Religious Education, British Values & SMSC

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Religious Studies

(Beliefs, Values & Traditions)

At The Trafalgar School Religious Studies is a compulsory subject for all students in Key Stage 3 and an option subject at Key Stage 4.  

Understanding religion, in all its forms, is the foundation of students' Religious Education at Trafalgar.  It draws on the richness and diversity of religious teachings and beliefs from across the world.  The encounter is an open one which stems from, and instils, respect for different views and interpretations and in which real dialogue and education takes place.  students will be enabled to deepen their understanding of God as encountered and taught by different religions and, as a result, students will gain greater insight into the world in which they are growing up.  They will also be able to appreciate the faith of others and develop a deeper understanding of their own beliefs and practices.

These outcomes will contribute to harmonious relationships within and between communities, promoting social inclusion and combating prejudice.  At GCSE, students study Buddhism in depth in addition to Christianity.

The Right to Withdraw from

Religious Education

Any parent has a right to withdraw their child from Religious Education (RE).  If a parent asks for their child to be wholly, or partly, excused from attending any RE at the school, the school must comply unless the request is withdrawn.  The school remains responsible for the supervision of any child withdrawn from RE, unless the child is lawfully receiving Religious Education elsewhere.  Parents do not need to explain their reasons for seeing withdrawal.

If a parent is wishing to withdraw their child from RE it is kindly requested that they contact the headteacher directly.  it is helpful to know the religious issues leading to the request and the practical implications of withdrawal.

We teach the importance of British Values by going much deeper into the meaning of what it means to live a good life.

Rachael Faulkner, Deputy Headteacher

& SMSC Lead

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British Values

The promotion of 'British Values' is central to education at The Trafalgar School as British Values have their origin in the values of our nation.  They form a core aspect of our delivery of Social, Moral, Spiritual and cultural education.

These values are:

  • Rule of Law

  • Individual Liberty

  • Mutual Respect

  • Tolerance of those of Different Faiths & Beliefs

  • Democracy

At The Trafalgar School we recognise the importance of helping students to flourish academically but also spiritually, morally, socially and culturally, so that they are fully prepared for life in British society and for their role as citizens, able to make the strongest possible contribution to the common good of all.

We teach the importance of British Values by going much deeper into the meaning of what it means to live a good life.  We place a significant emphasis on the celebration of individuality and difference within our communities and our calling to work together for the common good in the service of others.  Our school Vision and Values which includes explicit reference to British Values, make a tangible difference to the way we work together and with our wider communities.  The examples that follow are an indication of some of the many ways we seek to embed British Values at The Trafalgar School and should be seen as an indication of our approach, rather than an exhaustive list.

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The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country (civil or criminal) are consistently reinforced through every day, as well as when dealing with behaviour.  The curriculum is designed to ensure students are taught the values and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities this involves and the consequences when laws are broken

Individual Liberty

Students are actively encouraged to make independent choices knowing that they are in a safe, secure and supportive environment. As a school, we educate and provide boundaries for students to make choices safely, through the provision of a safe environment and an empowering education. We encourage students to accept responsibility for their own behaviour and see themselves as individuals able to make a contribution to building community.  Students are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights, responsibilities and personal freedoms and receive advice about how to exercise these safely.

Respect is one of our core values and is modelled by students and staff alike.  The school promotes respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning environments as well as extra-curricular activities such as sport.  Our emphasis on ethics, fairness and justice means that we ask our students to ensure that they look out for those who might be marginalised and disadvantaged.  Our approach to teaching and learning across the school fosters mutual respect throughout the curriculum and our Student Code of Conduct promotes the values both of respect and responsibility.  The school has taken a very strong stance on social inclusion and anti-bullying through an explicit focus on strategies to enable respect for difference by (for example) reflections on bullying and diversity.

Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs is achieved through equipping students with the ability to develop positive values, understand their own beliefs and their place in a culturally diverse society.  We give our student opportunities to experience such diversity within the school community and within the wider community. All students experience a connection with other cultures and beliefs through our Religious Education and PSHCE programmes and local, regional and international links.  Our Religious Studies curriculum provides a broad and balanced education, which includes an understanding of and respect of people of her faiths or none and other religions, cultures and lifestyles.

In line with our commitment to democracy, students are always able to voice their opinions as we foster an environment where students can debate ideas and are encouraged to disagree with each other.  We also encourage students to substantiate opinions and to realise the value of co-operation and consensus as well as decision making through voting.  The election of the Senior Prefects is an effective mechanism for participation in the democratic process, as are regular student voice activities on a range of topics, such as teaching and learning, behaviour and wellbeing.  The School Council and Eco-Council are active groups within the school.

The Rule of Law

Mutual Respect

Tolerance

Democracy

 

Social Moral, Spiritual & Cultural Education

To find out more about Social, Moral, Spiritual & Cultural (SMSC) education across the curriculum please download the relevant PDF file by clicking on the subject links below.