Community Cohesion Policy
At Belvidere Primary school, we aim to build mutual respect through our school ethos, aims and values and attempt to take positive steps to promote equality and tolerance.
We strive to foster excellent and valued relationships between governors, staff, parents and their children and all agencies, community and local groups.
We believe in contributing and working towards a society in which:-
· There is a common vision and sense of belonging by all communities;
· The diversity of people’s backgrounds and circumstances is appreciated and valued;
· Similar life opportunities are available to all;
· Strong and positive relationships exist and continue to be developed in schools, in the workplace and in the wider community.
Purpose of the policy
The aim of this policy is to outline the key role that School has to play in promoting community cohesion and define the various approaches the school will take in order to realise these aims.
Community from a school’s perspective
For schools, the term ‘community’ has a number of dimensions including:
The school community - the children and young people it serves, their parents, carers and families, the school’s staff and governing body, and community users of the school’s facilities
· The community within which the school is located - the school in its geographical community and the people who live or work in that area. This applies not just to the immediate neighbourhood but also to the town or local authority area within which a school is located;
· The UK community - all schools are by definition part of this community;
· The global community - formed by EU and international links.
Governors and staffs are responsible for preparing the pupils to live and prosper alongside people from many different backgrounds. We need to ensure that we:
· Provide opportunities for interaction between pupils from different backgrounds
· Consider how aspects of our work already supports integration and community harmony
· Take stock of what has worked so far, for us and other schools and consider the scope for a more explicit focus on the impact of our activities on community cohesion
Ways of promoting community cohesion
Our school promotes community cohesion through various activities:
Within the school:
• Charity support
• Sharing good practice (INSET etc.)
• Collaborative working on projects
With parents and the local and wider community:
• Allowing community groups to use the hall, field etc.
• Enabling parents and community members to make suggestions for improvements
• Supporting parents with difficulties
Approaches taken at Belvidere School
Our school, due to the nature of its location, serve a predominant monoculture population. It is arguably even more important, therefore, to give our pupils opportunities to learn with, from and about those from different backgrounds. We achieve this through our approach to
· Learning and teaching: teaching pupils to understand others, promoting discussion and debate about common values and diversity.
· Equity and excellence: removing barriers to access and participation, offering equal opportunities to all our pupils to succeed at the highest level possible
· Engagement and extended services: providing opportunities for children, young people and their families to interact with others from different backgrounds.
Learning and teaching
· Teaching and curriculum provision (Religious Education, PHSCE, collective worship and assemblies that supports high standards of attainment, promotes common values, and builds pupils' understanding of the diversity that surrounds them;
· Lessons across the curriculum that promote common values and help pupils to value differences and challenge prejudice and stereotyping;
· A programme of curriculum based activities whereby pupils' understanding of community and diversity is enriched through fieldwork, visits and meetings with members of different communities;
· Support for pupils for whom English is an additional language to enable them to achieve at the highest possible level in English.
Equity and excellence
· A focus on securing high standards of attainment for all pupils irrespective of ethnic background or socio-economic status;
· Systematic tracking of pupil’s progress in academic subjects and emotional, social and behavioural development,
· Providing equal opportunities for all to succeed;
· Removal of barriers to access and participation in learning activities and eliminating
variations in outcomes for different groups;
· Effective policies and practices in place to deal with incidents of prejudice, bullying andharassment;
· Ensuring that admissions policy and practice do not deter parents from particular
communities from applying.
· Ensuring that recruitment of staff and staffing policies promote community cohesion and social equity.
· Analysing and comparing of data with other similar data nationwide; this would facilitate our understanding of success and areas for development for our school in the overall field of Community Cohesion.
Engagement and extended services
School to school:
· Partnership arrangements to share good practice and offer pupils the opportunity to meet and learn from other young people from different backgrounds;
· Links built into existing schemes of work and grounded in the curriculum with pupils working together on a joint project or activity.
School to parents and the community:
· Working with members of the community by encouraging them to visit school to work with pupils;
· Strong links and multi-agency working between the school and other local agencies, such as the youth support service, the police and social care and health professionals;
· Engagement with parents through e.g. open days, curriculum evenings, parent and child courses and other events;
· Provision of extended services and community use of facilities for activities that take place out of school hours, including adult and family learning;
· Engagement with the governing body, parent teacher association and ‘friends of the school’ through meetings and social events linked to the school.
Through our curriculum planning, bringing visitors into the school, making visits to other communities, listening to our ‘pupil voice’, working closely with parents in learning partnerships etc. can enhance the understanding for our pupils about diversity and the society in which we live, thus developing the necessary skills in order for them to become valued and valuable members of the future community in which they live.
MONITORING THIS POLICY
The Chair of the Curriculum Committee will monitor the application of this Policy and take appropriate steps to ensure that it is operating effectively.