Milner the dolphin
Our logo features a dolphin called Milner. Please click here to find out more from our history page.
Relationships are at the heart of our inclusive and welcoming school. We want all children to succeed socially, academically and emotionally, while having fun together.
We believe that:
Every child, every family and every moment matters.
Our school's ethos is built on the foundation of strong relationships: relationships between adults and children, relationships between children and children, and relationships between adults and adults. We build these relationships over time, continuously work on them to make them stronger and repair them when needed.
We do this because it not only maintains our welcoming and kind culture but also because we know that relationships are essential for settling all children to learn and, in cases where there have been adverse childhood experiences and trauma, they help children’s minds and bodies recover (Bomber, 2020; Felitti et al. 1998).
Too many schools withdraw relationships when times get tough. This leads to the escalation of challenging behaviour, rejection and isolation. For children, particularly those who have experienced trauma, this sense of rejection and isolation just makes situations worse. Instead, we work with families to build these relationships, actively choosing inclusion over exclusion, help over rejection and good health over toxic stress. The result of this approach is that we know our children and families incredibly well.
This ethos permeates through our school and can be seen in our positive behaviour and relationships policy. At Coombe Road Primary School we are extremely proud of our positive, inclusive approach and we actively promote outstanding behaviour at all times. The whole school community takes responsibility for fostering secure relationships and positive behaviour, and we consistently work together to achieve this end. We follow the restorative justice approach allowing children to express how they are feeling and share responsibility for making situations right. This reflects our vision and values, and the importance we place on working together.
We value evidence and research in our decision making, particularly:
- Louise Bomber (2020) Know me to teach me
- Stephen Porges (2011) The Polyvagal Theory: Neurophysiological Foundatons of Emotions, Attachment, Communication, and Self-Regulation
- Daniel J. Siegel(2020) The Developing Mind: How Relationships and the Brain Interact to Shape Who We Are
- Nadine Burke Harris (2020) Toxic Childhood Stress: The Legacy of Early Trauma and How to Heal
- Felitti, V. J., Anda, R. F., Nordenberg, D., Williamson, D. F., Spitz, A. M., Edwards, V., Koss, M. P., & Marks, J. S. (1998). Relationship of childhood abuse and household dysfunction to many of the leading causes of death in adults: The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 14(4), 245–258.
Developing our vision and values
We developed our vision and values in consultation with the whole school community. We had workshops with the school council, parents and carers, staff and governors. We also consulted every class in the school to capture the views of all the children. The result was a lot of post-it notes and brilliant ideas! It even led to use reviewing our whole geography curriculum to include local environmental issues and climate change.
The vision and values are fundamental to giving us a common purpose, culture and ethos. They guide our decision making and behaviours.
PROMOTING BRITISH VALUES
The Department for Education have reinforced the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to 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.”
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy, and these values were reiterated in 2014. At Coombe Road, these values are reflected throughout our PSHE teaching programme, and reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Each year, the children decide upon their class charter and the rights associated with these. All the children contribute to the drawing up of the charter.
Children have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. We have a School Council which meets regularly to discuss issues raised in class circle times/discussion. They are voted for by their class (two in each year group).
We also have a House System made up of four Houses: Brunswick (blue), Palmeira (red), Regency (green), Sussex (yellow). Each House is led by a captain and vice captain who help run House assemblies. Teachers award house points to children who are demonstrating our CORE values. House captains come and speak with us if they feel an individual deserves recognition.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. Children are taught the value and reasons behind laws - that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves, and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as our Community Policing team and the Fire Service help reinforce this message.
Within school, children are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for young children to make choices, through provision of a safe environment and empowering curriculum. Children are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons as well as in assemblies and circle times.
We use a restorative approach towards behaviour and children are given the choice to decide how they will restore a situation when they have not followed our CORE values. For example, a child who has had a conflict with a friend over the use of a scooter may choose to apologise to their friend, stay off the scooters for a day to show they are sorry, or do something for their friend to show that they are sorry (such as getting a scooter out for their friend the next day).
Mutual respect is at the heart of our CORE values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights as well as those of others and all members of the school community are encouraged to treat each other with respect.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs
Coombe Road celebrates the diversity of our community. Assemblies are regularly planned to address this issue either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures. Our RE, PSHE and SMSC teaching reinforce this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. Children visit places of worship that are important to different faiths.
At Coombe Road, all staff are trained on the Prevent Duty and we will actively challenge opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including extremist views.
A downloadable overview showing British Values throughout our PSHE teaching programme can be found below: