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British Values and Protected Characteristics

British Values

Schools have a duty to actively promote the fundamental British values of;

  • democracy,
  • the rule of law,
  • individual liberty, and
  • mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.

We support the promotion of these British values to help ensure our young people leave school prepared for life in modern Britain.

At St. Nich's we teach the meaning of these values overtly but also believe we weave these values into our daily lives through the following ways  (NB This list is not exhaustive or final);

assembly content, School Council and voice of the child throughout the week, children develop ways of working (rules) in order to learn to work within rules or laws within wider society, Year 6 and class based responsibilities, our RE and PSHE curriculum content supports the development of mutual support and tolerance of difference in all its guises.

Protected Characteristics

The Equality Act became law in 2010. It covers everyone in Britain and protects people from discrimination, harassment and victimisation. Everyone in Britain is protected. This is because the Equality Act protects people against discrimination because of the protected characteristics that we all have. Under the Equality Act, there are nine Protected Characteristics:

  1. Age
  2. Disability
  3. Gender reassignment
  4. Race
  5. Religion or belief
  6. Marriage or civil partnership
  7. Sex
  8. Sexual orientation
  9. Pregnancy and maternity.

Under the Equality Act you are protected from discrimination:

  • When you are in the workplace
  • When you use public services like healthcare (for example, visiting your doctor or local hospital) or education (for example, at your school or college)
  • When you use businesses and other organisations that provide services and goods (like shops, restaurants, and cinemas)
  • When you use transport
  • When you join a club or association (for example, your local tennis club)
  • When you have contact with public bodies like your local council or government departments.

The 9 Protected Characteristics are actively promoted in our school through:

  • Our school vision and values,
  • Our school development plans,
  • Our school behaviour policy,
  • Conscious role modelling by all adults in the school community,
  • Active engagement and communication with parents and carers,
  • Assemblies,
  • British Values themes planned and discussed in assemblies,
  • Discussion within curriculum subjects, taking a cross-curricular approach,
  • Promoting articulation by building appropriate language and a coherent vocabulary,
  • Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE),
  • Religious Education (RE) lessons,
  • Sporting, art and cultural events,
  • Pupil voice including the School Council,
  • Educational visits,
  • Real-life learning outside the classroom,
  • Visiting speakers and specialists,
  • Developing links with local, regional and national communities,
  • Extra-curricular activities, after-school clubs, charity work and work within the local community

Embedding Protected Characteristics into the whole ethos of our school promotes:

  • Self-esteem, self-knowledge and self-confidence,
  • Respect for democracy and support for participation in the democratic process,
  • Acceptance of responsibility for their own behaviour,
  • Respect for their own and other cultures,
  • Understanding of how they can contribute positively to school and home life and to the lives of those living and working in the locality and further afield,
  • An understanding of Equality, Human Rights and Protected Characteristics,
  • An understanding of how citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process,
  • An appreciation that living under the rule of law protects individual citizens and is essential for their wellbeing and safety,
  • An understanding that the freedom to choose and hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law,
  • An acceptance that other people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none) should be accepted and tolerated, and should not be the cause of prejudicial or discriminatory behaviour,
  • An understanding of the importance of identifying and combating discrimination.