Values Education -developing positive attitudes

  • Values Education -developing positive attitudes – a short booklet for teachers

‘Values Education – developing positive attitudes’ is a short booklet written in 2004 primarily intended for a teacher audience describing, and evaluating, the introduction of ‘Values Education’ in nine primary schools in five different areas of England. Values Education is an approach pioneered at West Kidlington Primary School in Oxfordshire from the mid-1990s, and subsequently adopted and adapted in other primary schools in Oxfordshire and other LEAs. This approach to moral and social education is based on a list of universal values – concentrating on one each month over a two year cycle – introduced in assembly but permeating all aspects of school life, including specific lessons and responses to children good and bad behaviour. Central to this is that all adults model the values, so that children see these in action, leading to implicit learning, along with the explicit learning that comes from discussion of what the values mean and how they can be lived out in practice. Significant improvements in relationships, in behaviour and in the learning environment were noted in all the schools, but it was noted that schools tended to focus on those aspects most important in their own context. While this approach has much to commend it, it is argued that it needs staff to see that there is ‘something missing’ rather than have such an approach imposed.

The booklet was published by the National Primary Trust in 2004. Multiple copies are still available for no cost. The best way to get hold of one or more copies is to contact Tony Eaude on who would also be interested to receive any feedback on the issues raised.

The new course New Perspectives … on values draws on the expertise and insight gathered by Tony Eaude’s involvement in evaluating Values Education. He is a trainer working with the Values Education Trust.