SMSC and British Values

Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC) Development  and how this links to British Values is the over-arching umbrella that encompasses personal development across our whole curriculum.

Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC)

Spiritual: The opportunity to explore beliefs, experience and faithsfeelings and values; enjoy learning about oneself, others and the surrounding world; use imagination and creativity and reflect on experiences.

Moral: The opportunity to learn what is right and wrong and respect the law; understand consequences; investigate moral and ethical issues and offer reasoned views.

Social: The opportunity to use a range of social skills to participate in the local community and beyond; appreciate diverse viewpointsparticipate, volunteer and cooperate; resolve conflict.

Cultural: The opportunity to explore and appreciate cultural influencesappreciate the role of Britain’s parliamentary system; participate in cultural opportunities; understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity.

British Values

Democracy: making decisions together, for example giving opportunities to develop enquiring minds in an atmosphere where questions are valued.

Rule of law: understanding rules matter as cited in Personal Social and Emotional development for example collaborating with children to create rules and codes of behaviour.

Individual liberty: freedom for all, for example reflecting on their differences and understanding we are free to have different opinions

Mutual respect and tolerance: treat others as you want to be treated, for example sharing and respecting other’s opinions.



The Department for Education states that there is a 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 Department for Education defines British Values as follows:

  •        Respect for democracy and support or participation in the democratic process                       
  •        Respect for the basis on which the law is made and applies in England
  •        Support for equality of opportunity for all
  •        Support and respect for the liberties of all within the law
  •        Respect for and tolerance of different faiths and religious and other beliefs

Ofsted 2019 states: There is a requirement on us as a school to, “prepare learners for life in modern Britain by equipping them to be responsible, respectful, active citizens who contribute positively to society; developing their understanding of fundamental British values; developing their understanding and appreciation of diversity; celebrating what we have in common and promoting respect for the different protected characteristics as defined in law.” These protected characteristics are defined in the Equalities Act, 2010.

We ensure that the fundamental British Values are introduced, discussed and lived out through the ethos and work of the school. All curriculum areas provide a vehicle for furthering understanding of these concepts and provide opportunities to deepen and develop understanding. We encourage our children to be creative, unique, open-minded and independent individuals, respectful of themselves and of others in our school, our local community and the wider world. We aim to nurture our children on their journey through life so they can grow into safe, caring, democratic, responsible and tolerant adults who make a positive difference to British Society and to the world.

Through our curriculum offer we teach Cultural Competence.  Education in Cultural Competence is about learning to live positively in our diverse world. It is about deepening our knowledge and understanding of others and developing an increasing ability to empathise with those who are different from us; to recognise our common humanity. It is about celebrating diversity for the ways in which it enriches our lives. We aim to help children develop a positive self-identity, that incorporates understanding and respect for people with different characteristics. We also teach children about lines of inequality and discrimination in our society, help pupils learn about the mechanisms through which inequality and discrimination work and engage them in thinking about how to build a fairer, better world.