A strong pupil voice has clear benefits for both schools and learners. The views of pupils can help the school to identify future priorities and make more informed decisions on wellbeing, learning experiences and the quality of teaching. Through their involvement, pupils develop valuable personal and social skills such as listening skills and working with others.
At Belleville we have a school council, with representatives from every year group, and we undertake regular pupil surveys to gather children's views. We encourage pupils to take peer leadership roles, such as our "playground pals" who look out for lonely children at lunchtime.
This is part of a wider ethos that encourages children to take ownership of their learning. For example, our 'excellent learners' approach encourages children to speak up as well as listen, and we regularly use 'self organised learning environments' to encourage independence.
We also make sure that all children know who they can speak to, if they have a problem within or outside school. Posters are displayed around both sites, with the names and pictures of key staff they can approach. Children can drop a message in one of a 'bubble box' if they are worried about something.