Towngate pupils

Our British Values and SMSC coordinator is Mrs A Berry.

In contrast to specific curriculum subjects, Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development (SMSC), relates to the whole life of our school. The spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of each child is recognised as being of fundamental importance for the education of all children by Governors, staff and parents of our school. It is taught not only through all subjects, in particular RE and PHSE, but also through the school ethos and collective worship. It supports all areas of learning and can contribute to the child’s motivation to learn. It is recognised that such development will be most successful when the values and attitudes promoted by the staff provide a model of behaviour for the children. In later years it can enrich the individual’s appreciation of life’s experiences and their relationships with others.
Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development (SMSC), is carried out within the context and spirit of the school’s vision. It supports and reinforces the aims and values of Towngate Primary Academy, appreciating all children equally and as individuals.

Our Values

At Towngate Primary Academy we strive to enable children to:

  • Feel safe, secure and happy.
  • Be confident, independent, enthusiastic and eager to learn.
  • Feel unique, have ambition and a belief in themselves.
  • Persevere,challenge themselves and know its ok to make mistakes.
  • Show respect, communicate and work with others.
  • Work hard to achieve their goals.
  • Investigate and ask questions.
  • Learn English, Mathematics and life skills.

Our School Rule: Be ready, be respectful and be safe.

Spiritual Development

Spiritual Development relates to the quest for individual identity and the search for meaning and purpose in our existence. It is associated with a dimension of life which is not necessarily experienced through the physical senses, but has much to do with feelings and emotions, and attitudes and beliefs. Spiritual development is not solely linked to a particular doctrine or faith and is therefore accessible to everyone. All areas of the curriculum should contribute to a pupils’ spiritual development.

Moral Development

Moral Development is concerned with fundamental decisions about how we should behave and act and the reasons for such behaviour and decisions. It relates to the child’s developing understanding of what is ‘right’, ‘wrong’ and ‘fair’. Moral development in school tries to build upon the child’s experience in the home, accepting that there might be different approaches between home and school.

Social Development

Social Development is concerned with the skills and personal qualities necessary for individuals to live and function effectively in society. In school we build on and support the functions of the home and wider community by helping to prepare our children to live in society.

Cultural Development

Cultural Development allows the child to recognise that all cultural groups are distinctive. Culture is the embodiment of shared beliefs, knowledge, customs and values of that group. The child needs to appreciate the distinctive features of their own culture and those of others. This will help children to answer the questions “Who am I?” and “Where do I fit in?”
The government set out their definition of British Values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy. These were reinforced by the DFE in September 2014.

At Towngate Primary Academy, children will encounter these values throughout everyday school life; in particular, our promotion of spiritual, moral, social and cultural through our curriculum, vision and values.

At Towngate Primary Academy we ensure that our children leave school prepared for life in modern Britain.


Our intention, at Towngate, is to raise the profile of SMSC; British Values and values based learning status within our school. We aim to ensure that all children have the opportunity to experience many ‘real life’ experiences whether that be onsite or out of school. We also want to ensure that Social, Moral, Spiritual, Cultural (SMSC) aspects of learning are at the heart of all teaching and not just in stand-alone lessons. By the end of primary school, we want all children to understand the importance of values based learning, SMSC and British Values and the impact it can have on life in and out of school. We ensure that our children are more experienced on how to deal with specific situations and make informed decisions in later life.


Children are taught a values based curriculum on a weekly basis in their classes and use picture news to explore the fundermental British Values. Themes are further explored and reinforced in whole school assemblies. Although SMSC and British Values are not taught as discrete lessons, the relevant skills are taught throughout PSHE and RE as well as the wider curriculum. Pupils select an Academy Council to lead various events throughout the year, linked to raising the profile of these aspects of learning. As part of the two-year rolling program, in RE, all key stages have clear links with British values and SMSC. Classes use weekly Picture News to discuss current events in the news and discuss British Values that it links to.


All children understand the importance of PSHE, RE, SMSC and British Values and the effects it can have on life in and out of school.

Termly, Holistic learning books are reviewed and evidence is collected to ensure children are receiving a full curriculum and are achieving SMSC and British Values understanding.

