SMSC is an essential element of British schooling. As well as academic success, all students must receive a holistic “spiritual, moral, social and cultural” education. Please scroll to the bottom of this page for the UK government’s SMSC standards.

How does Newbury Hall promote students’ SMSC development?


  • Every week, all Newbury Hall students sit a writing test. However, during student inductions at the start of the year the weekly writing test involves a discussion of the school ethos of “Gusto, Grit & Growth” and an essay writing task to discuss whether these are the three most important qualities in life.
  • A dedicated SMSC coordinator has been appointed for 2016-2017 to collate evidence, audit, and improve provision.
  • All students receive lessons in “Personal Values & Careers”, and “Citizenship, Law & FBV”. These are our course titles for PSHE provision.
  • Please see the PLACES section of our website for the extensive range of extracurricular activities we offer.
  • Traditional British food such as bangers & mash, toad in the hole, etc often come with descriptions, history, etc to help our students appreciate the tradition.

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  • Our students take an IGCSE exam in English as a second language. According to the specification, it covers “Spiritual, moral, ethical, social, legislative, economic and cultural issues. The study of English as a Second Language demands from candidates an understanding of the cultural contexts from which spring the many forms and varieties of the English language. In undertaking a course in English as a Second Language, candidates are likely to extend their linguistic knowledge and ability and widen their appreciation of social and cultural issues. The study of a range of texts may raise spiritual, moral, ethical and social issues and help develop candidates’ awareness of other cultures.”
  • A Student Council operates to give students a voice in school decisions (democracy).
  • Regular Student Surveys also add to student voice.
  • At Breakfast News & Monday Morning Assembly, students first read their choice of the week’s global and local news and then share their reading with the rest of the school through informal presentations and discussion. We also announce a few examples of students’ ‘good’ and ‘bad’ behaviour from the previous week.
  • Students at IGCSE level take a course in World Belief Systems which roughly follows the content of the Cambridge Religious Studies IGCSE but with a focus on discussion and comparison of beliefs around the world. Students are encouraged to share and learn to respect their own and others’ beliefs, if any.
  • Students’ English language provision has been overhauled. The curriculum now operates around the core principles of:
    • Social & Cultural Fluency
    • Subject Literacy
    • Autonomous Learning
    • English is learnt through subjects which can include, especially for short-stay students on intensive ENglish programmes:
      • Weekly Whole-school Debate
      • Ethical Issues
      • Intercultural Comparisons
      • Critical Media
      • Art & Its Appreciation
      • Essays & Argumentation
      • Development Studies
      • Environmental Management
      • Narrative Strategies
      • Introductory Poetry
      • Etiquette & Assertiveness
      • Great Thinkers, etc (see the timetable).
  • Students can propose to replace a few formal lessons with ‘Genius Time’, which aims to boost creativity by allowing students to learn any new skills they wish, with our prior approval. This practice follows that of some innovative businesses.
  • Pairs of students can similarly propose to do a ‘Language Swap’, during which time different nationalities can teach each other their respective languages. Evidence of learning must then be demonstrated to a member of staff.
  • Weekly, students have Eloquence & Discursive Elaboration lessons in which they discuss their ideas on various topics using questions created from the full range of Bloom’s taxonomy of critical thinking.
  • Throughout the week students come together for whole-school activities as well as separating out into subject and English lessons.
  • Various trips are being discussed for 2016-2017, including:
    • Visit to Houses of Parliament (democracy)
    • Visit to Courts of Justice (rule of law)
    • Visit to Salisbury cathedral / Stonehenge (spiritual)
    • Visit from the Royal National Lifeboat Institution
  • A perennial calendar of World Days & Weeks has been created and around which various student events, debates and discussions can be organised.
  • Various posters are on display throughout the school to remind students and teachers of the important of SMSC.
  • Teachers’ appraisals include a checkpoint to provide evidence of SMSC within lessons twice yearly.
  • The implementation of our Behaviour Management policy involves a focus on student choice – to behave, apologise, or suffer sanctions (individual liberty and respect for law).

The UK government’s SMSC standards (as of September 2015) state that:

5. The standard about the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils at the school is met if the proprietor (a) actively promotes the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs; (b) ensures that principles are actively promoted which (i) enable pupils to develop their self-knowledge, self-esteem and self-confidence; (ii) enable pupils to distinguish right from wrong and to respect the civil and criminal law of England; (iii) encourage pupils to accept responsibility for their behaviour, show initiative and understand how they can contribute positively to the lives of those living and working in the locality in which the school is situated and to society more widely; (iv) enable pupils to acquire a broad general knowledge of and respect for public institutions and services in England; (v) further tolerance and harmony between different cultural traditions by enabling pupils to acquire an appreciation of and respect for their own and other cultures; (vi) encourage respect for other people, paying particular regard to the protected characteristics set out in the 2010 Act; and (vii) encourage respect for democracy and support for participation in the democratic process, including respect for the basis on which the law is made and applied in England; (c) precludes the promotion of partisan political views in the teaching of any subject in the school; and (d) takes such steps as are reasonably practicable to ensure that where political issues are brought to the attention of pupils (i) while they are in attendance at the school, (ii) while they are taking part in extra-curricular activities which are provided or organised by or on behalf of the school, or (iii) in the promotion at the school, including through the distribution of promotional material, of extra-curricular activities taking place at the school or elsewhere, they are offered a balanced presentation of opposing views.

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