Aims, Ethos and Equality
Brent Knoll School – our vision statement
Brent Knoll is a specialist school for children with autism. In addition there is provision for children with social, communication and interaction difficulties who do not have a clinical diagnosis of autism but who would benefit from the strategies and interventions employed in meeting the needs of children with autism.
We are a learning community. We will be responsive to the needs of all our pupils and staff in a caring and friendly atmosphere, where quality and excellence in all things is encouraged and acknowledged.
Every pupil will have access to a well-balanced and broad curriculum. Study will centre on well-planned learning activities that build on pupils’ previous knowledge and experience and meet the individual needs of each child. Transition between Key Stages will be well planned and effective. All staff will recognise the particular difficulties experienced by young people with autism in communication, flexibility of thought and social interaction.
The children will know what is expected of them and they will be supported in understanding the relevance of their learning tasks. The children will have the opportunity to be involved in planning and evaluating their own learning. They will experience independent and collaborative work.
Teachers will provide stimulating learning opportunities including first-hand experiences and open-ended tasks. A variety of teaching methods will be used. Teachers will recognise that individual pupils learn in different ways and will prepare activities that allow pupils to access learning whatever their individual learning style. Teachers will ensure that children have access to well organised learning resources and quality materials and tools. Classrooms and shared areas will be well managed and tidy. The pupils’ work will be thoughtfully presented and there will be stimulating and attractive displays in classrooms and work areas.
There will be a welcoming, calm and purposeful atmosphere within the school. The pupils’ attitude to their work will demonstrate a high level of self-motivation and independent learning skills. The pupils will find their education challenging, rewarding and interesting. They will have opportunities to extend tasks and pursue individual lines of enquiry. Academic and personal achievement will be celebrated in a variety of ways. Everyone involved in the school will have a shared purpose and pride in the school.
We will ensure that pupils have opportunities to develop positive, responsible and caring attitudes alongside personal, social and learning skills. There will be high expectations of achievement and social behaviour with agreed principles between staff and pupils. We will encourage self-confidence; self respect and respect for others. Opinions will be valued.
Parents will be encouraged to be closely involved with school life as a whole and with the learning development of their own children. Teachers and parents will work together for the benefit of the children and will be supportive of each other.
Every member of staff will work as part of a team and will be actively involved in the all aspects of school life. The Head Teacher will recognise and value the skills and opinions of individuals. Continuous professional development will be encouraged and supported. There will be a consistent and shared understanding of the needs of young people with autism. The school Governors will be supportive and aware of the needs and development of the school and of it’s staff.
It will be the responsibility of the whole school community to realise this vision.
Brent Knoll School is committed to serving its community It recognizes the multicultural, multi faith and ever-changing nature of the United Kingdom, and therefore those it serves. It also understands the vital role it has in ensuring that groups or individuals within the school are not subjected to intimidation or radicalisation by those wishing to unduly, or illegally, influence them.
The school as a Cooperative Trust accepts admissions from all those entitled to an education under the SEND Code of Practice, including pupils of all faiths or none. It follows the policies outlined by its governing body regarding equal opportunities, which guarantee that there will be no discrimination against any individual or group, regardless of faith, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, political or financial status, or similar. It seeks to serve all.
The Government emphasises that schools are required to ensure that key ‘British Values’ are taught in all UK schools. The government set out its definition of British values in the ‘Prevent Strategy’ – values of:
- the rule of law
- individual liberty
- mutual respect
- tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
Should you feel that the school is not meeting this requirement, you should contact the school office and request to express your concerns with the Headteacher. Likewise, if you feel that anyone working at the school is, intentionally or otherwise undermining these values, you should report this to the Headteacher. The school does, though a wide range of activities, secure such standards and uses strategies within the International Primary and Middle Years Curricula and the National Curriculum to secure such outcomes for chilldren.
Democracy is a key cooperative value promoted throughout the school. Pupils have the opportunity to have their voices heard through our Pupil Council and Pupil questionnaires. There is a pupil representative on the Cooperative Trust forum. Pupils also participate in the election of the Young Mayor of Lewisham and vote in the democratic process. This year one of our Year 10 students was a candidate for the Young Mayor post.
The Rule of Law:
The importance of laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. Pupils 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. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service are regular parts of our calendar and help reinforce this message.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safety, through of provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advise how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons. Whether it be through choice of challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
Part of our school ethos and behaviour policy has revolved around core values such as ‘Respect’, and pupils have been part of discussions and assemblies related to what this means and how it is shown. Posters around the school promote respect for others and this is reiterated through our classroom and learning rules, as well as our behaviour policy and the school prayer.
Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs:
This is achieved through enhancing pupils understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to experience such diversity. Assemblies and discussions involving prejudices and prejudice-based bullying have been followed and supported by learning in RE and PSHE. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school. We hold an annual Multicultural Day which is a celebration of our diverse community.
A more detailed document on how Brent Knoll promotes fundamental British values can be seen by clicking on the link below;
We aim to ensure that all pupils achieve their maximum potential, academically, physically and socially. We work towards this aim by offering pupils a secure and stimulating environment in which mutual respect, friendliness and an understanding of individual need is evident between all members of the Brent Knoll community.
The staff are committed to working together with governors, parents and pupils to create a calm, peaceful learning environment, in which all pupils regardless of ability, race, gender or beliefs can maximise their potential. We recognise the need for all staff to be consistent in their approach towards encouraging good behaviour.
To view the school’s single equality policy please click on the link below;
We aim to:
- Enable all pupils to take responsibility for their own behaviour.
- Provide positive support for those with challenging behaviours.
- Treat all pupils with respect.
- Listen to pupils.
- Make pupils feel safe and welcome.
- Give pupils interesting and challenging work.
The school will take action to protect these rights. In order to ensure that these principles are upheld, we have a School Council. The Council meets once a month to discuss matters of concern to the pupils. The Headteacher chairs these meetings.
The school expects that pupils will:
- Be polite and respectful to adults and each other.
- Refrain from name-calling or comments that make others unhappy.
- Try their best in all lessons.
- Behave in an appropriate manner in class, around the school and on educational visits.
- Arrive at school and lessons on time and remain in class until they are told to leave.
- Not bring cigarettes, alcohol, illegal substances or weapons into school.
For a copy of our school behaviour policy please click on the link below.
On entry to the school all parents are asked to read, discuss and sign a home-school agreement.