Statement of Intent
It is our belief that every school, irrespective of its intake and location is responsible for educating young people who will live and work in a country which is diverse. The curriculum of Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical (SMCMP) development of all our pupils to prepare them for wider responsibilities, experiences and opportunities in life after they leave our school.
Our duty is to promote community cohesion through eliminating unlawful discrimination, and encouraging equality of opportunity and good relationships between people of different groups.
As migration and economic change alter the shape of our local and national communities, it is more important than ever to support community cohesion. Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School is, and will continue to be, an integral part in building a more cohesive society.
This policy supports the work of other school policies such as:
- Race Equality.
- Equal Opportunities.
- Disability Equality Duty.
- Gender Equality.
To prepare our pupils for living in a diverse and cohesive society, we strive to:
- Encourage the development of pupils’ individual identities.
- Encourage positive and open attitudes towards diversity, and the development of the skills, understanding and confidence to challenge prejudice, discrimination and stereotyping.
- Support pupils in becoming active members of society who recognise their rights and responsibilities.
- Ensure they receive a broad and balanced education and succeed in reaching their potential.
- Provide opportunities for positive interaction with people from a variety of backgrounds in the local and wider community.
1. What is community cohesion?
We define ‘community cohesion’ as working towards a society in which:
- There is a sense of belonging by all communities.
- The diversity of people’s backgrounds and circumstances are appreciated and valued.
- Similar life opportunities are available to all.
- Strong and positive relationships exist, and continue to be developed in the workplace, school and wider community.
- Social mobility is encouraged and facilitated.
2. Community from the school’s perspective
Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School defines ‘community’ in a number of ways:
- School community – the pupils we serve, their families, and our staff members.
- Our local community – our geographical community, and the people who live and/or work in our area.
- The community of Britain – all schools, by definition, are part of it.
- The global community – formed by the European Union (EU) and international links.
3. Our strategic aims
Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School’s contribution to community cohesion can be grouped under the following headings:
3.1 Teaching, learning and curriculum
Our teaching and the curriculum provision supports high standards of attainment, promotes common values, and helps pupils understand and value the diversity that surrounds them. Lessons taught across our curriculum provide various opportunities for pupils to develop their understanding and empathy, promote awareness of the rights of individuals, and to develop the teamwork, skills of participation and responsible action.
3.2 Equality and excellence
At Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School,there is a focus on securing high standards of attainment for all pupils and removing barriers to learning both in the classroom and in the wider world. Effective procedures exist within our school to tackle prejudice, bullying and harassment. Our admission process promotes community cohesion and social equality.
3.3 Engagement and ethos
Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School prides itself in providing opportunities for young people and their families to interact and build positive relationships with people from different backgrounds, including links with different schools and communities locally, nationally, internationally and on a wider basis where possible. Engagement with parents through an open-door ethos, parents’ evenings, festivals, other celebrations are considered a priority at the school. It is important to involve children in decision-making and the organisation of the school, teaching pupils the importance of participation and making a difference to the school, local community and beyond.
4. How do we contribute to community cohesion?
Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School as well as all others, are responsible for equipping our pupils to live alongside people from many different backgrounds.
Riddlesden St Mary’s CE Primary School ensures:
- Training of staff members and Governors their responsibilities.
- That all staff members are able to promote community cohesion.
- The development of partnerships.
- That the admissions policy reflects the catchment area.
- That all pupils can access the full curriculum.
- That there is equal access to education and training.
- Pupils are heard and can effect change.
4.1 Protecting pupils from extremism and radicalisation
Every school is required by law to teach a broad and balanced curriculum which promotes the SMCMP development of pupils. A part of this is to safeguard against biased or unbalanced teaching and the promotion of partisan political views. Under all circumstances, pupils will be protected from extremism and radicalisation through our Anti-Terrorism Policy.