In accordance with The Department for Education we aim to actively promote British values in schools to ensure young people leave school prepared for life in modern Britain. Pupils are encouraged to regard people of all faiths, races and cultures with respect and tolerance and understand that while different people may hold different views about what is ‘right’ and ‘wrong’, all people living in England are subject to its law.
The Key Values are:
rule of law
tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
The government sets out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy and at St. Matthew's Bloxam C E Primary School these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is promoted within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council and pupil questionnaires. The elections of School Council are based solely on pupil votes. Each teacher has different ways in which the pupils make their voices heard in their classroom e.g. through Circle Time, questionnaires and discussions, decisions over classroom rules and consequences for behaviour. We try to challenge injustice through our curriculum and Collective Worship themes which are based on the Christian values.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of rules, whether they be those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days and through Collective Worship and through PSHE. The children are taught right from wrong. 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. Visits from authorities such as the Police; Fire and Rescue Service; Road Safety Officers etc. are a regular part of our calendar and help reinforce this message. There is a clear code of conduct for all pupils. Work in RE on codes for living in different religions and the significance of the Golden rule for religious and non-religious people allow pupils to discuss the importance of this value.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing they are in a safe, supportive environment. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for pupils to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advise how to exercise these safely, for example through our Online Safety and PSHE lessons. Whether it be through choice of challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices. All classes work towards incentives where their choices affect outcomes for themselves personally as well as the whole class. We also try to give ownership of learning to the children and promote a personal investigative approach. At break and lunchtimes the children are allowed to use the outdoor spaces according to their personal choices. Our shared values in the school promote both staff and children as good role models and we take opportunities to challenge stereotypes whenever the opportunity arises. Opportunities are also taken to explore that with individual liberty and freedom comes responsibilities to the local community and the wider world.
Part of our school ethos and behaviour policy has revolved around Core Values such as 'Respect', and pupils have been part of discussions and Collective Worship related to what this means and how it is shown. Displays around the school promote Christian Values and these are reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as rewards and sanctions. The children themselves are peer mentors and have friendship benches which promote respect and friendships. Our equality and SEND policies reflect our core values. We support Anti-Bullying weeks in school. We promote respect through circle time and PSHE lessons. Opportunities are provided for children to learn to respect others through visits to and from people from other cultures. Charities are supported in school which promote respect and tolerance to others.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Collective Worship themes involve prejudices and are supported by learning in RE and PSHE. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. We celebrate festivals throughout the year from all the world religions. Visitors to school and visits to our link school in Leicester enhance our understanding. As part of our RE curriculum we visit places of worship.
The Maths curriculum is delivered in themed blocks around a broad unit of work. Children develop their skills and understanding of Maths through a range of concrete, pictorial and abstract activities and through doing this, pupils develop their fluency, problem solving and reasoning skills.
While every effort is made to cater for all different learners, at St Matthew’s Bloxam we work towards teaching for mastery in every class. This means, as much as possible, the whole class accesses the same task but the level of access may differ, depending on ability.
The school calculation policy shows the progression of skills developed across the year groups.
At the heart of every unit is a great work of literature, which we aim to get the children as deeply involved with as possible. This basic principle is advocated by The Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE). Teachers use the CLPE’s Power of Reading resources to support the delivery of a vibrant and relevant text-based curriculum.
Not only do children develop key skills in reading comprehension through studying texts in this way, there are numerous stimulating and inspiring writing opportunities which stem from using high-quality books.
The grammar, punctuation and spelling element of the curriculum is taught discretely and then consolidated through writing activities.
Phonics is a key area of the Early Years and Key Stage One curriculum at St Matthew’s Bloxam. We firmly believe that the teaching of high quality phonics underpins the core skills of both reading and writing.
Phonics is taught in small groups through a structured, fun, interactive progressive programme. Children are taught how to segment and blend words and are also taught for both reading and writing. From an early age children use the correct terminology such as phoneme, grapheme, digraph and split digraph. Children are also taught spelling patterns and rules through phonics sessions.
For more information see Children >> Phonics
Our ‘Topics’ encompass lots of different subjects, from History and Geography to Art and Design and Technology.
In EYFS, a theme is used to centre the acquisition of important early skills. In Key Stage One and Two, a termly focus of engaging Topics which cover all of the National Curriculum objectives.
In 2019, St. Matthew’s Bloxam, achieved the Primary Science Quality Mark, we enhance our Science curriculum through Science days, workshops and visitors coming to school.
The Teachers and some of the children have worked together to create our Science Principles ;
The children acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to become confident with a range of different technology and process, through a discreet, half-termly Computing theme.
Each half-term, children also learn about a different area of Internet Online Safety, which helps our pupils stay safe online.
Given our status as a Church of England school, we hold the teaching and learning of RE in the highest regard and the curriculum divides it focus between the teaching of the Understanding Christianity and Coventry and Warwickshire agreed syllabus. In this way, children learn about what it is to be a Christian and also the diverse range of other faiths and beliefs.
Our PHSE curriculum utilises the JIGSAW approach and Protective Behaviours which aims to develop children’s understanding of themselves and others.
We link the teaching of Sex and Relationships with our focus on PHSE and children’s scientific understanding of life cycles and puberty. Sexual reproduction is not taught in detail but some understanding of the human life cycle is necessary. The main focus is preparing children for the physical and emotional changes which take place in this important period of their lives.
We use the Charanga Musical School to support the planning and delivery of the Music curriculum.
We have joined the Primary Languages Network and use their scheme when teaching Spanish to children in Key Stage 2, while encouraging pride and interest in the native languages of our school community.
We are a Schools Games Mark: Silver Award and the curriculum that we offer is delivered by a range of different professionals. Teachers use The PE Hub to support the delivery of high-quality lessons in school, blessed with two main halls and expansive grounds.
In addition, we have a partnership with Harris Secondary School and we use their expertise and resources to provide lessons for our children and professional development for our staff. West Bromwich Albion FC are also regulars in school to deliver sessions and we also provide off-site swimming for our children as they move through the school.
St Matthew’s Bloxam has various ways in which we create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation to promote the fundamental British values of democracy; the rule of law; individual liberty; mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs. This definition of British values is set out in the 2011 Prevent Strategy.
These values are reinforced largely through the commitment to teaching a broad and balanced curriculum. More specifically, our collective worship programme includes time for reflection on all of the values, throughout the course of the year. Even more specifically, we dedicate a whole day to celebrating British values as part of our rolling programme of themed days!
There are also other ways in which the values are fed into school life. Democracy is richly embedded within the school. The School Council is an elected body and pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through them. Through our range of topics, children learn about the rule of law in numerous countries throughout the world and throughout history. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service form part of our curriculum and these help reinforce this message.
With regards to individual liberty, 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 all pupils to make choices safely. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely. The central theme of our school’s behaviour policy is that everyone has the right to feel safe and our restorative justice approach to resolving problems more often than not involves teaching children about mutual respect. The RE curriculum supports the value of tolerance, through the study of a diverse range of faiths and beliefs. We embrace our culturally rich and diverse school where children have unique opportunities to learn from each other by sharing and celebrating their different religions and backgrounds.