Promoting Fundamental British Values
PSHE AND WHOLE SCHOOL INVOLVEMENT
As a school we provide a wide range of experiences within our PSHE Curriculum which promote British Values. The PSHE sessions from Year One to Year six support and outline the Parliamentary voting system and emphasise the value of living in a democratic society. Sessions in Key Stage One for example Essential, Non-essential and Desirable discuss how life in Britain is very different to poorer places in the world and helps the students understand the value of living in a country where certain things are considered essential, clean water, electricity etc. compared to countries where those things are desirable. In Key Stage two, the level of questioning is increased to voicing your opinions and concerns through the session Where Do You Stand? This session promotes the power of free speech which can only be enjoyed when living in a country which allows the opportunity and encourage persuasive speech to get your point of view across to others in a safe and democratic way.
The Head teacher, Senior leadership team and all staff support the promoting of British Values through the curriculum and the school ethos of respecting others.
We have recently added an item to our school assembly list. Each British Saint’s day we hold a whole school assembly and mark the day with a Power Point Presentation of the Saint and what they represent to the British People.
Headgirl & Headboy - These two pupils have been chosen by the Senior Leadership Team for their supportive character, empathy to their peers, are excellent role model and are good ambassadors for the school. They welcome visitors to the school.
School Council - Our School Council representatives are elected by their peers via an anonymous voting process. In the upper key stage classes the students who wish to act on behalf of their class on the Council are required to produce a manifesto on how they will help to support the school and possibly implement change. They are then encouraged to read their speech to both their peers to “persuade” the students to select them as the best representative for their class (this is overseen by the class teacher) Once elected the representatives meet every four weeks with the support of a member of the Senior Leadership Team and invited guests to discuss the issues raised by their peers. The democratic process within the school is such that, the students raise their views, the Council discusses the issue, the issue is then passed to the Head teacher for a decision to be made. Feedback is then given to the students at a specially arranged meeting within their class.
Meeting dates, times and subjects to be discussed are displayed within the school hall in order for any items of discussion to be fully advertised to all concerned and allow time for each class to fully investigate their views and opinions on the matter.
Members of the School Council visit the Houses of Parliament to look at how Members of Parliament act on behalf of their local constituents.
After School Clubs
The after school clubs offered at St Mary’s have been developed after careful consideration and discussion with the students as to preference and need. The school offers a wide range of clubs which allow both lower and upper key stage students to participate in activities such as Sports, Gymnastics and other creative classes to further develop physical skills and promote effective social and creative skills. St Mary’s encourage all of our students to “do their best” and will create an emotionally healthy environment to help them achieve their potential.
Rewards and Recognitions
At St Mary’s we offer a host of rewards to recognise both individual and team achievement. Individually students can be awarded the Golden Child award. This award is presented weekly in Friday’s whole school Celebration assembly and is given in recognition of a students work throughout the week or overcoming a personal challenge. Special achievements are recognised with a Head teacher award. This award is presented by the Head teacher during a whole school assembly in response to nominations from other students or members of staff. Students across the school are awarded, Shields or merits. These awards are presented by the class teacher or other staff member who have noticed the student’s hard work or good behaviour choices either in class or around the school.
At St Mary’s school we strive to include the whole community in our rewards scheme. After each Celebration assembly the students who have achieved the Golden Child, Head Teacher Awards have their photograph taken to be put in the School newsletter for all of the St Mary’s school community to see and acknowledge the achievements of our students.
As a school we use the school newsletter to keep our students, staff, parents and community up to date with all events which happen in school. Whenever a student has represented the school at a sporting event or extra- curricular activity their efforts are acknowledged with their photograph and a short report about the event they have been involved in.
At St Mary’s we have four “houses”. They are our teams within the school. St George, St David, St Patrick and St Andrew. Every student and member of staff are allocated to a team. Points are awarded in the student’s house colour thus promoting a sense of team spirit across the school.
The House points are also part of the team award scheme at St Mary’s. At the end of each term the number of Shields achieved by each house are calculated and the winning team is presented with the House Cup.
At the end of each academic year, two Year six students, one girl and one boy, are presented with the Sisters of Mercy Award. These awards are in recognition of their work within the school with their peers, staff and the wider community. The nominations for these awards are from members of staff across the school including the Head teacher and members of our church community. Students are also eligible to be nominated to receive a Diocesan award 'Citizen of the Year award'. The award is presented in Brentwood cathedral each year to pupils who have been recognised as being an outstanding citizen for the work that they do for their school, local and global community. Last year St Mary’s award was presented to a year six boy.
