British Values and Cultural Capital
The DFE (Department for Education) state that:
'Schools have the responsibility to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.'
(Department for Education)
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy. In June 2014, the DfE reinforced the need for “all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”
Preparing for life in Modern Britain: British Values
At Snape Wood Primary and Nursery School, we take very seriously our responsibility to prepare children for life in modern Britain, and promotes 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.
We ensure that the fundamental British Values are introduced, discussed and lived out through the ethos and work of the school.
Our school reflects British values in all that it does. We encourage our children to be creative, unique, open-minded and independent individuals, respectful of themselves and of others in our school, our local community and the wider world. We aim to nurture our children on their journey through life so they can grow into safe, caring, democratic, responsible and tolerant adults who make a positive difference to British Society and to the wider world.
At Snape Wood Primary, we aim to ensure that our PRIDE values align closely with British values and through these our pupils will become productive citizens of modern Britain. These values are threaded throughout school life and evident in pupils’ behaviour in all areas.
All curriculum areas provide a vehicle for furthering understanding of these concepts and in particular, our PSHE lessons which follow the SCARF scheme of work.
The Early Years Curriculum includes Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Understanding the World which help children to respect and value all people and provide opportunities to deepen and develop understanding. Children at Snape Wood, embrace these concepts with enthusiasm and demonstrate a good understanding of how to apply to their own lives.
Our school makes considerable efforts to ensure children have exposure to a wide experience beyond their local community during which these concepts are shown. Sporting events, a range of enrichment activities including trips and visitors and the use of outdoor education are planned to ensure children’s experiences are broad, meaningful and varied.
Their strong rooted ‘PRIDE Values’ understanding gives them an excellent platform for embracing difference.
What are British Values?
The government have asked schools to explain how they promote British values. It, and other institutions, have attributed specific values as being British, and these fall into the following broad areas:
How are British Values taught in our school?
Promoting British Values is a central part of teaching and learning. By promoting these we aim for children to become well-rounded members of society. These British Values are promoted through the curriculum, across the whole school. They are also seen in our school’s ethos and policies, assemblies, special events and cultural celebrations. Below are some examples of how each of the British Values are promoted in school.
SWPS PRIDE Values:
• Positive Attitude
At SWPS, British Values are taught and reinforced in the following ways:
How do we promote the Rule of Law?
The importance of rules and laws, whether they be those that govern our school or our country, are referred to and reinforced often, such as in assemblies and when reflecting on behaviour choices. At the start of the school year, each class discusses the school rules and class routines, principles that 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, these rules are displayed in each class. These rules play a fundamental role in our behaviour sanctions and rewards and are linked to our PRIDE values throughout school.
Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves, and the consequences when laws are broken. These values are reinforced in different ways:
How do we promote Individual Liberty?
Alongside rules and laws, we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. Through the provision of a safe, supportive environment, we provide boundaries for our pupils to make choices safely; for example:
•choices about how they can improve their learning
•choices around the participation in extra-curricular activities
Assemblies are used to both explore and support the school’s values. By teaching the children how to manage and understand emotions they will be motivated and equipped to:
How do we promote Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs?
SWPS is situated in an area which is not greatly culturally diverse, therefore, we place a great emphasis on promoting diversity with the children.
At SWPS, we will actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including ‘extremist’ views.
How do we promote Mutual respect?
Cultural capital is the accumulation of knowledge, behaviours, and skills that a child can draw upon and which demonstrates their cultural awareness, knowledge and competence; it is one of the key ingredients a pupil will draw upon to be successful in society, their career and the world of work.
Cultural capital gives power. It helps children achieve goals, become successful, and rise up the social ladder without necessarily having wealth or financial capital. Cultural capital is having assets that give children the desire to aspire and achieve social mobility whatever their starting point.
In the OFSTED school inspection handbook, Cultural capital it is defined:
“As part of making the judgement about the quality of education, inspectors will consider the extent to which schools are equipping pupils with the knowledge and cultural capital they need to succeed in life”.
Our understanding of ‘knowledge and cultural capital’ is derived from the following wording in the national curriculum: ‘It is the essential knowledge that pupils need to be educated citizens, introducing them to the best that has been thought and said and helping to engender an appreciation of human creativity and achievement.’
In participating in our ambitious school curriculum, we believe that exposure, not only to culture but also to situations in which the children might not have previous experiences of, is of paramount importance to their ongoing successes.
Gradually widening children’s experiences as they progress through school is an important step in providing rich and engaging learning across the curriculum. We plan carefully for children to have rich experiences in nursery and beyond.
At SWPS, we are developing children’s ‘Cultural Capital’ with exciting activities that are increasing the chances of our children having an educational advantage.
The following activities are a few of the educational advantageous in adding to a child's cultural capital at SWPS:
At SWPS we help children embed cultural capital within our curriculum by providing children with the following opportunities: