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Embedding British Values at Horfield

'Keeping our children safe and ensuring schools prepare them for life in modern Britain could not be more important.' Department for Education (2014)

The government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy. These are the values of

  • Democracy
  • The rule of law
  • Individual liberty
  • Mutual respect
  • Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

At Horfield School, we actively promote these values in all aspects of our school life. Alongside these, we focus on our school’s Christian values which flow from our vision and are the habits and practices we seek to embody in all adults and children at this school: generosity, compassion, forgiveness, respect, perseverance and courage.


Each year, the children agree their class rules and the rights and responsibilities associated with these. Class Charters linked to our whole school metaphor are then drawn up and displayed in all classrooms.

We teach and develop children’s understanding of democratic experiences so that these are accessible to everyone. As a Church school, we also explore specific teaching and beliefs about democracy through the Christian faith, both within the daily life of the school, in Collective Worship and throughout the curriculum. PHSE and RE lessons in particular, reinforce learning about democracy. Year 4 explore the beginnings of democracy when they study their History Topic about the Ancient Greeks.

We have an active School Council which meets frequently with our Deputy Head to discuss current school issues. Every child on the School Council is voted in by their class.

Children also vote for Year 6 Sports Captains in the Summer Term to represent their respective Colour Team Houses.

We are able to see the impact of learning about Democracy in the way that our children:

  • show that they respect and understand each other’s thoughts and opinions;
  • respect the outcome of a democratic process as a results of their own first-hand experience;
  • learn how to manage their emotions if they do not get elected and also how to respect and support those who are successful
  • are able to make cross-curricular links e.g. with current affairs;
  • show that they understand their responsibilities as a member of the school community and the wider world by developing as good citizens.

The Rule of Law

The importance of the rule of law is consistently reinforced at Horfield School so that the children are aware of the way in which laws protect us and influence our behaviour.

As soon as they join our school pupils are taught about our school rules. They are taught about reasons behind rules, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service help our staff to reinforce this message. Children therefore learn about fairness and about their individual and collective rights and responsibilities.

We are able to see the impact of learning about The Rule of Law in the way that our children:

  • are able to make the right choices and follow our school rules;
  • understand their responsibilities and the consequences of their behaviour;
  • are able to learn at their best and take on risks and challenges in a safe environment that enables them to thrive.

Individual Liberty

Our pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are safe and supportive environment. As a school, we provide boundaries so that our children are able to make informed choices in a safe environment. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our Online Safety and PSHE lessons.

We are able to see the impact of learning about Individual Liberty in the way that our children:

  • feel a sense of belonging and strive to make their own choices;
  • recognise that their views and opinions are valued and the way in which they are encouraged to be active citizens within the school community and beyond;
  • confidently develop strategies and vocabulary to enable them to express their ideas;
  • take risks and challenges within a safe environment;
  • are self-motivated and strive to do and be their very best at all times;
  • know that their personal achievements and attitudes are valued by all; especially by their peers (developing empathy and pride);
  • develop increasing independence;
  • develop increasing understanding of the wider community, including global citizenship and differences within countries about the concept of individual liberty.

Mutual Respect

Mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours affect their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect.

We are able to see the impact of learning about Mutual Respect in the way that our children:

  • respect and value each other’s achievements;
  • demonstrate tolerance and respect for others;
  • respect differences and diversity;
  • take pride in what they do and achieve;
  • are able to work together and feel part of a community;
  • show empathy.

Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs

Horfield Primary is a Church of England primary school, however we also actively promote diversity through our celebrations of different faiths and cultures. Religious Education lessons and PSHE lessons reinforce messages of tolerance and respect for others. Members of different faiths and religions are encouraged to share their own beliefs to enhance learning within classes and the school. The children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths.

We are able to see the impact of learning about tolerance of different faiths in the way that our children:

  • understand the importance of reporting and kind of discriminatory behaviour;
  • are able to discuss issues from different viewpoints and show empathy with one another;
  • are appreciative of other cultures and language;
  • show that they feel safe to question in a respectful environment.