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Spirituality and Values

Why we are interested in Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development (SMSC) and Values

Culham St Gabriel’s is interested in approaches to SMSC which enable school leaders and staff to fulfil and go beyond the inspection requirements, to understand and implement their school’s vision, and to spread good practice. Grant applicants are asked to take note that our support for SMSC work focuses strongly on spiritual and moral development. Any grant applications in this area should assume a broad definition of SMSC which is:

– Open to the transcendent and ultimate (including the divine), and to values that challenge individuals and cultures by pointing beyond the material

– Embedded in the school’s ethos and sense of mission, including its commitment to the wellbeing of pupils and staff

– Humble, welcoming and confident in the practice of prayer, worship, liturgy, or spiritual and moral reflection

– Investing time in the depth and quality of character in individuals and/or communities

– Providing safe spaces for skilfully led and informed discussion and exploration of challenging issues related to belief, meaning, identity, moral values, and respect for difference

– Creating opportunities for pupils to learn and practise virtues and values that are British and universally human, such as compassion, commitment to the common good, environmental responsibility, faith, forgiveness, hope, hospitality, humility, loving service, prophetic courage, respect, reconciliation, tolerance and truthfulness.

The applicant’s work should aspire to be:

– Contextualised in the whole curriculum, teaching and learning (including RE where appropriate)

– Supported and articulated by senior and middle leadership, and governors

– Visible through day to day decisions and relationships

– Understood, promoted, and implemented by teachers, other staff, and pupils

– In dialogue with wider practice and research

– Open to the community.


We are scaling up our commitment to supporting spiritual and moral development through our work with the RSA’s enquiry into SMSC and our support for the Schools Linking Network’s professional development on whole-school approaches to SMSC.


We are excited to see the National Society’s recent publication, Fruits of the Spirit (https://churchofengland.org/media/2386307/fruits_of_the_spirit.pdf), which offers a discussion on Character Education from a Church of England perspective.


SMSC, Values and Prevent Roundtable

In late 2015, Culham St Gabriel’s hosted a roundtable discussion on SMSC, values and Prevent.

Schools Linking’s slides that were presented by Meg Henry and Linda Cowie can be viewed here:  http://www.cstg.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Round-Table-SMSC-SL-slides.ppt

The report from the session can be viewed here: http://www.cstg.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/SMSC-RT-Report-2015.docx



See the RSA’s report on SMSC, School’s with Soul: http://www.thersa.org/action-research-centre/learning,-cognition-and-creativity/education/reports-and-events/reports/schools-with-soul

You can see examples of the RSA’s work here http://www.thersa.org/fellowship/journal/archive/summer-2013/features/the-brains-behind-spirituality


Schools Linking

Schools Linking’s SMSC support for school leaders and teachers can be found here http://www.schoolslinking.org.uk/courses/

School Linking is running a CPD day for teachers focused on ‘Leading Outstanding Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development and British Values: from class to whole school’.  This takes place on November 16th 2016 in Bradford and costs £250.

For more information, see: http://www.schoolslinking.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/SMSC-Flyer-Apr-16.pdf

See a keynote presentation delivered by Mark Chater to the Schools Linking Network, Bradford, 7th October 2014: http://cstg.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/British-Values-SLN-2014.pdf