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Our Ethos

In 2018/19 St Helen’s Governors set the following five-year vision for our school:

To secure a learning environment for the young people of our community recognised for delivering high quality all round education that challenges and inspires in a safe and caring environment.

St Helens Primary School has a very strong ethos. You feel it as soon as you enter the building. It influences everything we do.
It is about developing the whole child through our core values of Citizenship, Creativity, Spirituality, Independence. It is about preparing each and every child for a lifetime of learning in a safe and nurturing family atmosphere, with equal opportunities for all and a commitment to high standards.

Our aims

  • to create a family atmosphere where every child and parent feels happy and welcomed
  • to combine this happy environment with high expectations of work and behaviour
  • to ensure every child fulfils his or her potential and that we celebrate the achievements of all children
  • to equip every child with the skills needed for a lifetime of learning, encouraging independence and self-motivation
  • to ensure every child is stimulated and challenged but also has fun!
  • to develop in every child high self esteem and self confidence
  • to help children become well-rounded members of society by aiding their development intellectually, physically, socially, emotionally, creatively, morally and spiritually
  • to promote equality of opportunity, and teach that tolerance, courtesy, good manners and respect for others are very important qualities
  • to welcome children with Special Education Needs (SEND) and include them in the life of the school
  • to establish strong partnerships with parents, other schools and the wider community, encouraging two-way communication and involvement
  • to encourage good health through healthy eating and involvement in well-mannered, co-operative team games

Our specific objectives and priorities for the current school year are included in our School Development Plan, details of which are on Our Governors page.

 

BRITISH VALUES AT ST HELENS PRIMARY SCHOOL

At St Helens Primary School we aim to promote tolerance and respect for all cultures and faiths through our school vision, values, rules, curriculum and teaching. We take seriously our role in preparing our pupils for life in modern Britain within the school and the wider community. We recognise that Britain is a multi-cultural, multi-faith country and our location in a small rural village means we have to ensure our pupils have access to a wide range of experiences.

The definition of British Values is set out in the government’s ‘Prevent Strategy’ and they are as follows.
• Democracy
• The Rule of law
• Individual Liberty
• Mutual Respect
• Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

Democracy

Democracy can be seen throughout the school as appropriate to the children’s ages. The school council consists of pupils from years 1-6 who are elected by their peers, and they work with staff to make decisions that will benefit their peers and represent their views when meeting with the headteacher. Pupils have been trained as Mini Mediators using Restorative Thinking materials, and older pupils take the role of sports leaders during sporting events. Jenny Mosley’s Golden Rules have been adopted across the school, and in addition each class has a set of rules agreed by pupils with their teacher. Pupil’s opinions are sought through questionnaires written by the school council and suggestion boxes. The importance of democracy is studied through History and Religious Education, and regular assemblies.

The Rule of Law

At St Helens Primary School we emphasise the importance of rules and expectations for behaviour. Pupils are aware of the rewards and sanctions set out in the Behaviour Policy, and a group of pupils are currently producing a pupils’ version of the Anti Bullying Policy. Children have respect for the rules and understand their importance in creating a fair society, where individuals must take responsibility for their actions and accept the consequences when rules are broken. This is reinforced in a positive manner during assemblies. External visitors such as the local PCSO, the fire service, trading standards and harbour staff reinforce the importance of rules in the wider community. As pupils mature they begin to understand that they need to adhere to the rule of law in order to become a good citizen.

Individual Liberty

Pupils are encouraged to make individual choices within a safe and supportive environment. St Helens is much smaller than average so it is important our pupils take part in events involving the wider community including sports fixtures, country dancing, ‘Bikeability’, carnivals and mainland residential trips. They are encouraged to know and understand their rights and personal freedoms within safe boundaries. For this reason they receive regular e-safety sessions and are involved in developing anti-bullying procedures. The ethos of the school encourages creativity, and encourages pupils to try new things, using mistakes as an opportunity for future learning. Pupils have a wide choice of after school clubs to allow them to develop self-esteem and work alongside different members of the school community.

Mutual Respect

Pupils are encouraged to show respect towards adults and each other. A weekly Sharing Assembly with parents and carers promotes positive attitudes valued across the school, and pupils are encouraged to be excellent role models to one another through their behaviour and attitude to work. This is promoted through circle time, PHSE and class assemblies. They are taught to listen to one another and value other people’s opinions. This is extended into the community through the Senior Citizens Christmas Party and marking nationally significant days such as Remembrance Day. Volunteers, parents and members of the community are treated with respect when they come in to run clubs and contribute towards the curriculum.

Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs

St Helens Pupils live in a rural village with relatively little diversity. Consequently the school works hard to extend our pupil’s knowledge and understanding of different faiths and beliefs in order to prepare them for the wider world. The R.E curriculum is based on the Hampshire ‘Living Difference’ model and covers the Jewish, Hindu and Muslim faiths as well as Christianity. Topics such as bullying, disability and respecting difference are covered in PHSE at a level appropriate to the children’s ages, and the resources in the EYFS are selected with diversity in mind. Children learn about different cultural practices through the curriculum during topics such as ‘The Indus Valley’ and ‘Brazil’. The school does not have a religious character, but it has a strong Christian ethos with well-established links to the local church. Visitors from other faiths and cultures are always welcome in assembly.