Conference held to discuss pupils’ cultural education

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A CONFERENCE is taking place in Bradford tomorrow exploring how schools should promote pupils’ social, moral and cultural development in light of the Government’s call for all children to be taught essential British values.

The event will also look at what Ofsted is looking to see from schools in this area.

It has been organised by a national education charity which had started as a schools project in Bradford in 2001 in the aftermath of race riots in the city.

The Schools Linking Network aims to bring children from different backgrounds together to better understand each other.

This started with schools serving predominantly white and Asian communities in Bradford but the same approach has since been used in different settings as it was rolled out nationally in 2007. This was initially with Government funding but it now works as a charity.

Meg Henry, the charity’s senior advisor, told The Yorkshire Post that pupils’ social, moral and cultural development should be seen as an essential part of what schools do.

She added: “It should not been seen as something separate from pupils’ academic studies as one links to the other. This conference is an opportunity to consider strategic and outstanding practice in both promoting high standards of achievement and developing broader human qualities in young people. Young people need to be equipped with skills, attitudes, values and capabilities that are necessary to succeed in the modern world.”

The event takes place tomorrow with around 150 delegates at Bradford City football club’s Valley Parade ground.

At last month’s Conservative Party conference, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan said all children, should: “not only learn how to read, write and add up, but also how to be good and valuable citizens”. She added: “Fundamental British values ... democracy, the rule of law, liberty, respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs are non-negotiable and part of a secure future for Britain.”

Her comments follow the Trojan Horse scandal in Birmingham where investigations found there had been attempts by a group of people to influence schools with an Islamic agenda.