Rights Respecting School
Rights Respecting School Award at City Academy Whitehawk
We are very lucky at City Academy Whitehawk that we get to work and learn in such a wonderful school. Our purposeful learning environment has not happened by accident, it has been built around our CAW qualities.
We have worked hard, over a number of years, to incorporate the ideals of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNHCR), which was held to ensure that every child can grow, learn, be safe, be listened to and be treated fairly.
The Convention has 54 articles that cover all aspects of a child’s life and set out the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights that all children everywhere are entitled to.
Below is a child friendly version showing the UNHCR Rights of the Child.
City Academy Whitehawk has become a Bronze Awarded UNHCR Rights Respecting School. The UNHCR is made known to children, young people and adults who use this shared understanding to work for improved child well-being, school improvement, global justice and sustainable living.
There are three strands which need to be addressed to become a Rights Respecting School. These include teaching and learning about rights, teaching and learning through rights and teaching and learning for rights. Our aim is to help children achieve their potential and be responsible citizens through these three strands. Being a Rights Respecting School helps children learn respect for themselves, others, critical thinking skills and informed democratic decision making. Children are taught to regard people of all faiths, races and cultures with respect and understanding. We would like children to be empowered to enjoy and exercise their rights and to promote the rights of others locally and globally. This ties in well with the CAW Qualities which are already embedded across the school and our vigorous PSHE curriculum. It is the duty of the children and the adults to collaborate and to ensure everyone’s rights and responsibilities are at the centre of CAW.
We would like our children to continue to develop their self-knowledge, self-esteem and self-confidence through the use of Rights Respecting School and supported by other provisions already in place in the school setting. We would like our children to be able to distinguish right from wrong and to create and respect Class, Playground and Whole School Charters. We encourage children to accept responsibility for their behaviour, show initiative and to understand how they can contribute positively to the lives of those living in our community and around the world. This might look different across all settings of the school (nursery, KS1 and KS2) but in all contexts, the Rights Respecting School values should be visible, understood and spoken about by adults.
Article 7, 8 and 28 are displayed in all classrooms across the school. They are displayed in child friendly language and include the use of pictures to support all children's understanding but are clearly based on particular articles from the Convention.
Every class across the school has a Class Charter. Each charter outlines what the children agree to do to ensure their rights are met and also what adults will do to ensure the rights are upheld for every child. All children and adults who work in the classroom should sign the charter in some way.
The charters are then referred to throughout the year and this helps to ensure that the children continually have their rights met.
Below are some examples of Class Charters from both KS1 and KS2.
At CAW, we have a Steering Group who work hard to help other children in the school learn all about their rights and the UNHCR Rights of the Child. Our Steering Group were selected from Years 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 following an application process. Last year, alongside the Steering Group, we collected data to gain a better understanding of how we were doing as a school relating to the following statements:
The Steering Group fed this back to their respective classes and pushed their peers to complete the forms to ensure all views were heard. Once the data was collected and analysed, the Steering Group explained the results to their classes and gathered ideas on how we could address their concerns.
Later in the year, we will be asking for more children to apply to become a part of our Steering Group. Be on the lookout on our Rights Respecting display for more information!
The staff and children of City Academy Whitehawk have achieved the bronze standard. Our staff and children are extremely enthusiastic about our successes and can't wait to continue our journey and achieve the silver award. Please read our Silver Action Plan for more information on our journey.