Back in 2019, the whole school staff, school governors, children and a parent panel worked on developing a brand new Christian vision statement for our school. This took a huge amount of time and work to write something that we felt really reflected what we wanted to achieve at Collingham. As a Church of England school, the vision statement sets the direction of the school and articulates our promotion of strong Christian values. It is aspirational; it aims to motivate and inspire all members of the school community; and it provides the all-encompassing structure for our RESPECT Code.
The new vision statement is based on the long-standing school motto of “We are family; All are welcome; You are loved”. It is 50 words long; it is split in to three sections to represent each element of the school motto; and it also has clear biblical literature embedded in to it. It has been structured to lead with God's love; then what we create; what we offer; and then what we do for each child. Finally, we ended with the 'result' in terms of how our children leave this school.
The vision statement underpins everything we do at Collingham School: through the RESPECT code; our curriculum; and all of our policies. It helps to create an environment that prepares our children to be independent, confident, global citizens and it promotes the well-being of the whole child and ensures intellectual, emotional, physical and spiritual growth. Our aim was for it to perfectly reflect our school community as we try to recover from the pandemic and to build even further - in the coming years - on what we have achieved already.
With the vision statement as our umbrella over school, we deliver this through 12 Christian values in our RESPECT Code. These values are the standards that a follower of Jesus Christ holds as important. These values are consistent from generation to generation, since their foundation is from God's Word in the Bible, but they are also values that are consistent with other faiths too. These values are the language we use in school to positively manage behaviour and attitudes to learning. We promote them every day to help each and every child become respectful young people and to become the best version of themselves that they can be.
Each week in collective worship, the children focus on one letter of the RESPECT Code in turn - starting with R for Resilience and followed with E, S, P, E, C and T - before then returning to the start again. This cycle continues throughout the academic year.
The children learn about how their behaviour and attitudes towards learning can be influenced by each letter of the RESPECT Code and they are challenged to go out and put this in to action for themselves - both inside and outside of school.
The school ethos - including the school RESPECT code, RE and Collective Worship and the wider curriculum - promotes the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance for those with different faiths and beliefs; and encourages students to respect other people, with particular regard to the protected characteristics set out in the Equality Act 2010. We strive for this ethos to be reflected and implemented effectively in all aspects of school policy and practice.
From 1st July 2015 the Prevent duty became law. This is a duty on all schools and registered early years providers to have due regard to preventing people being drawn into terrorism. British Values are a set of four values introduced to keep children safe and promote their welfare; specifically to counter extremism. By protecting children in our care, we must be alert to any issues for concern in the child’s life at home or elsewhere. This includes awareness of the expression of extremist views. The promotion of British values are firmly embedded in the life of our school. In addition to this, The Counter Terrorism and Security Act also places a duty on Schools “to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism” (The Prevent duty).
What are British values?
What is the Prevent duty?
From 1st July 2015, all schools and childcare providers must have due regard to the need to prevent people being drawn into terrorism. The government has defined extremism in the Prevent strategy as: “vocal or active opposition to fundamental British Values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs."
Schools, under the Prevent duty, will be expected to demonstrate activity in the following areas:
What does this mean in practice?
Democracy: making decisions together, for example giving opportunities to develop enquiring minds in an atmosphere where questions are valued.
Rule of law: understanding rules matter as cited in Personal Social and Emotional development for example collaborating with children to create rules and codes of behaviour.
Individual liberty: freedom for all, for example reflecting on their differences and understanding we are free to have different opinions.
Mutual respect and tolerance: treat others as you want to be treated, for example sharing and respecting other’s opinions.