At St Margaret’s, the fundamental British Values of ‘democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs and for those without faith ’ are actively promoted throughout the year and our pupils are all proud of their heritage.
St Margaret’s has made a commitment to become a UNICEF Rights Respecting School. Each year the children contribute to and decide upon their class charter or golden rules. They discuss the rights associated with their decisions and refer to them frequently.
Children have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We have a School Council, with representatives from Reception through to Year 6, who are voted in by their class. Pupils from Years 5 and 6 can nominate themselves for one of the four Officer positions; each candidate has an opportunity to speak in a whole school assembly and pupils from Years 3 to 6 are then invited to take part in a vote. The Council meets regularly to discuss future developments which they present to the Headmistress. The Council has its own budget and is able to genuinely effect change within the School.
Year 6 pupils complete an annual survey in which they are able to put forward their views about the school and suggestions for the future.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they be ones that govern the class, the school or the country are consistently reinforced throughout the school day, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws; that they protect and govern us, and that there are responsibilities and consequences related to the keeping and breaking of such laws. Visits from authorities such as the police and fire service help reinforce this message.
Within St Margaret’s, all pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for children to make choices safely. They are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to undertake this safely. This may be through their choice of learning challenge, how they record, or participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Through positively modelling how to be respectful and tolerant of others, adults help the children to act in the same way during learning and play. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect.
Tolerance of those with Different Faiths and Beliefs and for those without Faith
St Margaret’s is situated in an area which does not have a significant cultural diversity. Therefore, we place a great emphasis on promoting this with the children. Assemblies are regularly planned to include the stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. Our RE, PSHEE and RRSA teaching further promotes and reinforces this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school; children also visit places of worship that are important to different faiths. Pupils also recognise and respect the fact that some people live without faith.
At St Margaret’s we actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including ‘extremist’ views.
Fundamental British Values