Headlam Street, Byker, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE6 2JX | Tel: 0191 265 9881
At St Lawrence’s we are always aware of our values- what makes us a unique and special school. Of course we aim to be excellent at English, Maths and all of the other subjects but what is more important is growing up to be an excellent person. In line with our Catholic Ethos, we have identified a number of attributes from the Gospel that make us special:
OUR GOSPEL VALUES
- Love: A Christ like love that respects the talents of each person in our school
- Hope: A hope that helps us see a life beyond our present ones
- Faith: Helps us to do God’s work in the world
- Truth: We should show God’s truth in all that we do
- Joy: Show that we are healthy and happy and live our lives to the full
- Prayer: Through prayer we stay close to God
- Mission: Our mission is to live how Christ lived.
- Justice: We live a life that works against injustice and wrong
- Peace: We know that if we love one another we can bring peace to the world around us
- Mercy: We show forgiveness to others
- Community: We believe our community unites us to do the work of Jesus
HOW WE TEACH OUR VALUES
Each term a class will look at one of the values that we have identified and will explore it. We then meet in assembly as a whole school and share what we have found out. For example, recently, Year 6 learned about mission and community. They went to Byker Lodge (a home for the elderly) and played bingo with the residents. They also made cookies and spent the afternoon there. Year 1 learned about the importance of telling the truth through folk tales. They then learned a song to remember what they had learned.
In addition to this we have four weekly assemblies (two whole school and two Key Stage) where we explore these values further. We also look at stories with specific morals and other values such as fairness, inclusion, accepting difference and tolerance. We have a school council that was elected democratically. We invited Cllr Nick Kemp in to talk about democracy and his role as a councillor. The council meet every fortnight to address decisions where a pupil voice is relevant. So far they have chosen new play equipment to be shared in the Key Stage 1 and 2 yards on a small given budget. Next, they will look at a project for a proposed outdoor classroom.
PROMOTING BRITISH VALUES AT ST. LAWRENCE’S
The DfE have recently reinforced the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy, and these values have been reiterated this year (2014).
At St Lawrence’s RC Primary School we value the diverse ethnic backgrounds of all pupils and families and undertake a variety of events and lessons to celebrate these as a whole community. We have found this approach to be enriching for all parties as it teaches tolerance and respect for the differences in our community and the wider world.
At St Lawrence’s these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Democracy is ubiquitous within the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our School Council (see CLLR Kemp speaking to our pupils) and pupil questionnaire both within school and our locality. The elections of school councilors are based solely on pupil votes. Our school behaviour policy involves rewards, which the pupils decide upon.
Rule of Law:
The importance of Laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school collective worship. 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. Visits from authorities such as the Police, Fire Service (see photo) etc. are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safely, through provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety (see photo) and PSHE lessons. Whether it be through choice of challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra- curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Part of our school ethos and behaviour policy has revolved around Core Values such as ‘Respect’, and pupils have been part of discussions and assemblies related to what this means and how it is shown. All members of the school community treat each other with respect. Displays around the school promote respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our behaviour policy.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in RE and PSHE.