Citizenship gives pupils the knowledge, skills and understanding to play an effective role in society at local, national and international levels. It helps them to become informed, thoughtful and responsible citizens who are aware of their duties and rights. It promotes their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, making them more self-confident and responsible both in and beyond the classroom. It encourages pupils to play a helpful part in the life of their schools, neighbourhoods, communities and the wider world. It also teaches them about our economy and democratic institutions and values, encourage respect for different national, religious and ethnic identities, and develop pupils' ability to reflect on issues and take part in discussions.
At Durham Johnston we aim to provide a balanced delivery of Citizenship education so that it is relevant to pupils, connecting with their interests and experiences; encourages pupils to investigate and think critically about issues of current interest, using problem solving, reasoning and evaluation skills; relates to pupils' abilities and backgrounds; and provides pupils with opportunities to discuss and address real-life issues, and to see that they can participate in activities that make a difference in their schools and the wider community.
Citizenship is taught across the curriculum and through specific subject carriers such as RE, History, Geography and English. In addition, explicit Citizenship lessons are taught as part of the tutorial programme at both KS3 and KS4 and Citizenship events/activities are held throughout the year. Active Citizenship is an integral part of the Citizenship programme and pupils are given the opportunity to reflect upon their participation.
For the 2011-2012 academic year, the school and introducing themed citizenship/PSHE terms, where pupils will have assemblies, teaching and information provided to them on the termed theme. These are:
Term 1: Idenitity and diversity
Term 2: Careers
Term 3: Rights and responsibilities
Term 4: Healthy Lifestyles
Term 5: Deomcracy
Term 6: Financial Capability
We believe that pupils must have the opportunity to acquire knowledge to develop a respect for facts and the truth so they are able to understand their own values. Citizenship is about empowerment, relationships, rights and responsibilities. It is also about social systems, their structures and the forces of social change and developing an awareness of the right to equal treatment regardless of race, religion, gender or sexuality.
The following aims/objectives relate to Citizenship and naturally reflect the general aims of the School and the Every Child matters Agenda:
1. Aspects of key skills
2. Social and moral responsibility
3. Political literacy
4. Responsible community involvement
Citizenship aims to promote these strands through a series of programmes of study that provide opportunities to develop:
1. Knowledge and understanding about becoming an informed citizen: Requirements include that pupils should be taught about the legal and human rights and responsibilities underpinning society, the diversity of identities in the UK, the legal system, the nature of government, the importance of democratic processes, the role of the media, conflict resolution and the challenges of global interdependence and responsibility.
2. Skills of enquiry and communication: Requirements include that pupils should be taught to think about topical issues, problems and events, to express and justify opinions, and to contribute to discussions and debates.
3. Skills of participation and responsible action: Requirements include that pupils should be taught how to consider the experiences of others, to take part responsibly in activities and to reflect on the process of participation.