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Cotmanhay Junior School

Safe, Happy Learning

British Values

British values are important within our school community. In all that we do, we strive to share, encourage and demonstrate positive values with our children, in order that they understand them and strive to live by them.


We aim to achieve:

  • a welcoming working environment
  • positive behaviours and attitudes
  • high standards of achievement
  • a calm, purposeful ethos and
  • a learning experience that enables children to develop as reflective and responsible learners.


We want to ensure all our pupils know:

  • that citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process
  • that laws protect people and are essential for wellbeing and safety
  • that believing in different faiths is protected by law
  • the importance of identifying and stopping discrimination.


We are committed to the development of positive community links and the prevention of extremism and radicalisation both within our school’s physical boundaries and within our local, national and global environments.


We believe that sharing our values with parents, carers and our community is essential in supporting children through their journey in school and life. We do this through our school website, newsletters, school assemblies and inviting parents and cares into school on a regular basis.




Pupils will be taught, in an age-appropriate way, the advantages and disadvantages of democracy, as well as how democracy works in the UK. Staff ensure that pupils’ views and opinions matter, and that children are given opportunities to talk about their thoughts and feelings. Pupils share their views about our school through:


  • Pupil questionnaires
  • The School Council
  • Pupil voice through subject monitoring by subject leaders


We have an active School Council. All children learn about democracy and the voting process through the election of school councillors at the start of each academic year. We teach pupils how they can influence decision-making through a democratic process. School councillors encourage pupils to become involved and ensure they are listened to in school. We help pupils to express their views, and model how perceived injustice can be peacefully challenged. School Council engage with workshops provided by the Houses of Parliament Education Team, and annually visit British landmarks in London including the Houses of Parliament.


Democracy is specifically taught through our history curriculum. Year 5 children study Ancient Greece where they learn about the foundations of democracy. Year 6 children build on this knowledge and learn about the suffragette movement during their World War history topic.



The rule of law


An important part of British values is the understanding that our society can only work well, and protect all its members, if there are rules which everyone is expected to follow. Rules and laws are expectations for how people should behave. They are based on ideas about what is right and wrong. It is important to have rules to ensure fairness and safety for everyone. Derbyshire Police and Derbyshire Fire and Safety team visit our school annually to speak to the children about laws in society. Year 5 receive weekly visits from Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) as part of their Mini-Police programme. Year 5 children learn about the role of the Police and discuss themes such as cyber crime, litter, knife crime and road safety.  


We ensure that school rules and expectations are clear and fair. Pupils are taught to understand the importance of their own behaviour, the impact that their behaviour has on others, and the consequences of their behaviour, through the implementation and enforcement of the school Behaviour Policy.


Within our PSHE curriculum, we discuss peer pressure and what to do if you feel pressured to break school rules or laws in society. Our PSHE lessons regularly focus on the Rights Respecting School Articles and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.



Individual liberty


A safe and supportive environment is fostered throughout the school; pupils are actively encouraged to make good choices. Through the teaching of PSHE, RSE and online safety, pupils are taught about their rights, personal freedoms and personal autonomy, and are encouraged and advised on how to exercise these safely. We aim to develop pupils’ self-esteem and self-confidence, and model freedom of speech through encouraging pupil participation. We have a strong anti-bullying culture and we challenge stereotypes. Our Anti-Stigma Ambassadors are proactive in promoting pupil wellbeing.


We offer a range of after-school clubs which pupils have the freedom to choose from, based on their interests and skills.


Mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs


We ensure that respect for all individuals, regardless of their protected characteristics and/or backgrounds, is promoted throughout the school. Pupils are taught about the importance of diversity in British society, and learn about different cultures, beliefs and backgrounds throughout the taught and enriched curriculum.


Staff members ensure that they always treat everyone with respect, and will ensure that pupils learn to treat each other and all members of staff with respect in return. This is reinforced through our Behaviour Policy.


The school acknowledges that tolerance is achieved through pupils’ knowledge and understanding of their place in a culturally-diverse society. Throughout the year, assemblies focus on key themes such as bullying, tolerance, diversity and respect. Our R.E curriculum ensures that pupils have a good understanding of a range of religious and non-religious beliefs and customs. Through our art and design curriculum, pupils study a wide-range of diverse artists and learn about different cultures. Through our Jigsaw PSHE topic Celebrating Differences, pupils learn to accept and appreciate people for who they are, empathising with people who are different, and children recognise ways in which they are unique and special.



Challenging views that go against British values


Staff and pupils will challenge any opinions and behaviours that go against British values. We do not tolerate discriminatory and prejudicial behaviour of any kind, and any pupils displaying this behaviour will be disciplined in line with the Behaviour Policy. Referrals regarding pupils that may be at risk of radicalisation will be made in accordance with the school’s Prevent Duty Policy.