Our Learning Ethos
At Harris Academy Beckenham, we are determined to meet the demand from parents in this part of the borough for secondary education with energy, drive and ambition.
This means our Academy will have:
- A personal best culture in which parents are confident their son or daughter is being fully stretched and developed
- Emphasis on the traditional values of good manners, strong discipline and smart uniform – as well as the best of modern teaching methods and technology
- Teaching that is consistently good and outstanding
- An Academy that nurtures strong interpersonal skills and the aspiration to be successful
- The support and structures to inspire the best in every student, whether they need to be stretched, are struggling, or are somewhere in the middle
- An admissions system that welcomes students of every academic ability
- A culture of involving parents fully with their children’s education and school life in general
- A smart, neat and affordable Academy uniform
- Students and staff that become established as trusted and reliable faces in the local community
- Active support from the Harris Federation, a charity with a clear track record in developing outstanding schools
There is a House System with every student being assigned to a House on their first day at the Academy. There will be healthy competition between Houses though sport, academic achievement and positive contributions to Academy life. This structure promotes a sense of belonging and a spirit of fun within each student’s education.
Academy statement of British values
At Harris Academy Beckenham we take very seriously our responsibility to prepare students for life in modern Britain. We ensure that the fundamental British Values are introduced, discussed and lived out through the ethos and work of the Academy.
All curriculum areas provide a vehicle for developing a comprehensive understanding of these concepts and, in particular, our Tutor and Assemblies Programme, Innovation days and RE curriculum provide excellent opportunities to deepen and develop appreciation of these core values. Students embrace these concepts with enthusiasm and demonstrate a good understanding of their application to their own lives.
Our Academy makes considerable efforts to ensure students have exposure to a wide experience beyond their local community during which these concepts are shown, through for example, Harris Experience, Student Commission, sporting events, a range of visits and use of outdoor education centres. We also foster and promote a culture and ethos of tolerance and understanding which gives students an excellent platform for embracing difference.’
We have our own Student Council made of up of elected form representatives, Year 13 Prefects, a Senior Student Leadership Team who lead our Senior Prefects as well as elected Head Boy, Head Girl, Deputy Head Girl and Deputy Head Boy. Students are taught about the importance of democracy in a variety of ways including tutor time, assemblies and in subject specific content.
The rule of law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the Academy or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout all aspects of life at HABE. Students are taught the value and reasons behind our rules, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. We have visits and talks about the rule of law from the Community Police Officer/SaferSchools team.
Students are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. We educate and provide boundaries for students to make choices safely, through provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Students are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our e-Safety and tutorial sessions. Whether it be through choice of learning challenge, for example, or participation in our extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, our students are given the freedom to make choices.
Mutual respect and tolerance
Harris Academy Beckenham is situated in an area which is culturally diverse and our Academy community reflect this diversity. We place a considerable emphasis on promoting diversity within the student and staff body. Our Religion & PSHE lessons, Character Development Days, assemblies and tutor time sessions reinforce this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes, just as our students and staff are able to share their cultural heritage and experiences.
Within the wider curriculum and its delivery, we expect all students irrespective of gender, ethnic origin or beliefs to:
- Take part in PE, art, music, dance and drama lessons
- Participate in wider activities and discussions, for example during tutorial time, that uphold British values
- Show tolerance of different faiths and beliefs, including Christianity.
Female students in all years can be taught by a male PE teacher.
Radicalisation and extremism
The Academy believes and actively supports the view that all students should be protected from radicalisation and extremism. Our approach to this is in line with the Government’s CONTEST strategy (the counter terrorist strategy) and PREVENT (stopping people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism).
Radicalisation is the process by which people come to support terrorism and extremism, and in some, cases participate in terrorist groups. Extremism is the vocal or active opposition to the fundamental British values.
Our 100% commitment to safeguarding student welfare means we are vigilant to monitoring vulnerability to radicalisation including:
- Family tensions
- Sense of isolation
- Distance from cultural heritage
- Experience of racism or discrimination
- Feeling of failure
Any concerns must be reported to the Designated Safeguarding Officers.
A cross-curricular approach
We deliver a cross curricular approach to the delivery of SMSC/PSHE including British Values. This is done via:
- current affairs, including weekly tutorial discussion sessions centred on a topic in the news, such as extremism
- assemblies – once a week and centred on a theme that links to British Values, for example, Human Rights and Freedom
- the Academy – Character Development Days that encourage the exploration and application of British Values and being a British citizen
- student leadership – actively voting in Academy elections to elect posts of responsibility
- Religion & PSHE lessons – predominantly Christian but exploring beliefs and values of other faiths including multicultural celebrations
- and in subjects where we map how other subjects deliver knowledge and understanding of key concepts that link to British Values.