Teaching British Values in the Sixth Form
The government set out their definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy. These were reinforced in September 2014. The new regulations will sit alongside the requirements of the Equalities Act, which also applies to all schools/academies in the UK.
The Department for Education’s five-part definition of British values includes:
The rule of law
Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
At The Harefield Academy Sixth Form, students will encounter these principles throughout everyday Academy life. The academic and pastoral curriculum is mapped in detail across the Sixth Form year. This is teaching students British Values. To be able to work together as a team, to learn the history of Britain, to see Britain in its true multicultural form, gives us a common identity. Many students have visited London, to see the Capital and the various experiences within it. Students have been on trips to enhance their knowledge of the world around them.
It also covers a large part of our SMSC within The Academy. The Sixth Form team have been tasked with developing the Sixth Form students’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development. The Sixth Form experience has helped to develop students’ social skills and also addressed many moral issues. Our assemblies and Tutor sessions have also enhanced our cultural understanding of the country we live in. As part of our PSHE programme, students must learn how to be resilient and cope in unfamiliar circumstances.
Our goal is to make each THA Sixth Former a well-rounded, employable individual who have experienced different circumstances so that they can be adaptable. We work hard helping the Sixth Formers to build positive relations with staff both inside and outside of the classroom.
Here are some examples of how we promote these values in our Sixth Form community:
Our “Sixth Form Student Executive” is elected by both staff and students throughout the year, those with the largest number of votes are asked to run for the Head Boy and Head Girl roles. Once elected, the Executive work with The Academy’s Student Voice and staff in making The Academy a better place to learn.
We also encourage the Sixth Formers to take an interest in giving their own opinions on our work in the Sixth Form and beyond, by encouraging them to take part in student questionnaires/surveys/interviews throughout the year. We know that the active participation of our Sixth Formers will sow the seeds for a more sophisticated understanding of democracy in the future; this is also encouraged by our focus on ‘young people issues’ and British democracy in our assemblies in the hope that we can encourage more of our students to register to vote and have opinions on the subjects that matter to them.
Assembly/Tutor Time focus: A Short History of British Politics and Why Vote? The London Mayoral Elections etc.
Other: Sixth Form Vote, Head Boy and Head Girl Selection Process, Student Executive, Student Vote etc.
The Rule of Law
Our students will encounter rules and laws throughout their entire lives. We want our students to understand that whether these laws govern the class, The Academy, the neighbourhood or the country, they are set for good reasons and must be adhered to.
This understanding of the importance of rules will be consistently reinforced through assemblies and our curriculum. Throughout the year we welcome visits from members of the wider community including police, campaigners, charity workers etc. We believe that clear explanations and contextualising learning emphasise the importance of the rule of law for our students.
Assembly/Tutor Time focus: E-Safety, The Rule of Law, Human Trafficking, FGM, etc.
We invest a great deal of time in creating a positive culture in our Academy, so that students are in a safe environment where choice and freedom are encouraged. Through our assemblies, we educate Sixth Formers on their rights and personal freedoms as well as supporting them in recognising how to exercise these freedoms safely. At The Harefield Academy we believe that valuing choice and freedom in daily Academy life will foster values of individual liberty as the students embark upon their adult lives.
Assembly/Tutor Time focus: Sixth Form Vote, Head Boy and Head Girl Selection Process, Student Executive, Student Vote, Why Vote? Sixth Form surveys. Volunteering, Why Go to University? Gap Years? FGM, Blood and Organ Donation etc.
Mutual respect is at the core of our Academy life. Students learn to treat each other and staff with respect. This is evident when walking around The Academy. We actively promote “respect” and this is seen throughout the various relationships between students and staff.
Assembly/Tutor Time focus: FGM, Tolerance and Respect, Blood and Organ Donation, Human Trafficking, Black History Month, etc.
Events: Annual Multi-faith event, OAP Christmas Party, peer mentoring, etc.
Tolerance of Those with Different Faiths and Beliefs
Through both our curriculum and the routines of our daily Academy life we strive to demonstrate tolerance, helping students to become knowledgeable and understanding citizens who can build a better society for the future.
Assembly/Tutor Time focus: FGM, Tolerance and Respect, Blood and Organ Donation, Volunteering etc.
Other: Lessons from Auschwitz trip, Holocaust Memorial Day trip, Remembrance and ANZAC tributes.