A Statement of British Values
Rye College is committed to serving its local national and international community. We recognise the multi-cultural, multi-faith and ever-changing landscape of the United Kingdom. We also understand the vital role we have in ensuring that groups or individuals within any environment are not subjected to intimidation or radicalisation by those wishing to unduly, or illegally, influence them. Our college fosters a strong sense of belonging both to our educational community and as a citizen of Britain with the responsibilities that citizenship brings.
The trust has an Equality Policy, 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. It seeks to serve all so that everyone feels a sense of belonging.
In response to the Department for Education’s guidance on promoting British values in schools, the college seeks to ensure young people leave us prepared for life in modern Britain and see themselves as members of society - treating others with respect and tolerance, regardless of background.
The ‘Prevent’ strategy sets out these values and all schools have a duty to ‘actively promote’ the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs together with a clear strategy for embedding these values.
Democracy is a vital part of the college’s day-to-day operations with students being able to voice their views and concerns through the Student Council. Students have the opportunity to elect their representatives and have first-hand experience of democracy. Students are kept appraised of any significant operational changes at the college and encouraged to express their views and participate in any discussion.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws that are applicable to college are regularly reinforced with students throughout the day. Primarily, these centre on behaviour which is regularly covered with students through assemblies, Life Education including Personal Social and Health Education (PSHE). Students are taught the value of, and reasons for, the laws that protect and govern us together with the consequences of breaking laws together with the need for restorative justice. External agencies such are the police are invited to support the work of the college in promoting the rule of law.
All students are actively encouraged to make choices at college knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. Students are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and make suitable choices. Teachers advise students how to do this in a safe way through the promotion of Online Safety, Life Education and PSHE. Students regularly make choices in terms of extracurricular activities.
The college’s ethos and values focus on the need for mutual respect and kindness towards all. The college’s Behaviour Management Policy supports this and it is reinforced on a regular basis in assemblies and the daily life of the college.
Tolerance of those of Different Faith and Beliefs
The college has a diverse student and staff body. It promotes not only tolerance but acceptance of people from different faiths and beliefs. This is achieved through enhancing students understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience diversity. Assemblies explore other beliefs and prejudices as well as tackling prejudice-based bullying. Other faiths and beliefs are explored through the college’s religious education curriculum. The college celebrates the language and cultures represented within the diverse student body. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning.