St Ambrose Barlow Catholic Primary School

Rights Respecting School Award

St. Ambrose Barlow Catholic Primary School is very proud to be working towards the UNICEF Rights Respecting School Award. The Rights Respecting School Award (RRSA) is an initiative run by UNICEF UK, which encourages schools to place the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) at the heart of its ethos and curriculum.

The Rights Respecting School Award helps our children grow into confident, caring and responsible young people, both in school and within the wider community. By learning about their rights, the children also learn about the importance of respecting the rights of others. We are currently working towards achieving the Silver Award. This means that we are rights aware.

Why should we learn about rights?

Learning about the rights of ALL children ensures these rights are met. Our teaching is based on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the work carried out by UNICEF. The Convention has 54 articles that cover all aspects of a child’s life and set out the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights that ALL children everywhere are entitled to. It also explains how adults and governments must work together to make sure all children enjoy their rights.

We have been promoting the values and principles of the 'United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child' and using it to underpin our vision for school improvement. We have been developing this approach to build upon our values-based learning, continue positive cultural development and create an even better atmosphere where everyone in the school is respectful of each other.

A Rights Respecting School is a learning community where children’s rights are learned, taught, practised, respected, protected and promoted. Over the forthcoming months, children and our school will learn further about children’s rights by putting them into practice every day. The award is not just about what children do but also importantly what adults do – in Rights Respecting Schools, children's rights are promoted with adults and children working together.

Our Playground Charter
Our Lunchtime Charter

Changes since partaking in the award:

  • Our class and phase assemblies now relate to the articles in the CRC.
  • The displays in our school show articles from the CRC.
  • Each class has developed its own class charter based on the CRC.
  • We have held Rights and Responsibility focus weeks.
  • The school has a 'half termly right' which is displayed and linked to our half termly value and virtue.

Steering Group 2019/20.

Each class has a Rights Respecting Representative and they form part of the Steering Group. Included in our team are some committed parent/governor representatives, Mrs Cunnane and Mrs Finnegan, to help the children raise awareness of local and global issues the children should get involved in knowing, understanding and helping. The Steering Group is headed by Mrs Kavanagh.

The Steering Group hold regular meetings to discuss our progress and decide on what to do next. They work with our rights governor and all members of staff.

Most recently, the Steering Group has worked hard to link Article 24, Global Goals 12, 13 and 15 to our daily lives by:

  • Looking after our environment by clearing vegetable patches in our school prayer garden.
  • Litter picking along the Shirley Road and surrounding local area.
  • Designing posters reminding our community to recycle paper whenever possible.
  • Lead whole school assemblies based on specific articles from the convention.
  • Complete display evaluations around our school, ensuring that the UNICEF convention and global goals are widely publicised throughout our school community.

The Rights Respecting steering group is the voice of our children! Additionally, they help organise a number of themed weeks to help children develop a better understanding of children's rights all around the world.


Rights Respecting Champions

Rights Respecting Champions from Autumn Term 2019.

Each term, we celebrate KS1 and KS2 children who show particular awareness of their rights and others’ rights, both in school and at home.

These children help promote the fact we are a Rights Respecting School; this is a place where we can all feel confident with ourselves and it encourages children to use their voice.

This award helps children to build their confidence and encourages them raise awareness of injustice in the world, at a local and global level.

Steering Group Updates

November 2019: Plastic Pen Recycling in school a.k.a. ‘The Pen Brigade’

Our school is a Terracycle community recycling point for plastic pens. Our Steering Group and School Council have created wonderful posters that help publicise this initiative around school.

Due to their mixed plastics, pens are unable to be recycled with household waste and need to be processed through a specialist recycling plant. Bic have teamed up with Terracycle, an innovative recycling company that specialises in hard-to-recycle materials, in order to provide facilities to recycle any brand or type of plastic pen.

Please send any old plastic pens, felt tips, old ink cartridges, highlighters or markers into school with your child. There is a ‘Pen Brigade’ box for recycling in every classroom.

September 2019: Gardening

Fulfilling A. 24 of the convention (Children have the right to good quality health care, to clean water, nutritious food and a clean environment, so that they will stay healthy. Rich countries should help poorer countries achieve this) and Global Goals 13 and 15, the Steering Group spent their lunchtime weeding and tidying our Prayer Garden.

Our vegetable patches will soon be looking fresh!


How can you support your child’s learning about the convention?

The learning of rights, respect and responsibility begins at home. Children at St. Ambrose Barlow learn about children in the UK and other parts of the world whose rights may not be respected. This develops a stronger sense of empathy and an awareness of how their actions can impact others.

By showing an interest and becoming involved in your child’s learning, you help your child learn the importance of giving and sharing with others:

  • Take time to ask your child what they have learned recently regarding children’s rights.
  • Ask your child’s opinion on children’s rights.
  • Read the Convention articles.

For further information visit the UNICEF website (external link).

You can read also the UNICEF Convention (pdf)

If you would like to help us with our RRSA journey we would love to hear from you!

Global Citizenship

The pupils have become aware of their roles as global citizens. This involves not just teaching about rights, justice, equality, respect and sustainable development, but putting these into practice through being energy conscious, environmentally aware, sensitive to the sourcing of resources and materials, ethically conscious, respectful of all people and the environment.

Teachers address the misconception that the mere fact that we all live on the earth makes us global citizens but active global citizenship involves a sense of global solidarity with our brothers and sisters across the world.

A global citizen actively participates to work for global justice. We are working together to achieve the 17 global goals before 2030.

For more information visit the World's Largest Lesson website (external link).