Rights Respecting Schools
The Sir John Colfox School achieved the Gold UNICEF Rights Respecting School award in December 2020, becoming the first Secondary school in the Southwest. The award recognises a school where children’s rights are at the heart of the ethos and culture, to improve well-being and to develop every child’s talents and abilities to their full potential.
Unicef is the world’s leading organisation working for children and young people and their rights. In 1989, governments across the world agreed that all children have the same rights by adopting the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). Since 1991 the UK has ratified the CRC. These rights are based on what a child needs to survive, grow, participate and fulfil their potential.
The Sir John Colfox Academy students learn about their rights by putting them into practice every day. A Rights Respecting School models rights and respect in all its relationships. We have a team of Rights Respecting School Ambassadors from across the year groups who continue to promote rights within the school and the community.
Our Gold report showed that children’s rights are embedded across the school and underpin every facet of school life.
Strengths of the school include:
- Very confident and articulate students with a good understanding of rights.
- Learning about rights is prioritised and systematically embedded into personal development and wellbeing.
- Curriculum coverage of rights is strong.
- Students feel listened to, nurtured and supported by the school.
- Very effective links with the local community.
To help maintain our Gold status we need to:
- Continue building on the very effective practice evidenced.
- Continue to ensure the expertise of rights ambassadors is spread across school.
- Continue development of the curriculum including work on decolonisation and climate change.
- Work with students to develop meaningful global action.
The ambassadors are continually working on these points to help promote children's rights within school and the community. Below are the schools silver and gold reports from UNICEF.
Update March 2020
Chris Loder was invited by Student Ambassadors to visit Colfox last Friday to hear about the school's journey to being Rights-Respecting. Mr Loder met with the Headteacher and some staff before the meeting with students. They outlined how the school is aiming to put children rights at the heart of teaching and learning as the school strives to achieve UNICEF Gold accreditation.
The visit had been planned by Y10 student and UNICEF Youth Ambassador Eddie Rose who chaired a lively debate with Mr Loder and students on the importance of all children in the UK being taught the rights they hold under the United Nations Convention. As children better understand these rights, so they also understand how important it is to honour the rights of all others in the school, and globally through displaying respectful behaviour.
Mr Loder offered to organise an opportunity for students to visit the Houses of Parliament and meet with a wider group of MP's to explore the issue of children rights further.
After the meeting Eddie Rose stated 'It would be great if Mr Loder took away our messages that leading on child rights and UNICEF goals can allow the UK to lead the way globally and reaffirm our role as a compassionate, ambitious and outward-looking nation.'
Colfox is a partner with the Bridport Rights-Respecting Town project and is actively partnering with Bridport Primary School and Mountjoy school to support their Rights-Respecting School accreditation.