At Margaret McMillan Primary School, one of our core values is to prepare children for the future and the opportunities of adult life. We are committed to preparing pupils positively for life in modern Britain, and promote the acceptance and engagement of 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.
Democracy is embedded at the school. 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 their opinions and voices heard. Children are involved in the Democratic process and have the opportunity to air their opinions and ideas through an elected student council. We have assemblies based around the theme of Democracy and links to curriculum units. We also have links within the community, with local MP’s and Councillors visiting the school to speak to pupils.
Rule of Law
The importance of laws whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced. We have a school behaviour policy, which children are involved in the review of via the student council. Each class also discusses and sets its own rules 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. Our 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. We also engage with parents/carers through questionnaires regarding their views on behaviour and safety. Police and Community support officers visit the school to discuss topics relating to road safety, internet safety and other issues.
Responsibility and Liberty
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. Our pupils are expected to know and understand their responsibility regarding behaviour and learning attitudes in school, as well as developing an understanding of their responsibility within the wider community. This is encouraged through links with local and national charity fundraising. Using Restorative practice, pupils get a greater sense of how their behaviour affects others, and take responsibility for conflict resolution through communication and developing supportive connections with their peers. 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 clearly seen in our e-safety and P.S.H.E. lessons.
One of the core values of our school is to nurture the qualities of compassion, understanding and respect for those around them and for those different from themselves. The importance of mutual respect is linked to our Assembly topics. It is also taught in the classroom through the RE curriculum and the BLP scheme, as well as through special events like Anti-bullying week. Mutual respect amongst their peers is emphasised through schemes such as Buddy reading, Playground friends, Restorative practice and local Sporting partnerships. Whilst Assessment for Learning and community events, like the local Fogbank, encourage mutual respect between pupils and adults.
Another of our core values is to develop awareness of the diversity of our society, and encourage tolerance of those who have different faiths and beliefs. We follow the locally agreed R.E. syllabus that includes study of all major faiths. This includes visits to a range of places of worship, such as the Hindu Minder, as well as visitors to school from many different faiths. In our assemblies, we include stories from various cultures from around the world, and we have workshops around school which introduce children to a wide variety of cultural practices, such as African drumming and Brazilian dancing. We have an equalities policy in place which is aimed at eliminating discrimination and advancing equality of opportunity.