit the Royal Courts of Justice to gain a deeper understanding of the legal system and its history.
Tolerance of Those With Different Faiths And Beliefs
The value of respect ensures tolerance of those who have different faiths and beliefs. St Paul’s enhances pupils’ understanding of different faiths and beliefs through Religious Education studies, including visits to a range of places of worship. Pupils and parents are also invited to talk about their own faith, as well as sharing cultural traditions such as food and dance. In this way, our pupils gain an enhanced understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices in a safe and supportive environment. As a school, we educate and provide boundaries for our pupils to make choices safely through the provision of a safe environment and an empowering education. Our pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely. Examples of this can be seen clearly in our e-safety and PSHE lessons. In addition, children have a wide choice of extra-curricular activities.
The pupils understand that respect is essential in order to exist in harmony with each other. It is expected that respect is shown to everyone, whatever differences we may have. The value of respect at St Paul’s underpins our work every day, both in and out of the classroom, and is also reflected in our Christian values.