British Values Statement
At the Federation of Westminster Special Schools we provide opportunities for pupils to explore their own culture and have a clear understanding and appreciation of a wide range of the cultural influences that have shaped modern Britain. We feel it is important to recognise the cultural backgrounds of the pupils attending our schools along with those who work here. Our SMSC (Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural) provision clearly outlines how we meet these aspects of learning through national curriculum subjects.
We encourage pupils to be tolerant and respectful of those of differing faiths and beliefs and this is done through provision of a Christian ethos, alongside opportunities to engage in the celebrations of religious and cultural events of other faiths. Key festivals and significant events within the British calendar are recognised e.g. political elections, Remembrance Day, and charitable fundraising such as Red Nose Day, and Children in Need.
We have strong links with our local communities, and with other local schools within Westminster and the Bi-borough provision. All pupils play an active part in visits into the community, taking part in sporting events, music projects and a wide range of curriculum focussed activities.
Black Lives Matter:
College Park absolutely stands against racism and supports the values and ethos of Black Lives Matter. We continue to work towards embodying these values and this ethos.
We unequivocally condemn the brutal killing of George Floyd as yet another example of police violence and brutality.
However, we also recognise that this specific incident is a repetition of many similar occurrences both in the USA and much closer to home in the UK. Empirical evidence identifies the outcomes of blatant and covert racism are exhibited on a daily basis in our criminal justice system, education system, employment environments, the health and welfare systems and within government policy and actions.
To stand against racism means we stand for anti-racism and College Park cannot condemn any individual or organisation without looking in the mirror and critiquing and challenging ourselves.
To stand against racism and for anti-racism we have to be strong enough to challenge institutional racism and continue to look at our own actions and behaviours.
We must repeatedly ask ourselves the following questions:
- What does our senior and governing body representation look like?
- What do our staff demographics look like?
- What and who does our curriculum represent?
- What outcomes do our black students get?
- Who feels like they belong - or don’t belong?
- What is the lived experience of our black staff and students at College Park?
So, what are we doing about all of this?
To truly be anti-racist is to look in that mirror and be able to say that we are:
- Continuing to hold ourselves and our teaching and learning to account… for its content, its relevance to our student body and its lack of providing a space and place for our black students and staff to feel they belong
- Ensuring our staffing reflect our student and staff community
- Building a community of staff and students who feel able to share their experiences of racism and know they will receive support, and believe that racism will be challenged.
We are putting that mirror up and examining our own behaviours. We are doing so in a way that recognises that this is a historical and material struggle, and that learning together through this process is necessary.
However, we are proud to say that we are genuinely working on our internal infrastructure, our practices and our behaviours to ensure that we are an anti-racist school.
We are on a journey which will require a lot of conversations, some of which will be uncomfortable and challenging for ALL people across the school.
But we ask our College Park community to join us on this journey in challenging racism and helping us to hold our institution and ourselves to account.
Acceptance of differing faiths and beliefs
Religious Education is taught across the Federation with a Christian based ethos, supporting regular assemblies, collective worship and class based activities. Visits to a range of places of worship take place and local faith leaders visit the schools to support the pupils understanding of other religions.
The delivery of an integrated curriculum enables us to embed British values alongside an understanding of cultural and religious differences within our project led work and aspects of SMSC are clearly identified within each subject area of the national curriculum
Celebrations of key world religious events take place throughout the year, including Diwali, Chinese New Year, Holi etc.
Our pupils are given responsibilities in the school once they are able to manage independent working. They are encouraged to engage in activities such as taking the register, monitors for jobs within class, reading award results in assembly.
School Council votes on a number of key issues concerning the school over the year and some older pupils support younger ones in the playground at lunchtime and break times.
Pupils are encouraged to make choices in as many different settings as possible, e.g choosing what to make in Food Technology lessons, or how to arrange displays in classrooms
Travel training is supported by staff to ensure safety and promote independence in the community.
Effective communication is given high priority across the schools, ensuring pupils can, wherever possible, express their wishes and feelings effectively.
Schools promote an attitude of equality and fairness through engagement in a wide range of sporting activities, including those closely associated with Britain, such as Cricket and Football. Teams represent the schools in sports competitions across London.
The PSHE curriculum embodies values of mutual respect and understanding of difference in ability, needs and individual characteristics and temperament
Drama and role-play are included within our Creative Arts curriculum and both play an important part in supporting understanding of others' perspectives and understanding. of the world.
Staff from schools around the world visit our schools and recognise the respect we have for our pupils’ achievements.
The Rule of Law
The schools both have rules to enable them to function efficiently. Many class groups develop their own class rules to support the behaviour within their own class.
The Federation has a clear Behaviour Policy and pupils learn the difference between right and wrong wherever possible.
Assemblies cover key national and international events, for example the Olympic games, the World Cup, etc including, where applicable, involvement in debates over some challenging situations, recognising that rules and laws vary in different settings and contexts.
Visits from outside agencies support the delivery and understanding of keeping safe, safety, radicalisation, FGM and other aspects of safeguarding and include sex and relationship education.