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Nurture groups and parental engagement Tackling bullying in schools - part one Aggression at work: Managing yourself and others Managing difficult conversations The art of influence: Creating the best outcome Change management and conflict Managing anxiety at work Interpreting data for 2017 performance Evaluation article: Know your strengths Evaluation article: Developing an ethos of high expectation Achieving an ‘Outstanding’ Grade: Focused on Excellence Evaluation article: HR and the successful school: A case study Evaluation article: Leading the way to outstanding learner progress Evaluation article: Attainment and progress: The Rochford Review Evaluation article: How to create a leadership team that drives school improvement Evaluation article: Prioritising the budget for school improvement Evaluation article: Transforming a failing school Evaluation article: Evaluating alternative and specially resourced provision Evaluation article: Taking a school-wide approach to mental health and wellbeing Evaluation article: The latest developments in education - January 2016 Evaluation article: Managing uncertainty Evaluation article: Pupil voice as an evaluation technique Evaluation article: The latest developments in education - September 2016 Evaluation article: Deconstructing Ofsted: Reflection after inspection Evaluation article: MAT expansion: Don’t let school improvement become a casualty Evaluation article: Ten rules for outstanding leaders Evaluation article: The governing body as a critical friend Evaluation article: Developing an ethos of high expectations Evaluation article: The exam post-mortem Evaluation article: Safeguarding: Everyone’s responsibility Evaluation article: How do inspectors make the judgement about overall effectiveness? The Ofsted model Evaluation article: Effective leadership builds effective teams Evaluation article: Baseline assessment and SEND Evaluation article: Making performance management count in school improvement Evaluation article: Joining or setting up a multi-academy trust Evaluation article: Case study from Carlton Bolling College: Ensuring high-quality governance Evaluation article: Using pupil voice to support school evaluation Evaluation article: What are the signs of a good school improvement service adviser? Evaluation article: Headteachers’ appraisal Evaluation article: Making CPD work harder Evaluation article: Using the Framework for governance Evaluation article: Interpreting the inspection dashboard Evaluation article: The government's Prevent guidance Evaluation article: Improving provision for the most able Evaluation article: Personal development, behaviour and welfare Evaluation article: Is there a mental health crisis in our schools? Evaluation article: Evaluating the effectiveness of assessment Evaluation article: Actively promoting fundamental British values Evaluation article: Raising boys’ achievement Evaluation article: National standards of excellence for headteachers Evaluation article: Governors and the inspection interview Evaluation article: Monitoring and coaching through lesson observation Evaluation article: CPD: Less measurement and more development Evaluation article: Challenging 
the most able Evaluation article: Using the teachers’ standards as a framework for CPD and accountability Evaluation article: Managing behaviour outside the classroom Evaluation article: Managing pupils’ behaviour in lessons Evaluation article: Keeping Children Safe Statutory Guidance Evaluation article: Four steps to school improvement Evaluation article: Finding a way through the jungle: The essence of leadership Evaluation article: How to audit your whole-school literacy provision Evaluation article: Professional development: the growing case for evidence Evaluation article: Getting personal  with CPD Evaluation article: Making performance appraisal an objective and helpful process Evaluation article: Parent View — an update Evaluation article: Raising pupil achievement through parental engagement: a practical approach Evaluation article: Effective parental engagement

Nurture groups and parental engagement

Nurture groups are a multi-dimensional group intervention with a whole-school focus, and running them successfully depends on a wide array of different factors. In this third and final article exploring…

Tackling bullying in schools - part one

Bullying is defined as: ‘Behaviour by an individual or group, usually repeated over time, that intentionally hurts another individual or group either physically or emotionally’. This article looks at the…

Aggression at work: Managing yourself and others

Conflict management is a vital skill for managers. Schools have clear policies on managing aggression in the classroom and playground. In this article Louise Wingrove looks at dealing with it…

Managing difficult conversations

Some conversations are always going to be uncomfortable. In this article, Louise Wingrove looks at managing difficult subjects with care and confidence.

