British values

The Department for Education states that there is a need for schools to promote fundamental British values. These are:

  • Rule of law
  • Democracy
  • Tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs 
  • Mutual respect
  • Individual liberty 

At Paxton Academy we are committed to promoting values which ensure our pupils develop a strong sense of social and moral responsibility which will prepare them for life in modern Britain. As well as following the school values (R.E.S.P.E.C.T.), we are proud to promote the following British Values throughout the curriculum:


Paxton values pupil voice and we ask the pupils about their learning, their concerns and for their ideas about how we can make things better for them. We do this by using focus group discussions, pupil questionnaires and through our school council system. At the beginning of each academic year pupils vote for their class representatives through an election process. Through their class representatives children have the opportunity to have their voices heard at school council meetings with a senior member of staff.

The Rule of Law

Pupils learn about our high expectations for behaviour on entry and throughout the year. This is further enhanced through assemblies and PSHE lessons. Pupils learn about the importance of having rules and how these relate to laws. We use a range of PSHE resources, including visitors and educational visits to promote moral, spiritual, social and cultural awareness among our pupils. Our children have a well-developed sense of justice. They are increasingly able to understand and discuss why there needs to be consequences for those who break the rules or laws. By being immersed in the ethos of the school, our children learn about their responsibility to be law abiding citizens.

Individual Liberty

Alongside rules and laws, we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. Through the provision of a safe, supportive environment and empowering education, we provide boundaries for our children to make choices safely; for example:

  • Choices about what learning challenge or activity to do
  • Choices around the participation in extra-curricular activities
  • Choices about lunchtime options, and so on

Our behaviour policy is built on the principle that children are responsible for their own actions and choices and that these have consequences. Our sanctions system provides reflection time where pupils are able to think about the impact of their choices. Individual children are supported by sports mentors as well as receiving regular support in a small nurture group. During PSHE, e-Safety lessons and assemblies, pupils are taught how to keep themselves safe whilst they exercise their rights and personal freedoms. Safeguarding is embedded in every aspect of life at the school.

Mutual Respect and Tolerance

Our ethos is based on mutual respect, equality and friendship. Adults actively model respect with one another, and with the children, in how we speak and treat one another. Our academy is a diverse community and, through the national curriculum, we promote an awareness of different faiths and we encourage our pupils to recognise and understand these faiths. Our pupils naturally show tolerance for others and have a curiosity to find out and understand cultures and faiths that are different from their own. Our children visit main places of worship in and around the local area. All staff model a tolerant and accepting attitude. We use assemblies to raise and discuss issues of bullying and prejudice and reinforce learning during curriculum time.

At Paxton, we actively challenge pupils, parents or staff who express opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including extremist views.

British Values through the Curriculum

Interwoven within the curriculum in a range of curriculum areas are planned opportunities to teach the values of our British society. Some examples are:

PSHE: How we influence democracy is explored though PSHE and whole school assemblies. This includes looking at historical figures such as Nelson Mandela, The British Monarchy and Gandhi and exploring the effectiveness of different approaches. The Rule of Law, the importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country is consistently reinforced. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our e-safety and PSHE lessons.

Geography: As the children get older we will ensure that children have a better understanding of what Britain is, learning more about its capital cities and counties, its rivers and mountains, where Britain is in relation to the rest of Europe and other countries in the world.

History: Britain and its influence in modern times are aspects woven into our curriculum.

Music: The study of British composers and their influence worldwide.

Art: The study of how British artist influence others around the world.

Religious, Moral & Spiritual Education: Gaining a greater understanding of religious diversity and practices, this covers key religions represented in the UK.  Planning for the subject is directed by the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE) –Croydon Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education. All children have the opportunity to visits places of worship that are important to different to faiths. Paxton Academy actively promotes diversity through celebrations of different faiths and cultures.

Physical Education: Promotion of the concept of “fair play”, following and developing rules, inclusion, celebrating and rewarding success, being magnanimous in defeat and participation in activities that promote kinship and affiliation with others.

Computing: Children are also taught about respect and bullying in the online world through regular e-safety lessons and talks by the local police.

Pupil Leadership: Promotion of democratic processes through school council, fostering the concept and application of freedom of speech and group action to address needs and concerns.  Key to this is the concept of holding others to account, including those in positions of influence and authority.

Educational visits: Our broad range of educational visits and experiences outside of the classroom equip our children with the skills to make a positive contribution to their community as equal citizens, as well as being able to look at British heritage in more depth. 

Community Events: We support a range of charities and participate in national fund raising events. In addition we encourage our children to interact with children from other schools, both locally and further afield, through organised activities.