Ethos and British Values
”United through Jesus in faith, love and learning.”
By this we encompass :
an understanding of the role of democracy; the importance of rule of law; the respect of individual liberty ; the showing of mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.
At St Paul's we understand that we are responsible for the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of our pupils and for promoting fundamental British values.
- Our Faith in God is at the centre of all we do.
- We attend Mass regularly, have class Masses at the Church weekly and encourage families to attend a family Mass once a month. All pupils and their families are invited to attend Mass, with our parish priest welcoming those of other faiths to receive a blessing within our Mass and to join in our celebrations.
- We pray regularly together.
- We teach the children RE using the ‘God Matters’ syllabus written by the Catholic Diocese of Portsmouth. This encompasses the Catholic faith and teaching the children about the different faiths and beliefs of others. Respect is shown to every member of our community.
- Jesus teaches us to love one another – this includes our friends, our families and all our neighbours, regardless of their faith or lifestyle.
- We listen to and respect each other.
- We encourage our children to develop their self-esteem, self-confidence and self-knowledge always - all children take part in annual performances, Masses, assemblies
- We have introduced "Mini-Vinnies" – sharing love and care in our community through our actions in finding ways to help our local communities and reaching out to society.
- We regularly ask pupils and their families to contribute items for delivery to local homeless/drop-in centres and are always touched by the keen and generous response from our children. In doing so, staff and pupils engage in discussion about the needs of others and children learn the importance of helping others.
- Pupils happily and enthusiastically engage in charity events, such as a recent Toy Sale to raise money for a local charity, showing that they want to positively contribute and do what we can to help others less fortunate than ourselves.
- We encourage our pupils to find ways to say "thank you" to those who support the school throughout the year or to offer support when people are unwell - we often ask the children to work together to write cards to classmates, staff or others in the community who need support or a quiet word of thanks. In Year 6, the pupils are asked to organise a tea party for volunteers who give their time freely and willingly to support our school - this is a well-attended and much-loved event where we celebrate together and remember how those around us offer us love and support.
- We develop children’s understanding and respect for other beliefs and beliefs through our RE Lessons and other lessons/topics where children can develop a respect for other cultures.
- International day - we celebrate and enjoy learning about the differences in countries and cultures of families in our own communities.
- The children learn about different cultures within the British Isles.
- The children have had the opportunity to talk about democracy in this country and how Parliament was elected during the General election.
- To further develop their understanding of democracy, each year the children have the opportunity to apply to be a School Councillor for their class. They discuss the characteristics important to be a class representative, make speeches and then vote in secret using a ballot box. The School Council meets regularly to discuss issues raised by different classes. It is important to us that our pupils have a ‘voice’.
- Another example of pupil 'voice' is the Peer Mediators that have volunteered and been trained to resolve any minor conflicts between their peers in the playground. This is very successful and encourages the children to learn diplomacy and conflict resolution, strengthening their understanding of the need to work together respectfully to resolve disagreements.
- Rules and Laws - at the start of each year every class discusses the need for a set of rules that will enable them to learn in a safe environment. These are displayed and referred to regularly when there is a need.
- The importance of School rules and the Behaviour Policy are referred to and reinforced by School staff. Consequences are made clear for when rules are broken and children are asked to reflect on "right" and "wrong" behaviour. The importance of laws (whether they be those that govern the class, the School, or the country) are reinforced at all times. Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. We have regular visits from authorities such as the police and fire service to help emphasize this message.
- Children are taught that they have individual liberty. They are able to make choices, express their views and beliefs within the safe boundaries of the school. Children have choices on learning challenges or activities, in respect of clubs and activities at playtime and after school and are encouraged to use this freedom of choice.
- We have regular visits from local police to talk about their role and the law of the land.