This policy applies to all pupils in the Junior School, including the EYFS.
At Sheffield Girls' we aim to develop pupils’ personal qualities in a spiritual, moral, social and cultural sense through all aspects of school life.
We place particular emphasis on helping pupils
- Develop their self-knowledge, self-esteem, self-confidence and emotional maturity
- Encourage pupils to have the self-confidence and resilience to undertake difficult tasks
- Develop an appreciation of religious, philosophical and non-materialistic aspects of life in a way that promotes harmony and tolerance
- Develop a sense of right and wrong and a respect for good conduct, moral and ethical values
- To accept responsibility for their behaviour
- To act responsibly and be positive role models for younger pupils
- To contribute to society through helping in the community or fundraising
- Understand and respect their own and other faiths and cultures
- Develop a political and economic awareness.
Spiritual development is the development of the non-material element of a human being. It is about the development of a sense of identity, self-worth, personal insight, meaning and purpose. It is about the development of a pupil’s personality.
The school aims to:
- Provide an environment where pupils can grow and flourish, respect others and be respected.
- Help pupils develop into self-assured, confident, happy, positive young people.
Pupils should then:
- Have respect for themselves and for others
- Have an awareness of their own and others’ beliefs, feelings, and values;
- Develop a set of values, principles and beliefs, which may or may not be religious, which inform their perspective on life and their patterns of behaviour
- Be able to articulate their feelings and justify them through discussion, debate, and presentations to others
- Be able to discuss topics such as discrimination, injustice and bullying
- Acquire the skills to be self-reliant and work both independently and in a team
- Be willing to take on responsibility for their own actions
- Develop an increasing ability to reflect, and to learn from this.
Moral development enables pupils to build a framework of moral values, which regulates their personal behaviour. It is also about the development of pupils’ understanding of society’s shared and agreed values. It is about understanding that there are issues where there is disagreement and it is also about understanding that society’s values change. Moral development is about gaining an understanding of the range of views and the reasons for the range. It is also about developing and opinion about the different views.
The school aims to:
- Enable pupils to distinguish right from wrong
- Help pupils develop an understanding of British Values, society’s agreed values and the law of the land.
Pupils should then:
- Have the ability to distinguish right from wrong
- Be able to think through the consequences of their own and others’ actions
- Be able to understand the impact that their own actions can have on others
- Have respect for others
- Have a willingness and the confidence to express their views on ethical issues and personal values
- Ensure that there are no opportunities for political indoctrination in the curriculum and extra-curricular provision
- Play a part in developing the school’s code of behaviour
Social development is about young people working effectively with each other and participating successfully in the community as a whole. It is about the development of the skills and personal qualities necessary for living and working together in harmony and making a positive contribution to the school community and wider society. It is also about functioning effectively in a multi-racial, multi-cultural society and developing into a tolerant and helpful human being. It also involves the development of the inter-personal skills necessary for successful relationships.
The school aims to:
- Help pupils understand how to be responsible for their own behaviour
- Help pupils show initiative
- Encourage pupils to respect the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance
- Create a strong school community where all pupils are valued and can make an important contribution
- Make links with the wider community
- Ensure that Pupil Voice is valued and that opportunities are given for all girls to contribute
Pupils should then:
- Show respect for people, living things, property and the environment
- Work effectively and respectfully with other pupils
- Share their own views and opinions with others in a positive way
- Willingly and happily participate in activities
- Be aware of the strengths of the democratic process and respect and take an active part in those democratic opportunities available to them
- Behave in an appropriate and sensitive way
- Develop the ability to work and live alongside those from different cultures and beliefs and be able to identify and combat discrimination
- Reflect on their own contribution to society
- Have an understanding of British Values and political and ethical issues
- Be aware that rules and laws exist to protect individuals
Cultural development involves helping pupils to develop an understanding of their own culture and other cultures both in their own community and more widely throughout the world. It is about understanding and feeling comfortable in a variety of cultures and being able to operate in the emerging world culture of shared experiences provided by television, art, theatre, travel and the internet. Pupils should value cultural diversity and prevent racism.
The school aims to:
- Help pupils interact with pupils from other cultures in a positive way
- Provide opportunities for visits to and visitors from a range of places of worship and local organisations, ensuring that the content of their contributions is agreed beforehand and that girls are offered a balanced presentation of opposing views.
Pupils should then:
- Be able to appreciate cultural diversity
- Understand and respect other people’s values and beliefs
- Be tolerant of people with different cultural, religious, and non-religious beliefs and be able to interact with them.
Promoting British Values at Sheffield Girls' Infant and Junior School
The DfE have recently 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 values have been reiterated this year (2014).
At Sheffield Girls' Infant and Junior School we uphold and teach the girls about British Values which are defined as:
- rule of law
- individual liberty
- mutual respect
- tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
In particular they can be observed through our promotion of Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural understanding and our focus on the core values of school. These include such values as Kindness, Courage, Respect, Tolerance, Loyalty, Co-operation, Creativtiy, Integrity, Resilience and Positivity.
