Molehill Primary Academy we understand that a child’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is at the heart of learning and growing. We aim to provide an education that is rich in opportunities to develop self-respect and respect for others, foster high standards of behaviour, nurture a respect and understanding of other social and religious customs and promote fundamental British values.
This refers to a child’s beliefs, religious or otherwise, which form their perspective of life and their respect for other people. It is shown through their sense of self-worth and uses imagination and creativity in their learning.
This refers to a child’s understanding of right and wrong, and their understanding of the consequences of their behaviour (positive and negative).
This refers to a child’s ability to work and engage with others from both their own community and with those from different backgrounds, religions and ethnicities, and to make a positive contribution to their community.
This refers to a pupil’s understanding and appreciation of their own values, customs and beliefs, and their willingness to respect and respond to cultural diversity.
View our SMSC policy here.
View our SMSC self-audit here.
Towards the end of Term 6, we were fortunate to have a visit from one of our local community churches who supports the promotion of reading within the school. However, we asked Mr Creasey to visit us wearing another hat – that of a community leader. We asked him to walk around our academy and tell us what he could see happening relating to promoting the values of SMSC.
We are very grateful to Mr Creasey for taking the time to visit and we were really proud to read the positive observations he had made about our academy. However, we don’t believe in standing still so have already made plans for tackling Mr Creasey’s final point about raising the visual profile of our core values. We plan to post photos of the resulting displays early in September. Following that, we plan to invite Mr Creasey on a return visit to see if he can spot the improvements!
Here are Mr Creasey’s observations:
Review of SMSC in Molehill Primary Academy
by David Creasey, Elder/ Trustee, The Vine, Maidstone
21 July 2015
Many thanks for taking me on a journey through Molehill last week. I hugely enjoyed the experience and gained a greater insight into the range of educational provision that the school offers to a diverse group of children, some of whom clearly have challenging issues to face in their young lives. I make the following comments in terms of a first impression visit.
I think I said to you at the time that this for me is core to any work that we want to undertake with anyone whether they be adults or children. I observed real relationships in action. From Mrs Brooker dealing with children who had been disciplined – with great respect but getting key messages across to another child knocking on her door asking if he could have his lunch with her. This would seem to be the norm and is a great example of leaders leading and outworking what they are trying to motivate others to do. Making time for people builds trust and confidence and demonstrates care beyond just the mechanics of a necessary relationship.
I observed relationships across the school working well with each class visit that we made. Teachers clearly engaged with their children listening and responding to them; challenging behaviours but reinforcing praise and effort that were being made. I observed children who seemed, at least on my visit, to be engaged with the subject matter in each class we went into. All of this was underpinned by relationships that seemed firmly established. Relationships are a key foundational block to building anything and from my limited observation I would say that block is firmly and solidly in place – I guess it starts again in Sept.
Communication / Confidence
Alongside relationship is communication and it was clear that again this is core at Molehill, both in terms of oral communication and the use of written communication. I encountered confident children who when asked by yourself a question were able to communicate how they felt and what they thought about the question posed. They gave great accounts of how they would respond if they felt unsure about something in the school and clearly were all able to identify people they would go to for help – again relationships firmly established.
Praise and Resilience
I observed praise and encouragement in each class that we entered. Children were being encouraged to be creative, express ideas and explore options before making choices. This was evident in one class where they were exploring how to construct a model with pieces of cardboard and other materials. I observed clear praise – in one class a child was encouraged to apologise to another and after doing so was in turn encouraged and praised by his teacher for taking that step. The other child who received the apology was in turn praised for accepting this.
I was greatly impressed with the feel of the building and its surrounding grounds. There seemed to be a good use of all available space and clearly defined equipment for those with particular needs, although one boy in a wheelchair did struggle a little to open a pair of swing doors before being assisted. The outside space and the equipment was plentiful with defined areas. The sports field and copse are an added bonus and clearly get good use. I have visited other schools and they have less available space and/or equipment. The building felt to me light and airy and not cramped.
Core vision and values
Whilst I have concentrated on the positive, I would make one comment just on reinforcing the vision and values the school is seeking to promote (and forgive me if I have missed the obvious). I printed off the core vision and values from the website. I clearly saw a reinforcement of this throughout my visit in an oral sense but may have missed how this was being communicated in other ways such as physical display on notice boards or other display media.
The Vision and Values are also quite long – my question would be is there a simple motto that the school has that could be used to help in reinforcing what I generally observed?
There was great “buzz” about the school – maybe a result of the end of term coming – but I just was left with the impression that the children I saw enjoyed being there. I also got that impression from the staff we met along the way. I know that the school faces many challenges and the context of very needy and often complex and distressing family situations. I observed a school that is educating and building confidence in the lives of young people – who for some, this will be the only place they receive the most precious of things – time and attention, care and support.
I’m not just being kind too you, if I thought something was wide of the mark I would say so – but I do believe in looking for the good and excellent before we could talk through anything that needs further attention. I hope this was helpful to you and I would be very happy to assist further if you thought that useful.
Thanks again for taking the time to show me round.
The Vine Maidstone
Charity No. 1152659
Company No. 8476230
Tel 01622 661560
“My child really enjoyed this Play and Stay and so did I as a parent. Nothing to improve – really pleased!”
Yr R Parent
Thanks for inviting me to do a story session with your school. I found the whole experience very rewarding as both children, and teachers were open to engage with me, and participated in listening to the stories, dressing up, singing and dancing.
Genny Jones (Confidence Queen)
“The behaviour of the Year 5 children was a credit to the school when we were out on the road.”
Mick Jeffries, Invicta Cycle Training
At the end of every lesson I know a bit more than before.Year 6 pupil
I can’t wait to come back and work with the children and staff in the future. During every session the children were exceptional and a real credit to the school.Chris Cook, Olympic Swimmer
I am very impressed with the wonderful work being undertaken at Molehill.Louisa Felstead, Business Partnerships Manager