The art of influence: Creating the best outcome

Louise Wingrove looks at how being aware of your impact on others can help everybody get what they need.

Change management and conflict

Nazli Hussein looks at the causes of conflict and the best ways to deal with it, with the best outcomes for those involved.

Managing anxiety at work

With growing awareness about anxiety and the impact it can have on both pupils and members of staff, Louis Wingrove looks at some ways to tackle the problem in the…

Interpreting data for 2017 performance

Tony Powell looks at the three different ways that a school’s academic performance is evaluated.

Evaluation article: Know your strengths

Can you make inspection an enriching learning process that is actually good for your school? Heather Clements of Best Practice Network offers some advice. 

Evaluation article: Developing an ethos of high expectation

In this article, Steve Burnage shares some practical strategies to enable school leaders to develop an ethos of high expectation in their schools. 

Achieving an ‘Outstanding’ Grade: Focused on Excellence

Tony Powell outlines a step-by-step approach to support schools in achieving the accolade of ‘outstanding’ as defined by Ofsted.

Evaluation article: HR and the successful school: A case study

Adrian Kneeshaw, Headteacher of Carlton Bolling College, gives a personal viewpoint of the benefits of bringing in the experts.

Evaluation article: Leading the way to outstanding learner progress

Steve Burnage discusses engaging with good practice in the leadership of teaching and learning.

Evaluation article: Attainment and progress: The Rochford Review

Tony Powell reports on the findings of the final Rochford Review.

Evaluation article: How to create a leadership team that drives school improvement

A high-performing leadership team is at the centre of any school improvement mission. But how do you go about creating an excellent SLT? Colin McLean of Best Practice Network asks…

Evaluation article: Prioritising the budget for school improvement

Adrian Kneeshaw of Carlton Bolling school gives advice on how to focus school spending on improvement planning.

Evaluation article: Transforming a failing school

Matt Bromley offers some advice on turning around an underperforming school in a short space of time while laying down the foundations for sustainable improvement.

Evaluation article: Evaluating alternative and specially resourced provision

Tony Powell explains how inspectors gather evidence and make judgements on the quality of alternative and specially resourced provision.

Evaluation article: Taking a school-wide approach to mental health and wellbeing

With concerns about mental health rising, what can schools do to help their pupils? Suzanne O’Connell outlines the advice available from the National Children’s Bureau and how it might be…

Evaluation article: The latest developments in education - January 2016

Suzanne O’Connell provides a look at what’s currently being discussed, debated and determined in the world of education.

Evaluation article: Managing uncertainty

If you are struggling with a sense of uncertainty, be reassured: you are not alone. 2016 has been a year of upheaval, with the promise of big changes on the…

Evaluation article: Pupil voice as an evaluation technique

Tony Powell provides guidance on how to use discussion with pupils as a tool for self-evaluation.

Evaluation article: The latest developments in education - September 2016

Suzanne O’Connell provides a look at what’s currently being discussed, debated and determined in the world of education.

Evaluation article: Deconstructing Ofsted: Reflection after inspection

Tony Powell looks at how to use the feedback from your inspection in school improvement planning.

Evaluation article: MAT expansion: Don’t let school improvement become a casualty

How can an expanding multi-academy trust ensure that school improvement doesn’t become a casualty of change? Colin McLean of Best Practice Network looks at the issue and offers some guidance.

Evaluation article: Ten rules for outstanding leaders

Adrian Kneeshaw looks at how leadership is important to the success of the school, and how to lead effectively.

Evaluation article: The governing body as a critical friend

In his second article on the headteacher and governor relationship, Tony Powell defines what is meant by a ‘critical friend’.

Evaluation article: Developing an ethos of high expectations

Steve Burnage shares some practical strategies to enable school leaders to develop an ethos of high expectations in their schools.

Evaluation article: The exam post-mortem

Matt Bromley considers how schools can learn from exam performance data and build this into school improvement.

Evaluation article: Safeguarding: Everyone’s responsibility

With new safeguarding guidance released, it’s time to check your arrangements and update your staff.