The Fundermental British Values are:

  • Democracy
  • Rule of law
  • Individual liberty
  • Mutual respect
  • Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
Being part of Britain

As a school we value and celebrate being part of Britain. In general terms, this means that we celebrate traditions and customs throughout the year; including, harvest festival, Remembrance Day, May Day, Easter services and Christmas celebrations! We also value and celebrate national, charity and sporting events.

Learning about being part of Britain is also part of our school curriculum. In Geography and History, we ensure that the children have a better understanding of what Britain is, learning more about:

  • capital cities and countries, rivers and mountains
  • the local area, specifically the trade background of the town
  • how ‘Great Britain’ differs from ‘England’ and ‘the United Kingdom’ where Britain is in relation to the rest of Europe and other countries in the world
  • British history, Monarchs, rulers and significant events that defined society

Children, parents and staff have many opportunities for their voices to be heard. Democracy is central to how we operate.

An obvious example is our school council. The election of the School Council members reflects our British electoral system and demonstrates democracy in action: candidates make speeches, pupils consider characteristics important for an elected representative, pupils vote in secret using ballot boxes etc. Made up of one representative from each class, the School Council meets regularly to discuss issues raised by the different classes. The council has its own budget and is able to genuinely effect change within the school; in the past, the School Council has planned charity events and raised money for playtime resources. The Council are actively involved in recruitment.

Other examples of ‘pupil voice’ are:

  • children agree their Class Charter and the rights associated with these; all children contribute to the drawing up of the charter
  • using Pupil Feedback forms, children are asked to respond and reflect on the teaching and learning
  • Pupils are always listened to by adults and are taught to listen carefully and with concern to each other, respecting the right of every individual to have their opinions and voices heard. We encourage pupils to take ownership of not only their school but also of their own learning and progress. This encourages a heightened sense of both personal and social responsibility and is demonstrated on a daily basis by our pupils.
The Rule of Law

The importance of rules and laws, whether they be those that govern our school or our country, are referred to and reinforced often, such as in assemblies and when reflecting on behaviour choices. At the start of the school year, each class discusses and sets its own ‘Class Charter’, a set of principles that are clearly understood by all and seen to be necessary to ensure that every class member is able to learn in a safe and ordered environment.

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. These values are reinforced in different ways:

  • visits from authorities such as the police and fire service
  • during Religious Education, when rules for particular faiths are thought about
  • during other school subjects, where there is respect and appreciation for different rules (in a sports lesson, for example).
Individual Liberty

Alongside rules and laws, we promote freedom of choice and the right to respectfully express views and beliefs. Through the provision of a safe, supportive environment and empowering education, we provide boundaries for our young pupils to make choices safely; for example:

  • choices about what learning challenge or activity
  • choices about how they record their learning
  • choices around the participation in extra-curricular activities.

Our pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are taught how to exercise these safely, such as in our e-safety lessons.

Mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs:

Our pupils know and understand that it is expected and imperative that respect is shown to everyone, whatever differences we may have, and to everything, whether it is a school resource, a religious belief or whatever. Children learn that their behaviour choices have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school and wider community should treat each other with respect.

This is also enhanced:

  • through Religious Education and other lessons where we might develop awareness and appreciation of other cultures
  • in English through fiction
  • in Art, Music and Cooking by considering culture from other parts of the world.

Picture News

As part of our values based curriculum, each week across school we look forward to our picture news. Picture news allows children across school to be aware of our wider world and acquire new skills of reflecting on things we might never have thought about or experience before. All children are encouraged to form their own opinions about each topic. We link these ideas closely with British Values and learn about life in modern Britain. Each week we are introduced to provoking, open-ended questions, linked to current events and British values to allow us to relate to the wider world around us. In the documents below you are able to see what children in KS1 and KS2 have been learning about.

“Picture News is interesting because we get to learn about different topics that are in the news and think about our opinions on them.” Oliver Y4

“We get to learn about how the world is a different place and celebrate everyone’s differences.” Isaac Y3

Please visit our twitter feed to see what we are learning across the school linking to SMSC; British Values; Values Based Education and PSHE: