We had a meeting of four staff on Friday afternoon to talk about the profile of our RRS (rights Respecting Schools) work, and whether it being embedded and internalised was enough – we considered whether it didn’t need to have an openly overt presence and voice – so that we constantly proclaim what we are about and why we do what we do.

The risk, we felt, of just being this way – of having RRS ingrained but not specifically spoken about – is that we are only hoping that the intentions come across through modelling and treating others well (and first).

We decided that we do need to return to making things far more explicit.

  • We had started putting the relevant Article on every document, but had stopped doing this.
  • We had been having weekly Assemblies based on Articles, but have stopped doing this.
  • We had ensured a lesson each week in each class, but the summer term’s events put paid to much of that.
  • When we organised or participated in certain events we promoted the RRS scheme through them, but such things have not taken place so much.

We will return to our former position, of stating the rationale more clearly, through staff training and all the things above.

So Monday’s Assembly, ostensibly about The Lost Sheep (but actually about respecting play equipment given freely), will promote Article 31, the right to play.

Our activities to support Children in Need (13th November, the second Friday after half term holiday) will support Article 24, he right to inclusive education

Our immediate provision of remote learning for any isolating groups will also promote Article 29 – the right to a high quality education.

Removing the (condemned) ‘Parent Shelter’ from the top playground, will help keep children safe from harm (Article 19 – the right to be protected for injury).

SEND review meetings over two weeks will make sure that children can enjoy Article 29, and the right to an education that develops them to their individual potential.

Our constant insistence over Covid-19 safety measures will provide for Article 24, and the right to the best possible health standards and protection.

Getting School Council restarted quickly will provide for the right to voice opinion and to be listened to seriously and sincerely (Article 12).

Altering staffing to increase our pastoral capacity will ensure we can provide for children’s rights under Article 39 – recovery (physical or psychological) in an environment that fosters the health, self-respect and dignity of the child after lock-down or as another result of coronavirus.

Introducing an additional agreement with parents whose children are part of an isolating ‘bubble’ about online learning and appropriate behaviour expectations will protect children’s rights in Article 16, and parents’ responsibility in Article 18, so that we use it well and respectfully.

The over-arching intention is to have the child at the core of what we do – their needs, their best interests, their rights.

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