Evaluation article: How do inspectors make the judgement about overall effectiveness? The Ofsted model

This article outlines the Ofsted methodology for determining whether a school is ‘outstanding’, ‘good’, ‘requires improvement’ or ‘inadequate’.

Evaluation article: Effective leadership builds effective teams

Steve Burnage offers advice on motivating staff, getting the best from them and building effective teams.

Evaluation article: Baseline assessment and SEND

Suzanne O’Connell looks at a report on baseline assessment in primary schools and it’s affect on identifying children with SEND.

Evaluation article: Making performance management count in school improvement

What do you need to do to make performance management a watertight process that makes a real contribution to school improvement? Keith Wright has some suggestions.

Evaluation article: Joining or setting up a multi-academy trust

Tony Stephens, of the Co-operative Academies Trust, looks at what is the best type of multi-academy trust for a school to join or establish.

Evaluation article: Case study from Carlton Bolling College: Ensuring high-quality governance

Adrian Kneeshaw, Headteacher of Carlton Bolling, gives a personal take on renewing a failing governing body having designed and built one from scratch.

Evaluation article: Using pupil voice to support school evaluation

David Birch explains how capturing the views of students can sharpen school self-evaluation and have a positive impact on your school improvement strategies.

Evaluation article: What are the signs of a good school improvement service adviser?

Frank Norris offers advice on how to choose the most appropriate school improvement partner to work with your school.

Evaluation article: Headteachers’ appraisal

David Birch outlines best practice in the management of the headteacher appraisal process and offers advice for headteachers on how to make the most of appraisal in their own professional development.

Evaluation article: Making CPD work harder

Professional development is a crucial factor in school improvement and improving pupil outcomes, but it could work harder, says Keith Wright.

Evaluation article: Using the Framework for governance

Tony Powell looks at how the Framework for governance can be used to clarify the strategic direction of your school.

Evaluation article: Interpreting the inspection dashboard

There is a new inspection dashboard to go with Ofsted's new Common inspection framework. Tony Powell explains how it can be used.

Evaluation article: The government's Prevent guidance

Suzanne O'Connell considers the guidance available regarding Prevent and school leaders' responsibilities.

Evaluation article: Improving provision for the most able

Ofsted reports are making it clear. The DfE wants to see secondary schools challenging their most able students. In this article, Suzanne O’Connell summarises the criticisms and recommendations from ‘The…

Evaluation article: Personal development, behaviour and welfare

Tony Powell looks at the new key area ‘personal development, behaviour and welfare’ under the new Ofsted inspection framework.

Evaluation article: Is there a mental health crisis in our schools?

The mental health of children and young people is at the top of the agenda at the moment. Increased anxiety, self-harm and eating disorders are bringing some schools to crisis…

Evaluation article: Evaluating the effectiveness of assessment

Tony Powell interprets government guidance on assessment to help schools support self-evaluation.

Evaluation article: Actively promoting fundamental British values

Tony Powell advises on how schools can demonstrate that they are actively promoting fundamental British values.

Evaluation article: Raising boys’ achievement

John Viner looks at research into boys’ underachievement and reviews some successful strategies.

Evaluation article: National standards of excellence for headteachers

Tony Powell looks at the revised national standards for headteachers and how they should be used by schools.

Evaluation article: Governors and the inspection interview

Tony Powell discusses how to prepare governors in advance for an inspection interview.

Evaluation article: Monitoring and coaching through lesson observation

John Viner explores ways to develop a culture of continual improvement in teaching through lesson observation.

Evaluation article: CPD: Less measurement and more development

How can schools translate CPD into genuine improvement for staff? Keith Wright asked leaders to share their views, and discovered an emerging consensus about which approaches work best.

Evaluation article: Challenging 
the most able

Tony Powell looks at how to identify the most able pupils, and the key factors that enable the brightest pupils to achieve.

Evaluation article: Using the teachers’ standards as a framework for CPD and accountability

Tony Powell looks at how the teachers’ standards can be used to evaluate performance and support improvement.

