Spiritual, Moral, Social & Cultural Development (SMSC)
At St. Patrick’s, we recognise that the personal development of pupils, spiritually, morally, socially and culturally, contributes to their ability to learn and achieve. Within the ethos of the school, we therefore aim to provide an education that provides pupils with opportunities to explore and develop their own values and beliefs, spiritual awareness, high standards of personal behaviour, a positive, caring attitude towards other people, an understanding of their social and cultural traditions and an appreciation of the diversity and richness of the cultures.
An important part of SMSC is to support children to engage with British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and respect for different faiths and beliefs.
St. Patricks is required under section 78 of the Education Act 2002 to promote the spiritual, moral, mental and physical development of pupils. As of November 2014, schools also need promote fundamental British values as part of the school curriculum.
St. Patricks is committed to serving its community. It recognises the multi-cultural, multi-faith and ever-changing nature of the UK. It also understands the vital role it has in ensuring that groups or individuals within the school are not subjected to intimidation or radicalisation by those wishing to unduly, or illegally, influence them.
It follows equal opportunities guidance which guarantees that there will be no discrimination against any individual or group, regardless of faith, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, political or financial status, or similar. St. Patricks is dedicated to preparing pupils for their adult life beyond the formal, examined curriculum and ensuring that it promotes and reinforces British values to all its pupils.
The DfE has suggested that pupils are taught about fundamental British values during their spiritual, moral and cultural (SMSC) classes. Pupils are expected to display knowledge of the fundamental aspects of British values. The government has outlined their expectations, stating that pupils should:
Understand the democratic process and how citizens can have a say in decision making.
Recognise the advantages to living under the rule of law and how law is essential for a safe society.
See that there is a separation of power and why it exists.
Understand the reasons for accountability of institutions and why courts maintain independence.
Know why freedom of religion protects all faiths, as well as those with no faith.
Accept that people who hold different religious beliefs should be tolerated and not be discriminated against.
Value the importance of identifying and combatting extremism.
St. Patricks does not have to promote or teach any particular belief, view or way of life that contradicts our outlook or ethos; however, we will not promote discrimination, or accept intolerance against people or groups, on the basis of their belief, opinion or background.