A 100% attendance certificate and special treat is awarded to every pupil who has 100% attendance for each full term at special attendance assemblies. A special award is given to every pupil who has 100% attendance for the complete school year.
Pupils receive swimming certificates when they have successfully completed a swimming level during swimming lessons. These awards are presented during celebration assemblies. Each week the class teacher will select a pupil who has completed a piece of writing/poetry worthy of a prize. Pupils will receive a ‘Writer of the Week’ pencil.
Roles and Responsibilities
At St Mary’s we allow students the opportunity to develop their leadership and social skills in a number of varying roles.
House Captains - Each house has a house captain. The students asked to carry out this role are selected for their ability to promote team work. The students selected hold this responsibility throughout year six and play an integral role in choosing the students who will take their place when they move onto senior school.
Prefects - They monitor our corridors and classrooms during playtimes and lunchtimes to promote safety and good behaviour choices.
School Council - Two representatives from each class from Year One to Year Six who are elected by their peers. The Student Council meet every weeks to discuss items raised by the students across the school and are an integral part of the school democratic system. The students selected remain in post throughout the academic year.
Eco/H&S Council - We are proposing to introduce Eco/Health & Safety Committee. Representatives from Key Stage two will be selected and will meet each half term to discuss the ways school can best support the environment and improve the school energy efficiency and Health and Safety around the school. The students selected are chosen for their aptitude in recognising environmental issues which can impact on the school community and the world we live in, but also recognising how we need to be safe in school. This is a role which the students will hold throughout the academic year.
Sports Captains - Two students, one boy and one girl, from each house in Year Six are selected by the school PE Co-ordinator to support PE lessons across the school. This is a role they hold throughout the year.
Working with the wider community
St Mary’s students and staff work closely with members of the wider community through our church, Lady Star of the Sea and agencies working for and with the local authority.
Students regularly support our church with Mass and fund raising through the Christmas Bazaar. Non-Uniform days are held to raise vital funds for Macmillan Cancer Trust, St. Lukes Hospice, Little Havens Hospice and the Brentwood Catholic Children’s Society to name but a few. We have representatives from these charities speak at special assemblies to re-enforce how these charities help so many people.
St Mary’s play an active role in the Harvest Festival date in the school calendar. This year the students and staff supported Thurrock Food Bank by bringing in provisions for the local families in need of this support.
Remembrance Day is a focal point for us as a school. Our year six students sell poppies and other items linked to this date. The date is also a time for reflection in assembly and across the curriculum.
Each year we actively participate in the Government driven Anti-bullying week. Classes are given activities linked to the subject to promote the clear message of “No tolerance to bullying”. St Mary’s will continue to work with the local community to promote cohesion within our society.
The impact of Promoting Fundamental British Values
We, at St Mary’s believe that we provide our students with the opportunities to develop their self-esteem, self-knowledge and self- confidence through the PSHE Curriculum, reward schemes, responsibilities, opportunities to explore the wider community and all aspects of awareness of British Values we have within our school
Our school behaviour policy clearly outlines the expectations of our staff and students and we strenuously emphasise the difference between right and wrong choices and the impact these choices will have on self and others. As a school we use the tool of Restorative Practise to further develop the student’s awareness of their actions.
We have strong community links with the Church, charities and local authority agencies. Students are encouraged to use the local amenities available to them, St Mary’s offers an open door policy to visitors and Students are included in the welcoming of all who come into our school.
We as school have a diverse student community with many cultures and nationalities represented. Students and staff are encouraged to develop a wider knowledge of our local community and the wider world. This is especially apparent when we celebrate our annual Heritage day and parents, local businesses and community members come into school to share their own experiences of life outside of Tilbury.
Giving all of the students the opportunities we offer at St Mary’s promotes a feeling of self-worth and gives way to students making an active and positive contribution to themselves and those around them. It develops strength of character to overcome challenges and improves their life chances to reach their potential enhancing their job prospects and allowing them to “live their dreams”.
Each year a Year 6 pupil will be selected for the Brentwood Catholic Citizenship Award. The pupil will be selected if they have portrayed the St.Mary’s Way during their time at St.Mary’s. At the end of the academic year, two pupils from Year 6 will be awarded the Sisters of Mercy Award. This is for their contribution, educationally, spiritually and morally to their peers and teachers at the school.