Evaluation article: Managing behaviour outside the classroom

Since January 2014 there has been increased emphasis on the behaviour of pupils. In this article, Jim Donnelly offers advice on managing behaviour around the school.

Evaluation article: Managing pupils’ behaviour in lessons

David Birch offers advice on effective classroom management and argues that effective practice relies on a combination of the consistent application of agreed policy and the development of awareness and…

Evaluation article: Keeping Children Safe Statutory Guidance

This is statutory guidance, which means that schools and colleges (including academies and free schools) must have regard to it. It contains what schools should do and what they must…

Evaluation article: Four steps to school improvement

School improvement is a complex recipe that takes time to perfect. Keith Wright looks at some of the key barriers to school improvement and suggests strategies and systems to overcome…

Evaluation article: Finding a way through the jungle: The essence of leadership

Louise Wingrove gives practical advice on how to become a leader your team will want to follow.

Evaluation article: How to audit your whole-school literacy provision

Given that whole-school literacy is central to raising standards of achievement in schools and that it is a key focus for Ofsted, David Birch outlines some of the actions schools…

Evaluation article: Professional development: the growing case for evidence

Teachers are good at gathering evidence of pupil progress, but many find it difficult to do the same with regard to their own professional development.  Keith Wright looks at the…

Evaluation article: Getting personal with CPD

Less than a fifth of teachers in England’s schools think their continuing profession development (CPD) is any good, according to a recent survey. One of the keys to unlocking the…

Evaluation article: Making performance appraisal an objective and helpful process

Performance appraisal is crucial to school improvement, but many schools are still without a rigorous and transparent way of carrying it out, says Keith Wright. Here, he analyses the challenges…

Evaluation article: Parent View — an update

Jenny Townsend looks at the importance of Parent View in achieving an outstanding rating in inspection, and how comments from parents are used by Ofsted.

Evaluation article: Raising pupil achievement through parental engagement: a practical approach

Jenny Townsend explores how parental engagement can contribute to school improvement and in particular the role this can play in raising pupil achievement levels.

Evaluation article: Effective parental engagement

Ofsted’s Parent View means that parents have a direct influence on the decision to inspect. Jenny Townsend examines why this matters to schools.

Evaluation article: Actively promoting fundamental British values

Published: Wednesday, 01 July 2015

Tony Powell advises on how schools can demonstrate that they are actively promoting fundamental British values.

Summary

  • Ofsted inspections will ask for evidence of how the school actively promotes fundamental British values (FBV).
  • DfE guidance recommends schools use spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development for actively promoting fundamental British values.
  • The guidance suggests that schools can promote SMSC through collective worship and relevant activities beyond the classroom.
  • FBV includes ensuring that:
    • pupils are encouraged to regard people of all faiths, races and cultures with respect and tolerance
    • pupils understand that while people may hold different views about what is ‘right’ and ‘wrong’, all people living in England are subject to its law.

Transmitting values is part of a school’s core purpose, and the vast majority fulfil this excellently. Nevertheless, there is anxiety about the focus on fundamental British values and how to demonstrate effectiveness to inspectors. So, how do you actively promote fundamental British values?
This article provides some practical suggestions for how to do this.

Use the DfE guidance

The DfE guidance recommends that schools use spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development for actively promoting fundamental British values, since this is already a requirement. See the guidance: Promoting fundamental British values as part of SMSC in schools.

This suggests that schools can promote SMSC through collective worship, establishing a strong school ethos supported by effective relationships and providing relevant activities beyond the classroom. It is unequivocal about two points:

  • Pupils must be encouraged to regard people of all faiths, races and cultures with respect and tolerance.
  • Pupils should understand that while people may hold different views about what is ‘right’ and ‘wrong’, all people living in England are subject to its law.

