Last week, we held a series of Safeguarding events for our students.
Last week, we held a series of Safeguarding events for our students. We live in a society where it is increasingly important to ensure that our students and staff are aware of the dangers around them; how to stay safe, how to keep themselves from harm and how to take responsibility for their own and others’ safety - issues related to e safety, child protection, health and safety are all important aspects of this agenda. This was well received by our students and parents and indeed, I hope that it helps them feel safe and secure in their school environment. There is no doubt, that when we hear of the very unfortunate safeguarding events highlighted in junior sports this week, it makes you realise the importance of providing such a setting for our students.
Nowadays, as in all schools, we also have to demonstrate how we are addressing the Prevent Duty – that is protecting children from the risk of radicalisation. The government requires schools to do this by promoting British values and enabling them to challenge extremist views. This has been grimly relevant in a year that has seen the very worst of humanity in terms of lack of tolerance and understanding across the world.
We try to do everything we can in school to promote respect for, and tolerance of, other cultures and religions. I am always grateful, for example, to Mrs Giles for her weekly direction towards interesting sources of information and debate around religion and philosophy through our assembly themes and awareness days. We also promote and celebrate ‘fundamental British values’ (defined as “democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs”) but which are, of course, values shared by many millions of people worldwide.
However, in my view, the best lessons about tolerance and understanding will come, this week, from our International Cultural Festival. We will be celebrating over 33 different cultures. Our theme for the week is also ‘Participation’. Our International Ambassadors will be working hard to promote an awareness of others and most importantly, an appreciation of others too. I have no doubt that our students will be keen to ‘participate’ and share ideas and values, but that they will do this in a safe and secure environment too.