Fundamental British Values
Great Leighs is a small village school with a largely white British intake, although the school greatly values the contribution from its small ethnic minority groups. School values underpin the way in which the whole school works; respect, understanding and working together enable our community to facilitate the best possible learning environment. In all that we do we aim to establish an understanding of democracy, the need to follow rules in society, respect and tolerance for all through learning about different cultures and traditions and an understanding of the importance of individuality and liberty within a safe environment and structure.
The importance of pupils’ thoughts and opinions are high within the school. Classes vote annually for their School Council representatives and work fortnightly with their representatives in discussing areas for improvement in terms of opportunities and learning. The School Council has been responsible for the introduction of a tuck shop, a new school uniform, Forest School days for KS2 pupils and judging our annual cake competition. Family Captains are also voted for annually by their families and these captains are responsible for arranging/picking teams for the school half termly sporting competitions. All Year 6 pupils have the opportunity of being a School Prefect, whose role includes working with and supervising classes during wet play times, monitoring the corridors at lunch and break and buddying up with our Foundation Stage pupils particularly for reading. Volunteers from Year 6 are trained to be Peer Mentors – and work with children who have play time issues. Volunteers from each class also lead our Keep Healthy Crew who meet regularly with staff, parents and governors to discuss ways of teaching and informing the rest of the school about healthy living.
Through assemblies, annual class/school rule discussions, PSHE sessions and adult role models, pupils at Great Leighs are clear about expected behaviours. Positive behaviour reinforcement is the main path followed by staff and discussion with pupils regarding unacceptable behaviours takes place when appropriate. Children are aware of sanctions used in their class and the use of white and red slips home to parents should they be deemed necessary. Visitors such as our local PCSO and fire brigade and visits such as Year 6 to Crucial Crew, enable our pupils to see the need for rules in society and the consequences of breaking these rules.
Centrally we aim to teach our pupils the importance of respect and tolerance for each other and members of their local, national and world wide community; only through teaching of different cultures, traditions and religions will pupils understand difference. Assemblies, RE teaching, cultural days, a variety of musical, art and dance experiences, visitors from other faiths and visits to a variety of places of worship as well as the study of life in other countries throughout our curriculum enables our pupils to have a broad understanding and tolerance of diversity. Our Multicultural Assembly every Tuesday teaches important celebration and festival days; visits to our local church and to the Hindu Temple at Neasden broaden our pupils’ understanding of a variety of faiths. Pupils in school share their personal faith, traditions and cultures where possible and the school community as a whole has a better understanding of life in other cultures through its partner school in Ghana.
Bullying is not tolerated in school and through PSHE lessons, listening to children’s concerns via the School Council and in some cases parents, issues arising are dealt with quickly and effectively. Annually pupils take part in Anti-Bullying Week and Safer Internet Day when issues around bullying and cyber-bullying are shared and guidance for prevention is given.
Each year our pupils take part in the Chelmsford Junior Music Festival, the Infant Music Festival, the Barnardo’s Carol Service and regular enrichment days with children from our local cluster of schools enabling them to integrate with children from other places and cultures. Within our local community our pupils have the opportunity to take part in the church’s Christingle Service, Medieval Day, and Village Carol Celebrations. In school our School Council suggests charities to support which has included: Chelmsford Homeless (Harvest time), Christmas boxes for Samaritan’s Purse, Farleigh Hospice, the Royal British Legion, Comic Relief and Red Nose Day.
As a British village school certain traditional aspects continue within our school: annual recognition and understanding of Remembrance Day, Christian Festivals of Christmas and Easter (through productions or school assemblies), celebration of Mothering Sunday, traditional maypole dancing in the summer term along with a celebration of music, dance and gymnastics in our Proms in the Playground. Fundamentally as a school we promote the value of kindness to all regardless of background, culture or faith and encourage all to draw out the best from each other.
All about British Life and culture – how much do you know?
British customs and traditions are famous all over the world. The British Life and Culture website will tell you some of the fascinating facts and information about our beautiful country, in a way that is easy to read and to understand. When people think of Britain they often think of people drinking tea, eating fish and chips and wearing bowler hats, but there is more to Britain than just those things. Click here to find out more.