British values and SMSC

General aims

These should include:

  • enabling students to develop self-knowledge, self-esteem and self-confidence
  • enabling students to distinguish right from wrong and respect the civil and criminal law
  • encouraging students to accept responsibility for their behaviour, show initiative and contribute positively to the lives of those living and working in the locality of the school and to society more widely
  • enabling students to acquire a broad knowledge of and respect for public institutions and services
  • further tolerance and harmony between different cultural traditions by enabling students to acquire an appreciation of and respect for their own and other cultures
  • encouraging respect for other people
  • encouraging respect for democracy and support for participation in the democratic processes, including respect for the basis on which the law is made and applied.

Specific aims

Pupils should know and understand:

  • how citizens can influence decision making through the democratic process
  • that living under the rule of law protects individual citizens and is essential for their wellbeing and safety
  • the separation of power between the executive and the judiciary
  • that while some public bodies, such as the police and the army, can be held to account through Parliament others, such as the courts, maintain independence
  • that freedom to choose and hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law
  • that other people who have different faiths or beliefs from oneself (or none) should be accepted and tolerated, and should not be the cause of prejudicial or discriminatory behaviour
  • the importance of identifying and combatting discrimination.

Examples of actions

These include:

  • curriculum material should include information 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 pupils 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 elected by the pupils
  • use opportunities such as elections to hold mock elections to promote fundamental British values and provide pupils with the opportunity to learn how to argue and defend points of view
  • use a wide variety of sources to help pupils understand a range of faiths
  • use extra-curricular activity, including any run directly by pupils, in promoting British values.

Articulating the school’s contribution

Mission statement and aims

Is there a match between the values expressed in the mission statement and the fundamental British values? Is it possible to strengthen the link?

School ethos

Ethos is often thought of as intangible, but visitors to different schools are very aware that they have different values and ways of doing things. Relationships are the key. If they are characterised by mutual respect, and if senior staff and teachers act as role models for pupils, then they are preparing those pupils to be responsible and caring adults.

Democracy should be embedded in the ethos, so senior leaders should be proactive in looking for ways in which parents and carers, staff and pupils can contribute to decisions about the strategic direction of the school.

School policies

Many of the school’s policies will make a statement about values, for example, equal opportunities, inclusion and behaviour.

Equality objectives

Schools are required to have and publish equality objectives and it is straightforward to frame objectives that make a contribution to the fundamental values.

Curriculum

If we define the curriculum as everything a pupil learns about in school, we are not limited to the formal curriculum, but can also include:

  • assemblies and acts of collective worship
  • subject schemes of work
  • PSHCE programme
  • form periods
  • timetable suspensions
  • extra-curricular activities
  • school council
  • eco work
  • charitable work
  • pupil responsibilities
  • contributions to local and wider communities
  • partnerships and school networks.

Be overt

In early March I visited a primary school. The foyer is huge. While I was waiting for the headteacher I studied the display boards, one of which was on the topic of ‘British Values’. The display was large and eye-catching but consisted of only published posters illustrating issues such as democracy, the rule of law and the range of cultures in our society.

When the headteacher arrived I commented on the display and asked why it didn’t contain any pupils’ work. She explained that the display was only the starting point for a whole-school topic. This would be introduced through an assembly led by the headteacher and the school council. Each class would then work on aspects of British values, starting with an introduction in the foyer using this display. Over the course of the project each class would contribute work to create a very large display in the hall. The topic would be rounded off with another whole-school assembly.

This faith school is very open about its values. However, the school’s interim assessment report said it would not be inspected before the summer term of 2015 and the headteacher was working towards receiving the call on the second day back. The inspector who is asked to collect evidence on fundamental British values will be delighted.

Further information

  • Promoting fundamental British values as part of SMSC in schools, DfE, November 2014,
  • Ref: DFE-00679-2014: http://bit.ly/PromotingFBV

Toolkit

Use the following items in the Toolkit to help you to put the ideas in this article into practice: 

About the author

Tony Powell is an experienced Additional Inspector and local authority adviser. He writes extensively on education management, but his main work is in supporting schools to develop systems for self-evaluation, school improvement and continuing professional development. Tony can be contacted at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This article was first published in the August 2015 issue of School Inspection and Improvement magazine.

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