Ethos and Values
Our Ethos Statement
We aim to serve our community by providing an education of the highest quality within the context of religious belief and practice. We encourage an understanding of the meaning and significance of faith and promote Christian and British values through the experiences we offer to all our pupils.
Through recognising our historical foundation, Waltham-on-the-Wolds Church of England Primary School, will preserve and develop our religious character in accordance with the principles of the Church of England and in partnership with our Trust and local churches, at parish and diocesan level, whilst respecting the views of those with no religion, belief or faith. We are an inclusive school and as such our school family is strengthened.
In our small rural, church school our vision is to maximise the potential of all learners and encourage them to become responsible global citizens. Based on our Christian and British values we cherish our community and family partnerships, where we celebrate friendship, diversity and inclusion.
"In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven." Matthew 5:16
Our fundamental values are rooted in Christianity and British moral standards. We are passionate about demonstrating them in our daily lives and we plan lessons and activities that explore deeper thinking to broaden understanding. An example of this is how we teach the following core values through four specific Bible stories that children can relate well to:
- Friendship - Bible Story of 'Ruth and Naomi' (Ruth 11-13 and 14-22)
- Love - (Verses in Corinthians 13:4-8)
- Perseverance - Bible Story of 'Joseph and his Brothers' (Genesis 37-50)
- Respect and compassion - Bible Story of 'The Good Samaritan' (Luke 10:25-37)
Our Vision and Values have been devised in collaboration with staff, pupils, parents and governors and is a reflection of the strength of our partnership as a whole community.
The government has set out its definition of British values in the 'Prevent Strategy' and emphasises that schools are required to ensure these values are taught across the United Kingdom.
At Waltham-on-the-Wolds Church of England Primary School we have always recognised the importance of educating our children so that they understand the multi-faith and multi-cultural Britain we live in today. We provide opportunities and life experiences that will help our children to contribute to an ever changing, diverse society throughout their lives.
Democracy is embedded at our school. Pupils are taught to listen carefully and with concern for each other, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinions and voices heard. Our pupils are taught the value of respecting themselves and others around them, as well as their belongings and world around them. Children have the opportunity to express their opinions and ideas through our Owl Ministry, for example, which is made up of elected members from each class by pupil votes, reflecting our British electoral system and demonstrating democracy in action. Our robust behaviour policy, devised by the children with staff, governors and parents, involves both rewards and sanctions; children are clear about the expectations at our school as they were all involved in creating the school rules.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, is consistently reinforced through our curriculum, behaviour system and through Collective Worship. Each class sing and discuss our School Rule Song to ensure they understand what is expected and to learn about making sensible choices; this ensures that every child is able to learn in a happy, safe environment where everyone supports one another. We expect our children to behave impeccably when they are on trips and visits outside of school; they are taught, through our behaviour policy, what happens if they break the rules and that the wrong choices have consequences. Our children are always praised for their excellent behaviour and attitude when out of school or when we receive visitors; they were recently awarded a 'Pride of the Games' award for outstanding demonstration of the Olympic Values at a local sports tournament.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we provide boundaries for our pupils to make choices safely, through the provision of a secure environment and an empowering education. Our pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely and sensibly; examples of this can be seen in our teaching of e-safety, for example. Whether it is through the curriculum or through participation in our extra- curricular activities, our pupils are given the freedom to make choices. Pupils are also given the opportunity to engage in their own learning through setting their own personal targets with their teacher and through self-assessment of their work.
Respect is one of the core values that is tangible at our school. The teaching and learning of Christian values is inherent in all we do, but specifically taught through Religious Education, Collective Worship, Messy Fiesta and Personal Social Health and Citizenship Education(PSHCE). This helps to develop self-esteem and positive relationships with others. Children embrace leadership roles such as Assembly Monitors and the Anti-bullying Steering Group where they put together presentations for the rest of school and influence policy and practice. Other children respond respectfully and willingly and eagerly answer questions and respond readily to evaluations which the leaders incorporate in to their plenaries.
Tolerance of those with Different Faiths and Beliefs
Our school enhances pupils understanding of different faiths and beliefs through a broad approach to Religious Education, using the Leicester Syllabus for RE, through our daily acts of Collective Worship and our varied PSHCE curriculum. Our worship time includes sharing ideas, events, prayer, music and stories to learn about diversity. We visit a variety of different places of worship, such as Sikh and Hindu temples, Catholic and Methodist churches as well as Leicester Cathedral and we recognise different festivals through our project work and links with an inner city school in Leicester. We participate in sporting events across Leicestershire, music festivals and competitions such as the 3M Young Innovators Awards which enable them to meet and work with people from many different backgrounds.
Our School Logo
Our school logo depicts an owl; a beautiful barn owl with a heart-shaped face that mirrors the love we share for one another in our school community.
Owls are a symbol of wisdom and learning. Wisdom is to use knowledge and experience to make sensible choices, good decisions, good judgements; this is deeply rooted in faith and helps shape who we are and who we become.
There are many references in the Bible that refer to wisdom, for example: “Listen to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom in the future.” (Proverbs 19:20). Teachings such as this can help us to become deep thinkers, insightful learners; adaptable, perceptive and intuitive. The symbol of the owl offers inspiration and guidance to deeply explore the unknown and the mysteries of life.
Owls have feathers to keep them warm, like the arms of our school keeping us safe within. We are protected, safeguarded, and loved.