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Montpelier High School supports and delivers a firm commitment to developing and upholding British Values.
At Montpelier High School we look to actively engage our students in the democratic process. The importance of our ‘Student Voice’ is central to this. All students from each House have an opportunity to be elected onto the Student Council and the House Food Council. These meet weekly to discuss issues concerning the students and school. Throughout the year, students are invited to Tea with the Head and with their Heads of Houses as another opportunity to meet and discuss their views and opinions. Pupil voice surveys are also carried out on a regular basis by each department as part of their quality assurance. We hold our own MHS elections, to coincide with local and national elections, to emulate and actively engage students in the electoral process. During curriculum time, the importance of democracy is taught in a variety of ways during PSHE, tutor time, assemblies and in departmental subject specific content.
THE RULE OF LAW
The importance of Laws, whether they be those that govern the class or country are consistently reinforced throughout all aspects of life at Montpelier High School. Students and parents/carers are taught the value and reasons behind our rules, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. We have regular visits and talks on the rule of law from Law Students from Bristol University and the Avon & Somerset Police.
Students are actively encouraged to make choices and to take on leadership roles at Montpelier High School, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. Our House system provides the students with a broad range of leadership opportunities, challenges and competitions throughout the year. Through our PSHE curriculum, we educate and provide boundaries for students to make their choices safely. Students are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely. Students are also given the freedom to make choices at Montpelier High School. They have the opportunity to choose learning challenges within lessons, take part in a one hour enrichment on a Wednesday and participate in our co-curricular clubs and activities.
MUTUAL RESPECT AND TOLERANCE OF THOSE OF DIFFERENT FAITHS AND BELIEFS
We are proud to celebrate our cultural diversity at Montpelier High School. We see it as exceptionally important to promote the diversity of our student and staff body and raise awareness of our cultural differences. Our Tutor Group system provides daily opportunities for open dialogue and learning between students of different ages and backgrounds. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes, just as our students and staff are able to share their cultural heritage and experiences. We hold assemblies and events focusing on identity, culture and diversity. Mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs is also taught as part of the PSHE curriculum. Visiting speakers and trips to experience other cultures and faiths are an integral part of the experience for students at Montpelier High School.
THE WIDER CURRICULUM AND BRITISH VALUES
Within the wider curriculum and its delivery we expect all students irrespective of gender, ethnic origin or beliefs:
- To participate in PE lessons
- All students are expected to take part in Art, Music, Drama and PSHE lessons
- To participate in wider activities and discussions, for example, during lessons and tutor time, that uphold British values
- To show tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.
RADICALISATION AND EXTREMISM
Montpelier High School believes and actively supports the view that all students should be protected from radicalisation and extremism. Our approach to this is in line with the Government’s CONTEST strategy (the counter terrorist strategy) and PREVENT (stopping people becoming supporting terrorism or becoming terrorists). The Avon & Somerset Police support us in this by teaching our students and staff about PREVENT.
The statutory guidance within the Prevent duty summarises the requirements on schools and childcare providers in terms of four general themes:
- Risk assessment
- Working in partnership
- Staff training
- IT policies.
In an educational context, Prevent is a tool for supporting and protecting children and young people who are vulnerable and at risk of being radicalised. The statutory guidance makes it clear that schools are expected to assess the risks of children being drawn into terrorism and/or supporting extremist ideas. Understanding how and where young people can be put at risk of extremism and radicalisation is the critical first step in addressing the threat.
Schools are expected to take a ‘risk based approach’ and perform a risk assessment to inform the responses needed to protect pupils.
MHS uses the Prevent risk assessment as a guide to help us assess the risks affecting children in the local area and identify students who:
- May be at risk of radicalisation
- Ensure an appropriate referral process is in place
- Develop multi agency approaches to address safeguarding issues
- Ensure effective learning opportunities to safeguard children from extremism
- Promote community cohesion.
Our Prevent self-assesment and action plan can be viewed by clicking the link below:
Radicalisation is the process by which people come to support terrorism and extremism, and in some, cases participate in terrorist groups. Extremism is the vocal or active opposition to the fundamental British values.
Our 100% commitment to safeguarding student welfare means we are vigilant to monitoring vulnerability to radicalisation including:
- Family tensions
- Sense of isolation
- Distance from cultural heritage
- Experience of racism or discrimination
- Feeling of failure
Any concerns must be reported to the Designated Safeguarding Lead and members of the Pastoral Team.
A CROSS-CURRICULAR APPROACH
We deliver a cross curricular approach throughout Montpelier High School to the delivery of SMSC, including British Values
- via current affairs – via our weekly vertical tutor discussion sessions centred on a topic in the news such as Extremism
- via assemblies – sessions centred on a theme that links to British Values, for example, Human Rights and Freedom
- via student leadership – actively voting in elections at all levels to elect posts of responsibility
- via RS and PSHE lessons – exploring beliefs and values of other faiths including multicultural celebrations
- In subjects where we map how other subjects deliver knowledge and understanding of key concepts that link to British Values.