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British Values 

The Department for Education has published guidance to schools on promoting British values to prepare young people for life in modern Britain. At Burnley High School we take this responsibility very seriously and we actively promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs.

These concepts are woven intrinsically throughout our curriculum and are explored in all subjects. In Religious Education, Personal Development, assemblies and form time, in particular, where students can deepen their understanding. We make great efforts to ensure our children are exposed to a wide range of experiences beyond their own community.

We do this through school visits to the theatre, residentials and abroad, such as, Berlin. This enables children to embrace difference and celebrate commonality between peoples alongside developing a pride in Britishness and a sense of belonging to our nation.


At Burnley High School we listen to the views of students, we do this through a variety of means including student voice, a thriving school leadership team and student council, they are elected by a pupil and staff vote. Students are encouraged to express clearly their viewpoint and listen to the views of others respectfully. Our student’s raise money for a chosen charity each term, they lead in all aspects of the school such as charitable appeals and fund raising.

Democracy is further enhanced throughout curriculum subjects for example as in:

History: students learn about the history of the magna carta, the first document to put into writing the principle that the king and his government was not above the law

Technology: students debate consumer choices (cost vs. ethics), they listen to and accept other peoples’ ideas

RE: students explore the importance of a democracy through the study of crime and punishment

PE: students work in teams through co-operation to nominate leaders via democracy

The rule of law

Burnley High School has the “BHS Way” which is a set of rules that promote the well-being and safety of individuals and the school as a whole. Each class reinforces the “BHS Way” and our school’s FMAILY ethos. The school has a positive behaviour policy that sets out rewards and sanctions. We encourage pupils to recognise rights and how these go hand in hand with responsibility.

The rule of law is further enhanced throughout curriculum subjects for example as in:

Food Technology: students identify food safety and hygiene laws including weights, measurements and legal age-appropriate purchases and safety around these items (i.e. knives). Students following safety rules and accept consequences if they are not followed

Science: students learn how scientific activities operate within a regulatory framework including cloning and embryological work is conducted within legal parameters

GCSE PE: throughout the year with sporting rules and regulations. Students explore contemporary Issues around spectator behaviour, such as, hooliganism

Personal Development – students are made aware of the law around the use of illegal drugs. Student know the law surrounding sexual harassment and sharing images online. They also explore the consequences of county lines and gang involvement. Students are informed about ASBO’s and the impact on the community and the individual

Individual liberty

We support students to make informed choices in a secure setting. Students develop self-respect and value themselves as individuals. Our school FAMILY ethos, and methods of teaching, develop student’s independence as well as other qualities such as perseverance and resilience. At Burnley High School our curriculum celebrates the memory of those who have struggled for liberty.

Individual liberty is further enhanced throughout curriculum subjects for example in:

History: students discover the quest for individual liberty within Nazi Germany and 20th Century America looking at how some people’s individual liberty was removed

Geography: students cover issues of religion and attitudes to birth control and relationships in China and Singapore with its effect on the population structure

Geography: students study the one and two child policy and the issues that arose from taking people individual liberty away

Personal Development: students’ study what freedom of speech is while respecting other people’s opinions

Mutual respect and tolerance

Mutual Respect is shown by all adults and students towards each other and towards our community. Our wide and broad curriculum supports this and helps children to articulate what respect means in practice. Students can talk about their own faith and beliefs as well as the faiths and beliefs of others. Through our diverse wide curriculum but in particular Religious Education, Personal Development, assemblies and form time, we deepen children’s understanding of faith and belief. We welcome visitors from our community, and we have two drop down days dedicated to “respect and equality and diversity” to enrich understanding of culture as well as an emphasis on tolerance.

Mutual respect is further enhanced throughout curriculum subjects for example in:

English: students analyse poetry from a wide range of different cultures

RE: students debate the big question “what justice is there in our world?”

Food Technology: students offer constructive criticism, create designs based on different cultures, accept ideas which are different from their own and create dishes from British culture. They research and understand religious and ethical diets

History: through the study of the Holocaust and slavery students gain an understanding of what happens when mutual respect doesn’t exist

Art: ensuring respect of other students’ artwork when it has been produced and is being peer assessed

Personal Development: Student study different cultures that exist in Britain and why mutual respect is needed in society. Students have respect for people of different races, religions, genders and sexual orientation

At Burnley High School we view these fundamental British values as universal moral beliefs that are commonly held across the world. We teach these through a distinct curriculum that recognises the unique culture of Britain. We successfully develop in our pupils a pride in being part of the British nation.

“I love BHS because it really does feel like a family. All staff and students know each other, are extremely supportive of one another and show amazing levels of respect throughout the school. There really isn’t another school like it!”

Miss Yates