Our Vision and Values
St Mark's Church of England Primary School's Vision
'Together in God's love, we will shine'
We will provide a secure and happy learning environment where everyone is valued and demonstrates our core values of respect and kindness.
In partnership with the home, the Church and our local community, we will foster a lifelong love of learning.
We will become thoughtful, responsible citizens in the Global community promoting the value of understanding in all its forms.
We believe that every child is an individual with equal rights to our care, time and attention and we will nurture and support each other on our journey of discovery, knowledge and faith guided by God’s love.
We will create an environment in which everyone learns that he/she is made in the image of God.
We will develop honest and thriving independent learners with high self-esteem and a strong ethos of perseverance.
We will encourage a natural curiosity and excitement for learning through our curriculum and with creative, challenging and personalised teaching and learning, each child WILL achieve.
The whole school community has worked on deciding what our core values should be and we believe these underpin all the work we do with children and adults at St Mark's.
Our Vision is based on Matthew 5 v14-16:
You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colours in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.
Since September 2014 schools have been required to demonstrate how they actively promote and embed British values in particular, as well as challenging values and ideas contrary to fundamental British values. We believe that Christian values and British values are not mutually exclusive. We promote the British values through all areas of our school and they are explicitly discussed in Collective Worship and children contribute to a display in the hall each week considering these and the school values.
The recognition that all people are to be equally valued regardless of beliefs, background or ethnic origin is reflected in the school’s Equality Policy and rooted in the school’s Vision Statement and aims.
The school actively promotes British values in many ways, including:
Class contracts and school rules are agreed by the children at the beginning of the school year
Pupil voice where children discuss issues in their house colours; – a fairly elected School Council, which listens to the views of pupils, promotes a democratic process, freedom of speech and group action; and through the elected Worship committee.
Study of history and geography
Seeking pupils’ views and feedback in-class activities and across the curriculum
Rule of Law
Consistently applied school rules and expectations for the common good
Clear policies and procedures in place to tackle behaviour and attitudes which are contrary to the school’s moral code and expectations
RE – helping children distinguish between right and wrong, as well as the importance of honesty, forgiveness and reparation
RHSE – including people who work in our community, circle time and other opportunities to discuss feelings, emotions and behaviour
PE – following and developing rules; the importance of fair play; celebrating with grace and being magnanimous in defeat (sportsmanship)
Rewarding good behaviour, sportsmanship and being community-spirited
Visits from PCSO, local magistrates and other community authority figures
Supporting pupils in developing self-knowledge, self-esteem and self-confidence
Ensuring children understand they have rights and responsibilities – eg through UNICEF rights respecting schools; Behaviour for Learning Policy, Peer Mediation work, School Council.
Encouragement of pupil participation and inclusiveness in all aspects of school life, including extra-curricular activities
Anti-bullying policy and practice
Development of speaking and listening skills, including debating skills, for example, through drama, pupil voice and committees
Encouraging children to make choices and keep safe
Mutual Respect and Tolerance
RE and Collective Worship
Study of other faiths in RE, including visits to other places of worship and visits from representatives of other faith traditions
Links with our Ugandan Partner School
Multicultural events and celebrations,
Special assemblies and liturgies that promote reflection on tolerance and respect, such as Remembrance, Anti-Bullying, Just Different.
Active support of charities, both in Britain and overseas, develops the children’s appreciation and respect for the differences and inequalities in the world and of all the things that we share as human beings, for example the need for food, shelter, security and love. (Children in Need; Rotary Club Boxes; Christingle; Poppy Day; St Catherine’s Hospice; British Heart Foundation)
We also enjoy marking and celebrating events of special national and international significance, such as Remembrance Day, London 2012, The World Cup, Bonfire Night, The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, St George’s Day (and other saints), the General Election and Tim Peake’s Journey into Space