SMSC: Social, Moral, Spiritual, Cultural Development



Hugh Gaitskell Primary School is large and vibrant, reflecting the diverse community from which it draws its pupils. We therefore aim to deliver an education that provides pupils with opportunities to explore and develop their own values and beliefs, spiritual awareness, high standards of personal behaviour, a positive, caring attitude towards other people, an understanding of their own social and cultural traditions and an appreciation of the diversity and richness of other cultures.


We, at Hugh Gaitskell Primary School, strive to develop skills and personal qualities necessary for living and working together in harmony and making a positive contribution to the school community and wider society therefore, Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural development underpins everything we do. Through developing each pupil as an individual and as part of a wider community; we aim to enrich the children’s understanding of the world through all curriculum areas and in all aspects of school life.     


  • To give each pupil a range of opportunities to reflect upon and discuss their beliefs, feelings and responses to personal experience.
  • To develop a sense of awe, wonder and mystery based both on the natural world and on individual spirituality.
  • To enable pupils to begin to develop an understanding of their social and cultural environment and an appreciation of the many cultures that now enrich our society.
  • To give each pupil the opportunity to explore social and moral issues, and develop a sense of social and moral responsibility
  • To ensure a consistent approach to the delivery of SMSC issues through the curriculum and the general life of the school.
  • To ensure that pupils know what is expected of them and why.
  • To build a staff team where all feel valued and committed to the life of the school.
  • To enable pupils to develop an understanding of their individual and group identity.



Spiritual Development:

Pupils’ spiritual development is shown by their:

  • beliefs, religious or otherwise, which inform their perspective on life & their interest in & respect for different people’s feelings & values
  • sense of enjoyment and fascination in learning about themselves, others and the world around them, including the intangible
  • use of imagination and creativity in their learning
  • willingness to reflect on their experiences


Moral Development:

Pupils’ moral development is shown by their:

  • ability to recognise the difference between right and wrong, and their readiness to apply this understanding in their own lives
  • understanding of the consequences of their actions
  • interest in investigating, and offering reasoned views about, moral and ethical issues


Social Development:

Pupils’ social development is shown by their:

  • use of a range of social skills in different contexts, including working and socialising with pupils from different religious, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds
  • willingness to participate in a variety of social settings, cooperating well with others and being able to resolve conflicts effectively
  • interest in, and understanding of, the way communities and societies function at a variety of levels


Cultural Development:

Pupils’ cultural development is shown by their:

  • understanding and appreciation of the wide range of cultural influences that have shaped their own heritage
  • willingness to participate in, and respond to, for example, artistic, musical, sporting, mathematical, technological, scientific and cultural opportunities
  • interest in exploring, understanding of, and respect for cultural diversity and the extent to which they understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity, as shown by their attitudes towards different religious, ethnic and socio-economic groups in the local, national and global communities

Our Provision:

  • We promote teaching styles which value pupils’ questions and give them space for their own thoughts, ideas, and concerns.
  • Staff act as role models of the values desired in pupils.
  • Through effective assessment for learning principles we help pupils to be aware of their potential and support them to achieve it.
  • Where pupils already have religious or non-religious beliefs, we support and encourage these beliefs in ways which are personal and relevant to the pupils.
  • We provide opportunities for spiritual development through learning outside the classroom e.g. drama tuition from our resident actor, performances, art, ballet workshops, visits to museums and theatres.
  • We encourage individual endeavour and celebrate achievement and success, both within and outside the classroom (through drama, sports, music and outdoor pursuits).
  • We have a clear Behaviour for Learning Policy, focusing on positive behaviour management and supporting children to understand the consequences of inappropriate behaviour.
  • We provide positive group experiences in class teaching, class assemblies, school shows, educational visits, after school clubs and sports competitions.
  • We use Investors in Pupils to encourage children to make sensible decisions and take responsibility for their actions, both individually and as a team.
  • We provide opportunities for pupils to exercise leadership and responsibility.
  • We ensure that through lessons and other formal and informal opportunities are provided for pupils to demonstrate initiative, develop their interests and organise activities for themselves (e.g. personalised journals).
  • We reinforce the importance of a cohesive, harmonious, law abiding school through our daily routines and displays, and through special events e.g. anti-bullying week.
  • We reward good attitudes, behaviour, respect, and caring for others.
  • We teach pupils about citizenship, and the importance of being a good school member and a good citizen
  • We provide opportunities for pupils to make choices in their learning, curriculum activities and to be involved in democratic processes within the school.
  • We give pupils the opportunity to explore different values, beliefs, and cultures through a variety of approaches, including discussion and debate, in order to gain understanding.
  • We extend pupils’ cultural awareness through theatre, museum, gallery visits and visiting exhibitions and artists.