British Values (Social, Moral and Cultural Development)
Each year begins with a democratic process where each class can nominate representatives for our school council, The Board of Backworth Park. As children progress through school, this process becomes more like a real election with candidates preparing their own manifesto to secure a vote. All children have opportunity to complete voting slips to elect their Board of Backworth representative. As children are involved in this process, they are encouraged to see the link with real politics, and to know about the main political parties and how Government works. This year, they we are also able to consider democracy in light of Brexit.
Once Board of Backworth is established, the council meets every week with an agreed agenda and, whilst they are supervised by an adult, they do have a nominated Chair and Vice-Chair in Year 6 who lead the meetings. The council put out an agenda for all classes to discuss prior to the meeting and each class representative then brings the views of the class back to the meeting.
Any pupil or member of staff can bring an item to be placed on the agenda for discussion but the key focus areas are school priorities, supporting charities and school development.
Rule of Law
At Backworth Park Primary School, we are very conscious that an important part of our work is to create productive members of a future society. To this end, it is really important that children learn about how society operates and the importance of being able to live in a way that does not negatively affect others.
Every school year, at the start of term, we have a major focus on citizenship, school rules and behaviour management. Children learn about parts that we play in society and how our actions affect those around them.
Each class have a weekly ‘Board of Backworth’ meeting to discuss any matters arising in school, any wider issues across school and nominations for pupils to receive the ‘Board of Backworth Award’ for excellent contribution to school life over the week.
Daily assembly sets the tone for the day in terms of our high expectations and, over the year, children work towards half termly awards for ‘consistently’ good behaviour.
Respect and Tolerance of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Children need to learn how to show respect for others and understand that difference is not only acceptable, but welcome. Children know that everyone is welcome in our school.
We have strong links with St. Mark’s Church and Father Tony visits school each Thursday to host assembly and to teach about Christian values and ideas. Children also have opportunity to visit St. Marks to see the workings of the Church.
Backworth Park Primary also pays for Phil Andre, a multi-cultural teacher, to visit us each term to lead assemblies and to deliver lessons to each year group about a particular religion, based on a theme such as methods of worship. Children always meet back together in assemblies to share work. This means that children get an overview of a range of religions whilst learning about one in depth each year.
In addition, P.C. Gary, our school policeman, and ‘Show Racism the Red Card’ do annual work with children around tolerance and respect. Daily assembly and class work also ensure that this message is constantly reinforced.
Any complaints about lack of tolerance or respect for others on school premises, are followed up stringently.
Development of Skills and Attitudes to Contribute Positively to Life in Modern Britain
Children are encouraged to value the school building and contents and to see the link between finance and material possessions. They follow the school rules, which they see daily during assembly.
Each class representative feeds views into the Board of Backworth about any matters arising in school that children wish to address and children understand that this is a democratic process.
Children learn about key figures in history who have contributed to positive changes to society and consider how they can emulate these ideas. Children have a lot of opportunities for learning about Great Britain and the wider world around us.
Older children are encouraged to support younger children at key times such as assemblies and lunch times. They are also encouraged to volunteer in the community when possible for example, singing at Eccles Grange or helping the Shiremoor Treat.
Children learn about careers each term starting in nursery and they enjoy visitors who speak to them about career prospects for the future.
All children are aware of individual targets that they have and work towards these with an evaluative attitude.
A huge variety of extra-curricular activities are available to promote a positive mental attitude and team spirit. Children learn about healthy competition and how working together can make us stronger.
The Shiremoor Treat is celebrated in school, as well as having the actual event on the first weekend in July, which is a long-standing tradition designed originally by the miners as an annual family picnic.
Children visit the River Tyne and learn about the industries that were prevalent in the area. They know also that we live in the North East of England and know about various places along the coast such as local landmarks such as St. Mary’s Lighthouse and Tynemouth Priory. Some of our teachers come from across the river so we have some fun discussions about being a ‘Geordie’.
Children also learn about the world wars and commemorate November 11th each year, both in school, and at local ceremonies by making poppies, watching clips, carrying out research, singing and reading poetry.
Artistic, Sporting and Cultural Opportunities
Each class makes regular visits out of school to visit local places of interest and these can have artistic or historical significance. Children enjoy visits to museums and art galleries and sporting venues.
The art coordinator, leads on art in school and plans a range of activities across the year to allow children to appreciate and create art.
The music coordinator organises the school choir and musicians to join us for performance. She also ensures that children sing regularly and in public.
The PE coordinator leads on sport across school and all children take part in competitive and non-competitive games each year across a variety of sports. Whatever sport is on offer, we will put a team together for. We also have trips to support local teams, for example, Newcastle Falcons. Many children become ‘sports leaders’ and play an active part in supporting others.
All teachers plan a rich diet of opportunities across the year so that learning opportunities in all areas are maximised.
Download and view Promoting Fundamental British Values as part of SMSC in schools, published by the Department for Education in November 2014.