Schools have a duty to teach British Values including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of those of other faiths and beliefs. Teachers are required in the conduct section of their Standards, to uphold public trust in the profession by not undermining fundamental British Values. Widnes Academy expects all staff to model and teach these values. Our Equality Policy makes clear our intention to provide the best education we can for all of our learners regardless of race, faith, gender, age and sexual orientation.
Here at Widnes Academy our ethos is underpinned by our shared mission ‘To support, encourage and develop all members of our school community so that they grow in confidence, achieving to their highest potential within a learning environment based on respect and acceptance'. Our Community is key– we are all privileged to belong to the same community which is built on mutual respect, tolerance and understanding and reflected in the school values.
Learners, parents and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard at Widnes Academy. Some examples of democratic practice are:
School Council and Head Boy and Girl
The election of The School Council and Head Boy and Girl mirrors the British electoral system and demonstrates democracy in action. It gives our learners a voice on matters relevant to school life. Proposals made by its members can and do, have a real impact on our school community. These learners develop an understanding of democratic principles and gain experience of gathering information, sharing views and making decisions. The children are elected to the council through the vote of their peers.
Community Voice is actively sought
Reflection from learners, staff, parents and governors are frequently sought when seeking opinion and/or evaluating school initiatives. The school has a developing Parent Forum who meet regularly and liaise with senior leaders. These points of view all help to re-examine and build on the existing opportunities offered by the school.
School House systems.
The School House system provides House leadership and organisational opportunities for both staff and children. All children from Reception –Y6 are assigned to a House team.
The Rule of Law
The importance of rules, laws and standards, whether they are those that govern our country or school are frequently referred to across the school and reinforced in assemblies, personal tutor time and when necessary, to reflect on appropriate choices.
Some examples of the rule of law in practice are:
Across all subjects we model and teach the necessity for rules and guidelines.
At the start of each half term the Head Teacher delivers an assembly which allows learners to reflect on expected standards and school values. Every class member must be able to learn and contribute in a safe environment.
The curriculum allows for particular laws to be debated.
Clear systems of rewards and consequences.
The school’s Positive Behaviour System, ‘Good to be Green’ is followed by all staff and learners with weekly celebration assembly to recognise good behaviour and attitude. Children who have been recognised for hard work and positive progress will receive praise and will each take home an acknowledgement to their family so that they can share their success.
PSHCE and Whole School Assemblies
PSHCE and Whole School Assemblies are utilised for learners to develop an understanding of Community, Values and Law using our Picture News resources which focuses on current issues and topics. Healthy debate is encouraged and children are taught the value and reasons behind the laws that govern and protect us and the consequences when laws are broken.
Internet and Social Media
All learners and staff have been taught the risks attached to using the internet and how they can keep themselves and others safe. All staff and children sign a contract to adhere to the Acceptable Usage Policy for our school.
Tailored curriculum and provision that aims to meet their needs and aspirations
Through our revised curriculum and After School Clubs, children are offered a wide range of activities which support them to identify and develop their passions, abilities and talents.