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Orchard Park High School

British Values

How is Orchard Park High School promoting British values?


Students get to vote and discuss school issues with their peers in the following: School Council, year councils, mock elections, prefect meetings, tutor time, PSHE and citizenship lessons.

Individual liberty

Students actively engage in individual liberty through: freedom of expression in creative writing, performances in drama, participating in talent shows, music and sport. All students are encouraged to make choices in a safe environment, both individually and collectively. All students are encouraged to use critical judgement, to understand their personal capacity and power to influence.

Mutual respect

All students understand the importance of developing tolerance and respect. We promote respect through: daily reflections, assemblies, themes of the week and our broad and balanced curriculum, sustaining positive links within our local community. The teaching of RE, PSHE and citizenship encourages students to become active citizens, embracing and celebrating all religions, faiths and beliefs and creating a room for reflection and prayer. Students support each other in the frequent public performances given internally and externally in the community. Students also have the opportunity to engage in The Edge Project, charity initiatives and local community work.

Rule of law

Students understand rule of law by observing the school rules. Students have confidence that school rules will be applied consistently and fairly and that there are clear sanctions if rules are breached. Discussion of British justice takes place, including how laws are made and where the legitimacy of a law comes from. Discussions of legitimate and illegitimate forms of protest are encouraged during PSHE and citizenship lessons.

Equality Club

Our OPHS Equality Club is a diverse, non-biased group of students committed to challenging social justice issues. The club meets weekly on Tuesday lunch times and regularly lead or support assemblies with a focus on inclusion for all and the language that we use as a school community. The group regularly provides challenge to the school's leadership team in relation to equal opportunities and strives to make Orchard Park High as inclusive as possible so that all students feel valued and celebrated for their individual identity.

British values and our curriculum

At Orchard Park we uphold British values. We are aware of our duty to ensure all children are educated on the following taken from ‘Guidance on promoting British values’, Department for Education, November 2014. 

Examples of the understanding and knowledge pupils 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.

Examples of actions schools can take to promote British values are to:

  • include in suitable parts of the curriculum - as appropriate for the age of students – material on the strengths, advantages and disadvantages of democracy, and how democracy and the law works in Britain, in contrast to other forms of government in other countries,

  • ensure all students within the school have a voice that is listened to, and demonstrate how democracy works by actively promoting democratic processes such as a school council whose members are voted for by the students,

  • use opportunities such as general or local elections to hold mock elections to promote fundamental British values and provide students with the opportunity to learn how to argue and defend points of view,

  • consider the role of extra-curricular activity, including any run directly by students, in promoting fundamental British values.

As stated in the DfE’s statutory guidance, teaching on these matters should be integrated appropriately into the curriculum, rather than addressed separately or in one-off lessons. For this reason, we address the issues through our assembly programme, PSHE and within our timetabled lessons such as history, RE, English and wherever else relevant. Our curriculum maps can be found here.