What is a Rights Respecting School?
The Rights Respecting Schools Award (RRSA) recognises achievement in putting the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) at the heart of a school’s planning, policies, practice and ethos. The award is given to schools by UNICEF, a leading organisation for children and their rights. The UNICEF UK Rights Respecting School’s Award (RRSA) is based on principles of equality, dignity, respect, non-discrimination and participation.
A rights-respecting school not only teaches about children’s rights, but also models rights and respect in all relationships. The ‘Rights Respecting School Award’ (RRSA) helps our children grow into thoughtful, respectful and responsible young citizens within school, the wider community and the world. By learning about their rights, our children also learn about the importance of respecting the rights of others. A rights-respecting school is a community where children’s rights are learned, taught, practised, respected, protected and promoted. Young people and the school community learn about children’s rights by putting them into practice every day.
Rights Respecting at Dene House Primary School
Teaching and learning seizes opportunities to discuss and reflect on the articles of the convention wherever possible. At Dene House Primary School our Curriculum Intent, our Ethos and Values and our PRIDE philosophy are all underpinned by the core principals of the UNCRC which are:
Article 2 – Non-Discrimination
Article 3 – Best interests of the Child
Article 6 – Life, Survival and Development
Article 12 – Participation
Where are we now?
On our first accreditation we achieved the Rights Respecting Silver Rights Aware Award. We are proud to say that we are continuing this journey as we aspire to achieve the ‘Gold Rights Respecting Award’.
In order to promote, practice and protect children’s rights within school pupils and staff work collaboratively on a number of charters, which clearly define the roles of duty bearers and rights holders within our school community (see below). These charters are displayed in each class:
Our School Charter
Our Lunchtime Charter
Our Playground Charter
Our school has a mascot that is synonymous with children’s rights. All classes participated in the design and our School Council decided the final mascot ought to be the Rights Respecting Ranger. You will find it on the UNCRC articles around our school – be sure to look out for it when you come to visit.
We have a weekly assembly dedicated to celebrating children’s rights. Each class nominates a class member, who they feel has been respectful of children’s rights and they receive a special certificate linked to our Article of the Week
Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child states that: ‘All children have the right to give their opinion, and for adults to listen and take it seriously’.
At Dene House Primary School we feel it is important for our pupils to feel empowered to express their opinions and make informed decisions. School Council is just one of the ways our school enables the children to do this.
Parliament Week provides our children with an ideal opportunity not only to explore British Values linked to democracy but to put Article 12 into practice. We carry out a mini-election whereby each class elects a representative to be their school councillor. Once elected, the councillors remain in their position for a year. They attend regular meetings where they have an opportunity to express their views and represent the views of others, reflect critically and make informed decisions.
This role is advertised and then children apply for the position. The School Council select the successful candidates.
These pupils are part of our School Council and they ensure that children’s rights are represented and met within School.
Meet some of our School Councillors and Rights Ambassadors
We are proud to promote a Rights Respecting Ethos throughout our school, where the children are at the heart of everything we do. If you would like further information regarding Rights Respecting, please contact our Rights Respecting Champion: Miss K Dodds