UNICEF and Rights Respecting

Colindale Primary School is committed to the UN Convention on the rights of the child, continually working to promote and protect children’s rights.

In June 2017, we were awarded the Recognition of Commitment by UNICEF. Since then, we have been working hard to prepare for the Silver Level assessment, led by our elected Rights Champions Committee and Steering Group.

The assessor came to visit our school in June 2019. She spent a very busy day speaking with children from all year groups, some parents and a range of staff members. We were so proud to be told that we had achieved the silver award at the end of the day and the banner now hangs proudly in the main entrance, along with the award certificate.

The assessor was impressed by what she saw and heard throughout the day. Below is a range of quotes from her final report:

“The School provides a range of pupil voice and leadership opportunities through RRS Champions, School Council, Eco Committee, Sports Superstars and Playground Pals.”

“Children in the focus groups and class visits showed a good knowledge of a range of articles and …. they explained how they learned about ’rights’ through assemblies, PHSE lessons and special events such as ‘Blue day.’

“A pupil suggested that ‘open lessons’ for parents should include a lesson on ‘rights’ in the future.

“The school has a strong inclusive agenda and adults report that children get on well with each other”

“Pupils in the focus groups felt safe at school and said: ‘adults make you feel secure’.”

Three separate strands were assessed:

Teaching and Learning about rights.

Teaching and Learning through rights – ethos and relationships.

Teaching and Learning for rights – participation, empowerment and action.

As with all forms of assessment, there were recommendations made, to consider as we prepare for our journey towards Gold level. We have created an action plan based around these points and this plan will be the focus of our RRS work over the next year.

Rights Champions

The first major action taken was the appointment of new Rights Respecting Champions. Elections were held on the 12th December, to coincide with the UK elections.

It was a very close-run thing but we now have a new team of pupils to help Colindale on the journey towards gold.

David – 1M

Zach – 2P

Isabelle – 3K

Danny – 4B

Christlyn – 5N

Hamed – 6N

I am looking forward to working with the new team and starting our journey towards gold.

What are Child Rights?

The United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) is a legally binding agreement followed by the majority of countries. It describes what children need to survive, grow up and develop their full potential.

All children everywhere in the world are entitled to the 45 articles contained in the convention.

The Convention also explains how adults and governments must work together to make sure all children enjoy all their rights.

What is a Rights Respecting School? (RRS)

We believe that a Rights Respecting School is one that provides opportunities to embed the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) in daily school life.

The rights of the child must be:

  • Taught
  • Practised
  • Promoted
  • Protected

At Colindale we do the above in a variety of ways; as part of PHSCE lessons, during assemblies and as part of fundraising initiatives. We try to ensure that the rights respecting agenda is promoted across the wider curriculum.

Modelling rights and respect is an important part of what we do at Colindale. Children can see rights in action as they interact with each other and with adults.

Impact of Rights Respecting education

By embedding the rights respecting agenda into school life, we are giving children the chance to become aware of what they need in order to lead happy, healthy lives and to become responsible and active citizens who may change society for the better. A huge part of this is to enable pupil voice and let children know that they can influence decision making processes across school.

We have seen a positive impact for the whole school community and know that this will improve further as the journey continues.

 

If you wish to find further information, please visit the UNICEF website: https://www.unicef.org/rights-respecting-schools OR contact Mrs McDonough, RRSA leader.

 

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