What do ‘British values’ mean?
All maintained schools must meet the requirements set out in section 78 of the Education Act 2002 and promote the spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development of their pupils. Through ensuring pupils’ SMSC development, schools can also demonstrate they are actively promoting fundamental British values.
Meeting requirements for collective worship, establishing a strong school ethos supported by effective relationships throughout the school, and providing relevant activities beyond the classroom are all ways of ensuring pupils’ SMSC development.
Pupils must be encouraged to regard people of all faiths, races and cultures with respect and tolerance. It is expected that pupils should understand that while different people may hold different views about what is ‘right’ and ‘wrong’, all people living in England are subject to its law.
According to the DfE, ‘fundamental British values’ comprise of:
- the rule of law
- individual liberty
- mutual respect
- tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs, and for those without faith.