These values are taught and explored explicitly through our Enrichment programme which integrates aspects of PSHE and Citizenship, with reflective and critical thinking as well as life skills such as being analytical, taking leadership roles and working well as part of teams. Many of these values are also addressed as part of the Religious Education programme. We also teach British Values through planning and delivering a broad and balanced curriculum – with units of our Creative Curriculum focused on exploring major world religions as well as social justice issues which highlight the diversity of the world’s cultures.
The school takes opportunities to actively promote British Values through collective worship and whole school systems and structures such as electing and running a successful Junior School Student Council, which has several sub-committees enabling many of the girls to have a voice in their school. We also actively promote British values through ensuring that our curriculum planning and delivery includes real opportunities for exploring these values, in the classroom by inviting guests into the school to speak to the girls on various topics.
At Sheffield Girls' Infant and Junior School these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is an important value at our school. The girls have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our Junior School Student Council. The elections of members to the council are based on pupil votes. In addition, there are two other committees with representatives from all of the classes which report to the Student Council – Jewel Committee and Eco-Group. As mentioned, Sheffield Girls' Infant and Junior School’s ethos is based a set of whole school values which give rise to themes used constantly throughout the year in the promotion of SMSC and British Values. For example, the Word of the Week is drawn from these values, and is presented in the Monday whole school assembly through story, reflection and prayer; it then provides a focus for class discussion as well as reward of individual children who exemplify the value and culminates in providing the theme for the end-of-week House Meeting. Democracy has been used as a Word of the Week, and speakers have visited the school to talk to the girls on this topic. In addition, we have run student surveys where we ask the girls’ opinions on various aspects of the school day from school lunch to afterschool activities.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws and rules, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days. Our system for behaviour is aligned to an agreed set of school rules – which are displayed in each classroom. If the girls are given verbal warnings this is always set against the agreed school behaviour code as well as reflecting on the values – especially tangential words such as Friendship, Cheerfulness and Politeness. The girls are asked to identify which aspect of the code they have broken to ensure that this connection is made and understood. Through the Enrichment programme – Rights and Responsibilities – the girls are taught the value and reasons behind laws, the responsibilities that living in a democracy and having laws involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from speakers with a law or legal background support this aspect. Linking with authorities such as the police and fire service are part of our calendar and help reinforce this message.
To encourage and promote good behaviour, attitude and work, we have devised a reward system which is consistently followed throughout the school. We are committed to praising the girls’ efforts. We endeavour to praise the children informally, individually, during group work, in front of the whole class and the whole school. Children are rewarded not only for achievement in curriculum areas, but for behaviour. House points in the form of stars are given in recognition for these achievements, and in exceptional cases there are also Gold Stars which generate a Head of Infant and Junior certificate which is presented in a whole school assembly, once a term.
Our girls are actively encouraged to make choices at our school, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we provide boundaries for our children to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and planned curriculum. The girls are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our e-Safety teaching. Aspects of the Creative Curriculum focus on the girls debating and presenting their views and opinions, thus allowing them the liberty of free expression as well as striving to develop self-knowledge, self-esteem and self-confidence. Girls are given the freedom to make choices in a variety of ways, including signing up for extra-curricular clubs, selecting their playtime activities, auditioning for school play roles and choirs and putting themselves forward for election to councils and committees.
Our living ethos heighten the girls’ awareness for mutual respect. Tolerance, Integrity, Respect and Co-operation all go towards instilling the values of treating each other in a fair, just manner. These values – along with all others - are articulated in School Assemblies, House Meetings, and Council Meetings as well as throughout the planned curriculum. In addition, there is an Equality Policy and Equality Action Plan which is regularly reviewed by the SMT, and shared will all staff, which promotes Equality throughout the school and in all aspects of school life. There is a regular Equality agenda item on the School Council meeting agenda which allows the girls an opportunity to voice any issues they perceive contrary to providing equality and mutual respect.
Tolerance of Those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Sheffield Girls’ Infant and Junior School has a rich and varied diversity in its student and parent body and staff. There are opportunities for families of different faith and beliefs to share their experiences with the whole school community, through assembly as well as class talks and activities. Furthermore, the Creative Curriculum and Enrichment programme seeks to enhance the girls’ understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society through the topics by exploring diversity in our local community as well as globally. Social justice issues and global awareness, are approached through the curriculum (including RE) and Enrichment tasks, and require the girls to explore and reflect on prejudices, prejudice-based bullying and injustice both of the human and environmental sorts. In addition, the Creative Curriculum provides the opportunity through the chosen topics to learn about life, tradition, religion and culture in countries around the world. There are focus weeks for all of the major world religions which allow the girls to explore and learn about these customs, practises and celebrations. The MFL programme focuses not only at developing the literacy and linguistic skills of the girls in French, Spanish and German, but also explores the cultures and countries which speak these languages.