Christian Ethos and Values
As a Church school we have a distinctive character where our Christian values of:
Respect Trust Forgiveness Perseverance Peace
are promoted in all aspects of school life. We encourage all members of the school community to promote a Christian ethos where care and respect is shown to everyone. As a Church school there are strong links with the Parish Church of St James'. Members of the church community are timetabled to lead worship several times over a half term using Open the Book techniques. Other members of the church visit regularly to support the school and the learning of the children.
Blakedown's Ethos Statement:
The family that is Blakedown ensures that all members of the school community feel safe, valued and cared for.
We appreciate and value the uniqueness of each individual and nurture these personal and individual gifts.
Our special Christian identity is demonstrated in the values we share and in the relationships that all members of the school community have with one another.
We are inclusive and welcome others regardless of differences; all individuals are respected, supported and nurtured.
We give to others the tolerance, understanding and forgiveness that we would want for ourselves.
We recently received an 'Outstanding' during our SIAMS Inspection which looks at the whole schools ethos, attitude and support offered to the pupils at the school. For more information about this wonderful achievement please read the SIAMS Report.
Promoting British Values at Blakedown CE Primary School
The DfE have reinforced the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy and these were reiterated in November 2014. At Blakedown CE Primary we take a holistic approach to each aspect and they are reinforced in a number of ways:
The school vision, aims and values are clear about the fact that we value each individual for who they are, that we identify and develop individual skills and interests and help our children to identify their role in the school team and the wider community.
We provide a curriculum which is driven by pupil voice, and engages children in reflecting on their next steps of learning and in discussing and challenging a range of concepts and ideas.
We have active Worship and School Councils which meet to discuss issues raised in Class Council meetings. Each council has a small budget to use and grow to effect change within the school. Every child has an opportunity to share a manifesto, vote and elect the best candidate to represent them on School Council.
Focused work engages children in considering what it means to be British and that being British is about living alongside others in a multi-cultural community; engendering understanding of the viewpoints and practices, backgrounds and contributions everyone makes to the country.
Children have an annual questionnaire where they are able to put forward their views about the school.
Opportunities are present to develop cultural and social understanding through school assemblies; displays - My Space; specific religious festivals; a shared understanding of what is politeness and good behavior; links to learning behaviours used each day; the use of playground buddies.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced at Blakedown CE Primary School. The school operates on three rights - that all people in school have the right to: Learn, Respect and Safety and children are taught these as soon as they enter school. The children are taught the value and reasons behind rules and 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 and Fire Service help to reinforce the importance of Law.
At Blakedown CE Primary Schol, children 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 our pupils to make informed choices, through a safe environment and an empowering education. The children are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through E-Safety and PSHCE work. Whether it be through choice of challenge, direction of learning, how they record their work and participation in a variety of activities and clubs, children are given the freedom to make choices. Blakedown CE Primary also has a robust anti-bullying culture, behaviour and E-safety policies in place.
Mutual Respect and Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values and is embedded within the School Rights. Our Worship values include Respect and children have been part of discussions and assemblies related to what this means and how it is shown. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect.
Blakedown CE Primary School provides opportunities for children to visit places of significant cultural interest, places of worship and we actively encourage visitors from a range of communities and organisations into school. Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in R.E. and PSHCE. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. Each year, the school supports a range of charities that the children can identify with. The school plans fundraising and awareness raising activities to support these charities.