Promotion of British values
At Leeds East Academy we recognise not only the importance of allowing students to flourish academically but we also embrace our wider role in preparing them for their adult life beyond the formal examined curriculum. Part of our role in that preparation is to ensure that we promote and reinforce British values to our students.
The government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy and considered them to be: democracy, rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs. At Leeds East Academy these values are regularly reinforced through our core values.
The examples that follow are an indication of some of the many ways we seek to embed British values at LEA and should be seen as an indication of our approach rather than an exhaustive list.
At LEA the principle of democracy is consistently reinforced, with the democratic process being employed for important decisions within the school community, for instance, elections being held for School Council and Year 11 Student Leaders. The principle of democracy is explored in Humanities as well as in as our assemblies.
The rule of law
The importance of law, whether they be those that govern the class, the academy, or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days. Students are taught the values and reasons behind laws and their purpose is to govern and protect us. Students are also taught that if laws are broken then inevitably a consequence follows. In the academy this could be in the form of a comment or a formal sanction but in the wider world this could lead to being in trouble with the police and facing consequences such as fines for speeding while driving or going to prison for more severe crimes.
Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message as well as our ‘Prison me no way day’ which KS 3 students take part in.
Within LEA students are actively encouraged to make independent choices knowing that they are in a safe, secure and supportive environment. As an academy we educate and provide boundaries for students to make safe choices, through the provision of a safe environment and an empowering education. Students are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights, responsibilities and personal freedoms and receive advice about how to exercise these safely, for example through our exploration of E-Safety in computing. In our January 2015 inspection, Ofsted believed: ‘Student safety is a high priority for all staff and child protection and safeguarding procedures meet statutory requirements and make a good contribution to ensuring students are safe’.
In our January 2015 Ofsted believed ‘Leaders provide good role models for staff and pupils. They are highly visible around the academy and consistently encourage pupils to uphold high standards of behaviour’. Respect is one of our core values and is modelled by students and staff alike. The academy promotes respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning environments. In line with our commitment to democracy, students at LEA are always able to voice their opinions and we foster an environment in tutorial and soaring to success sessions where students are safe to disagree with each other. Mutual respect is embraced throughout the curriculum from the concept of ‘fair play’ in PE, debating during RE and soaring to success sessions to the student mentoring programme which promotes mutual respect and support between students across different year groups within the academy.
Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
This is achieved through equipping students with the ability to understand their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity within the academy community. Students are actively encouraged to share their faith and beliefs within the school. Our Religious Studies curriculum provides a broad and balanced education on a range of faiths, religions and cultures. Faiths different beliefs, cultures and respecting these are also explored through assemblies and our tutor program. In our January 2015 inspection, Ofsted believed students: ‘socialise well between lessons and are well mannered.’