British Values Statement
At Ormiston Victory Academy we recognise not only the importance of supporting our students in achieving academically but also embrace our wider role in safeguarding their wellbeing and preparing them for their adult life. Part of our role in that preparation is ensuring that we promote and reinforce British values to our students.
The Government set out its definition of British values in the Prevent Strategy (Home Office, 2011) and subsequently The Prevent Duty: Departmental Advice for Schools and Childcare Providers (DfE 2015). It stated that:
“Schools and childcare providers can … build pupils’ resilience to radicalisation by promoting fundamental British values and enabling them to challenge extremist views. It is important to emphasise that the Prevent duty is not intended to stop pupils debating controversial issues. On the contrary, schools should provide a safe space in which children, young people and staff can understand the risks associated with terrorism and develop the knowledge and skills to be able to challenge extremist arguments” (DfE, 2015 p5.)
These “fundamental British values” are considered to be democracy, rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs. At Ormiston Victory Academy these values are openly promoted and are embedded throughout the academy community.
The examples that follow are an indication of some of the many ways we seek to embed British values at Ormiston Victory Academy and aim to provide an insight into our approach rather than an exhaustive list.
Democracy is an important value at our academy. Students have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council (Baraza), which is based on an East African concept where everyone has an equal right to be heard and express their opinions. The election of members of Baraza is a democratic process, as is the election of sports captains. Democracy is also a theme explored through assemblies and the weekly Citizenship programme held during dedicated form time sessions. Our student ambassadors also play a key role in informing decision making in the academy with each group focusing on a specific remit including Learning & Teaching, Raising Achievement, Transition and Literacy.
The rule of law
The importance of laws whether those which govern the academy or the country are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days. Students are taught the values and reasons behind rules and laws; that they govern and protect us, the individual responsibilities involved and the consequences when laws are broken. Our behaviour policy is clear, understood by students consistently applied. Rewards are given to students demonstrating good attitudes, positive acts of citizenship and good behaviour. Work with our designated partnership PCSO and regular visits by other community stakeholders also help reinforce the importance of abiding by rules and the law of the land.
At Ormiston Victory Academy students are actively encouraged to make independent choices knowing that they are in a safe, secure and supportive environment. As an academy we educate and provide boundaries for students to make choices safety, through the provision of a safe environment and an empowering education. Students are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights, responsibilities and personal freedoms and receive advice about how to exercise these safely eg. through our exploration of e-safety issues (embedded throughout the curriculum), a wide variety of assemblies and the Citizenship form time programme.
Our academy ethos and behaviour policy are based around central values such as ‘respect’ and ‘responsibility’ and these values are modelled by students and staff alike. Respect for both others and ourselves are concepts which we value tremendously, underpin everything we do and are reiterated through our classroom and learning environments. Ormiston Victory Academy is committed to listening to our students and they are always able to voice their opinions. We foster an environment where students know that it is acceptable to hold an opinion which differs from others’ and feel safe to respectfully disagree with each other. Mutual respect is embraced throughout the curriculum from the concept of ‘fair play’ in PE tothe plethora or group work and performance opportunities across the academy.
Anti-bullying assemblies, SMSC lessons and our Citizenship programme, all reflect our commitment to mutual respect. Equally our impressive student-led charity work helps in teaching mutual respect as well as reinforcing our links with the local community. Children and adults alike are challenged if they are disrespectful in anyway.
Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
We endeavour to enhance students’ understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by provide them with opportunities to experience such diversity. We run a number of trips abroad throughout the academic year from which our students gain valuable experience of other cultures and languages and also regularly welcome visiting teachers and students from other countries and faiths who share their language and culture with our students thereby enriching their experiences. We have a growing number of EAL (English as an Additional Language) students who are also able to impart their cultural differences. Additionally, key dates for the major world religions are celebrated on our digital notice boards throughout the academic year. Our SMSC and RE curricula and our form time Citizenship programme provide a broad and balanced education on a range of faiths, religions and cultures.
Should you feel that the school is not meeting the requirement to promote fundamental British values, please contact the Principal’s PA to arrange a meeting to express your concerns. Equally, if you feel that anyone employed by the academy is undermining these values you should also report this.
Click here for some samples of the other information in the academy regarding British Values.
Click here for the Scheme of Learning followed by Year 9 students as part of their core curriculum in SMSC.
Check out our Charity Blog to find out about our latest charity work.