Under guidance published by the DfE in November 2014, all schools are required to, ‘actively promote’ the fundamental British Values of:
- The rule of law;
- Individual liberty;
- Mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.
These values were first set out by government in the Prevent strategy in 2011.
The DfE guidance makes clear the following aims which are to:
‘Ensure children become valuable and fully rounded members of society who treat others with respect and tolerance, regardless of background to ensure young people understand the importance of respect and leave school fully prepared for life in modern Britain.’
The knowledge and understanding students are expected to learn include:
- An understanding of how citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process;
- An understanding that the freedom to hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law;
- An acceptance that people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none), should be accepted and tolerated and should not be the cause of prejudicial or discriminatory behaviour;
- An understanding of the importance of identifying and combatting discrimination.
Teaching on British Values must:
- Enable students to develop their self-knowledge, self-esteem and self-confidence;
- Enable students to distinguish right from wrong and to respect the civil and criminal law of England;
- Encourage students to accept responsibility for their behaviour, show initiative, and to understand how they can contribute positively to the lives of those living and working in the locality of the UTC and to society more widely;
- Enable students to acquire a broad general knowledge of and respect for, public institutions and services in England;
- Enable students to acquire an appreciation for and respect for their own and other cultures, thus promoting tolerance and harmony between different cultural traditions;
- Encourage respect for other people;
- Encourage respect for democracy and support for participation in democratic processes, including respect for the basis on which the law is made and applied in England;
- At UTC Bolton it will also encourage respect for other people, paying particular regard to the protected characteristics set out in the Equality Act (2010).
The Ofsted inspection process makes a judgement as to a school’s effectiveness in teaching British Values as part of the ‘Quality and Standards in Education’ judgement. This is reflected in the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils.
- ‘The spiritual development of pupils is shown by:
- An ability to be reflective about their own beliefs, religious or otherwise, that inform their perspective on life and their interest in and respect for different people’s faiths, feelings and values.
- The moral development of pupils is shown by their:
- Ability to recognise the difference between right and wrong and to readily apply this understanding in their own lives, recognise legal boundaries and, in so doing, respect the civil and criminal law of England;
- Understanding of the consequences of their behaviour and actions;
- Interest in investigating and offering reasoned views about moral and ethical issues and ability to understand and appreciate the viewpoints of others on these issues.
- The social development of pupils is shown by their:
- Use of a range of social skills in different contexts, for example working and socialising with other pupils, including those from different religious, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds;
- Willingness to participate in a variety of communities and social settings, including by volunteering, co-operating well with others and being able to resolve conflicts effectively;
- Acceptance and engagement with the fundamental British Values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs; they develop and demonstrate skills and attitudes that will allow them to participate fully in and contribute positively to life in modern Britain.
- The cultural development of pupils is shown by their:
- Understanding and appreciation of the range of different cultures within school and further afield as an essential element of their preparation for life in modern Britain;
- Knowledge of Britain’s democratic parliamentary system and its central role in shaping our history and values, and in continuing to develop Britain;
- Interest in exploring, improving understanding of and showing respect for, different faiths and cultural diversity, as shown by the extent to which they understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity, as shown by their tolerance and attitudes towards different religions, ethnic and socio-economic groups in the local, national and global communities.’
Ofsted will expect to see an ethos and climate which promotes British Values at every level, through SMSC, the curriculum and leadership and management.
Promotion of British Values at UTC Bolton.
Students have a range of varied opportunities to have their voice heard. These include:
- Being a member of the Student Leadership team, including nomination to Student Principal;
- Being a member of the Student Council;
- Contributing to the review of policies, including the UTC Social Media Policy, Anti-Bullying Policy;
- Contributing to recruitment Open Days/Evenings;
- Providing feedback through regular Student Voice questionnaires;
- Being involved in discussions during daily ‘Activate’ sessions;
- Making choices in Enrichment activities;
- Being involved in the recruitment process for staff.
The Rule of Law
The importance of rules and laws, whether they govern a class, the UTC or the country are consistently reinforced throughout the UTC day and year during lessons, the Culture curriculum, ‘Activate’ sessions and assemblies.
Students are taught the values of laws and rules, the reasons behind them and the consequences that apply when these are broken.
Parents/carers are a fundamental part of the UTC’s approach to the ‘rule of law’, as they too know what the consequences will be if their child does not conform with the UTC rules.
Students undertaking external work experience placements do so as ambassadors of the UTC and know they must conform to the rules and laws of employers.
UTC Bolton promotes independent decision making for all of its students. Throughout the day students are encouraged to make appropriate and safe choices within a safe and secure environment. Students are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights, for example in relation to social media, their behaviour and relation to other students and in the Culture curriculum.
Through involvement in a variety of extra-curricular and community activities and the Enrichment curriculum students are provided with opportunities to participate in fund-raising activities.
Students are also encouraged to develop their leadership skills through membership of the Student Leadership team or Student Council.
Students develop their self-management and self-organisational skills in the process of securing an external work experience placement, liaising with the individual company and negotiating a suitable placement which meets their needs.
An ethos of mutual respect permeates all aspects of UTC Bolton and includes mutual respect between students and with staff. It is evidenced in lessons, during activities in the Enrichment curriculum, during transitions between lessons and during breaks and lunch periods.
Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs is promoted across all interactions with students, including actively in the Culture curriculum with specific sessions dedicated to the topic, for example, prejudiced-based bullying such as homophobia. It is also promoted through a programme of assemblies and topic-based discussions during daily ‘Activate’ sessions. More generally tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs is promoted during daily interactions of staff with students and students with students. A multi-faith Reflection room is available for students to use during the College day.
The Prevent Strategy
UTC Bolton has adopted a College-wide Prevent strategy to:
- Raise awareness;
- Provide information to students, parents/carers and families of vulnerable students;
- Enable students to make a positive contribution to the debate in order to develop their resilience;
- Protect the well-being of students and manage risks on their behalf.
There are 5 elements to the College-wide approach:
- Understanding how to challenge the extremism narratives that can lead to harm;
- Understanding how to prevent harm;
- Understanding how to support vulnerable students and the friends and families of vulnerable students;
- Increasing the resilience of students and their communities;
- Allowing grievances to be aired.
The elements have synergy with the UTC Safeguarding strategy of the College and the wider responsibility all staff have for the safety and well-being of all students.
The UTC takes the view that failure to challenge extremist views would be failure to protect students.
All staff, including temporary staff and trainee teachers are required to undertake Level 1 Safeguarding training, including Prevent, before they can work with students.
Prevent training (WRAP) is delivered at least annually by the Director of Inclusion and Student Services who is a nationally accredited ‘train the trainer’ for the course. In addition, he is the Designated Safeguarding Lead for the UTC and sits on the Prevent Steering Group for Bolton.
Members of the Interim Management Committee are also required to undertake the Level 1 Safeguarding course, including Prevent.