Ofsted defines British Values as:
- Rule of law;
- Individual liberty; and
- Mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs and for those without faith.
At MMK we actively embrace and encourage these values, which are enshrined in our ethos and vision. Indeed British Values continues to be one of the key pillars of all that happens within our school.
Here are just a few examples of specific activities and initiatives that demonstrate how we do that:
Agreed Behaviour Principles: MMK children have worked collaboratively through class discussions, our school council and a sharing of ideas in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 assemblies to reach a set of principles, agreed by staff, that underpin good learning in the classroom. Children aspire to ensure they have Middot (Good Characteristics), Melacha, (A strong work ethic) and Kavanah (Sincerity in all they do). They created behaviour rules for playground that they consulted on in their classroom which they delivered in assembly.
The School Council: The school council is democratically elected each term. Each class votes for two pupils to represent them at the school council, which then meets every two weeks basis with the Headteacher and one other teacher to discuss a range of topics that include ideas from their classmates. The Senior Leadership Team also suggests items to discuss. The school council’s views are sought on everything from safeguarding to curriculum initiatives, and it provides general important, and valid feedback on what is happening within the school community. To find out more about our School Council, please click here.
Parliament Visits: Years 5 and 6 visit The Houses of Parliament every other year. In addition we have visits from Lord Michael Levy, who is our school President and supports the children's understanding about what happens in the House of Lords.
Elections: In previous years the school has held mock elections to coincide with those taking place on the national stage. MMK elections are always lively, interesting and vibrant events, much like the national ones!! We have also had the pleasure of hosting a number of MPs who have come to visit us, including the school’s local MP and local councillors.
Charity Monitors and Charity Support: As part of our proud tradition of raising awareness of various good causes and important issues, as well as providing support to charities, Tzedakah/Charity and Chessed Monitors, from Year 6, in collaboration with staff, determine which charities the school will support. We choose new Tzedakah Monitors each term. A new charity is selected each term ensuring charities are chosen from Britain and around the world. We support Jewish, national and international charities.
Our Year 6 leavers take part in the MMK Make Their Mark initiative at the end of Year 6. Our pupils head into the centre of London supporting homeless people and charities, taking part in caring for elderly residents in our local care home and supporting younger pupils.
Each Friday at Kabbalat Shabbat, the Tzedakah monitors talk about the charity we are raising money for and we discuss the chosen charity in the school newsletter. In the summer term, Year 6 do a specific charity project in groups.
Visits with other Schools that are not defined as Jewish: Our children take part in a range of different activities such as debates with Courtlands and Fairways. We play interactive games with St Martins and build mutual respect for all races and religions.
Jewish Studies and British Values:
Throughout the entire Jewish Studies Curriculum, there are ample opportunities to discuss British Values and how they connect so intricately with Torah values. Please see some examples below.
Law: When learning about the rules of a Jewish Judge in Parashat Shoftim, the children are reminded that no one is above the law and that a judge in any society may not favour one party just because they are especially rich or particularly poor.
Democracy: Comparing the way that King Balak was elected to his position, to the manner in which Joseph was instantly promoted to Viceroy by Pharaoh is a great way for the children to begin to understand democracy.
Mutual Respect: In the story of Jonah, when the storm started, the verse states,
And the sailors were frightened, and each one cried out to his god...
This is a perfect opportunity to discuss the fact that there are lots of people in the world, many of whom have different beliefs or even no belief, and though we pray to our G-d and are taught the Torah, we must treat all other people with utmost respect and tolerance, (provided that they are not a danger to themselves or society).
Individual Liberty: Both boys and girls in Year 6 are encouraged to learn to recite the Friday Night Kiddush accurately and there are opportunities for both genders to be able to say this prayer in front of Key Stage 2.