Broughton Fields Primary School

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Broughton Fields Primary School's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Broughton Fields Primary School is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles


Highlighting best practice
Year 6 pupils are all paired with
a “little friend” in foundation
Children working collaboratively, perfectly
demonstrating our value of cooperation
When Sue Payne and Helen Brazier were appointed
head and deputy to the brand-new Broughton
Fields Primary School in Milton Keynes in 2004, they
saw an opportunity to exercise their philosophy in the very
formation of a school. Their research eventually took them to
West Kidlington Primary in Oxfordshire, where head teacher
Neil Hawkes was pioneering a system known as “values-based
education”, based on his belief that “the world in the future
will be held up by the values that children develop as they grow
up”. This system is focused on how you teach, not what you
teach, and is a philosophy embedded in every strand of school
life at Broughton Fields, just as Sue and Helen wanted it. Hayley
Hughes, deputy head, explains how this philosophy of values-
based education underpins all school activities.
Broughton Fields is a two form entry primary school on the eastern side of Milton
Keynes. The school opened in September 2004 with just over 40 pupils. It was in
the middle of a building site with very few homes around it. Today the estate has
developed and two other primary schools have opened less than a mile away to
accommodate Milton Keynes’ growing population.
When the school opened, as is often the case in new schools, there was an influx of
children who, for a range of reasons, were not getting on at their existing schools.
Children joined the school who were at risk of being or had been permanently
excluded elsewhere. This meant that the school had some very challenging classes
»Head teacher: Nick Hearn
»Deputy head teacher:
»Founded in 2004
»Based in Milton Keynes
»Type of school: Local authority
primary school
»No. of pupils: 416 on roll,
of which 29 per cent have
English as an additional
»No. of teachers: 24
»Ofsted: “Good”, Spring 2017
Broughton Fields
Primary School
and children joining all of the time. The
first four or five years at Broughton
Fields were, therefore, very demanding
for staff. But, even within these
challenges, there were many successes
and children whose behaviour was
“turned around”. This continues to
be the case today. Everyone at school
believes that this can be attributed
to our values-based approach to
education. We know that everything
we do is a model to the children in our
care. In many cases, this is a model
they are not getting outside of the
school gates and, often, we have to do
a lot of work with individual children
to help them seethis.
Our values
Our 22 core values provide the basis
for this modelling. By presenting
consistent expectations and
boundaries, and by helping the
children to understand how values can
shape their behaviour, we build good
Every month we focus on a specific
value from a list of 22. This repeats
every two years. So, if children are
with us for their entire primary school
life they will re-visit each value at
least three times, each time at a
deeper level. Assemblies focus on the
value and they are a thread that runs
through every interaction we have with
the children. There is no such thing
as a lesson devoted to specific values
at the school: instead the values are
woven into every lesson. We want the
children to recognise these values in
themselves and those around them
and to demonstrate them in their
own interactions not just at school
but at home and as they become
Our values include responsibility,
honesty, love, hope and tolerance.
Values do not cure all – we are still
dealing with children after all. Children
still have disagreements, they still find
it hard to share and do as they are
asked. But, where an issue does arise,
we use our values as a basis for the
conversation that follows the incident.
We might ask the children to tell us
which value they were demonstrating
or how their behaviour didn’t
represent our values. We will never say
that the child themselves has done the Values tree in our values
garden. Each of the
school’s 22 values is
represented on the tree
We want the
children to
these values in
and those
around them
We offer four residential visits each year,
one for each year group from 3 to 6
Highlighting best practice
wrong thing, but that their behaviour
was wrong. On the reverse of this,
when praising children, we try hard
to reflect it back to the values to help
them understand the value that they
were demonstrating in order to receive
the praise. More recently, we have
begun referring to values as part of the
normal learning process: for example
in a lesson requiring collaboration or
group work we might ask the children
to tell us what values they think
they will need to use, for example,
understanding and unity.
Embedded in our culture
It may seem a small thing but it is
rare that staff will open a door for
themselves at Broughton Fields if a
child is nearby. Children automatically
hold the door open and a line of
children will stand to one side to let an
adult through. Children will ask staff
if they are OK, whether they have had
a nice lunch and what they have done
at the weekend. They show a genuine
interest in our lives as they know we
value and have that same interest
The final key aspect of VBE is
reflection. We make time each day for
the children to reflect both on their
learning from the day and, at times,
their actions. At school, children are
bombarded with information, facts
and concepts and there is often little
time to process them before moving
on to the next thing. This reflection
time is crucial for them to consolidate
their learning and “box it up” in their
brain. If a child has been involved
in an incident in the classroom or
playground we will often give them
time to reflect and collect their
thoughts before talking through what
has happened. Giving them a few
minutes to both calm down and reflect
generally means that it’s easier to get
to the bottom of what has happened
and therefore it can be dealt with
more successfully.
We want to educate every child to be a
good citizen and to grow up to model
their values to everyone around them,
shaping the future to be better than
the present. Values-based education
enables us to do this.
We want to
educate every
child to be a
good citizen
and to grow
up to model
their values to
around them,
shaping the
future to be
better than
the present
School reception area
with another values tree
and welcome message


This article was sponsored by Broughton Fields Primary School. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng.

Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng

This year’s Parliamentary Review reflects on a tumultuous and extraordinary year, globally and nationally. As well as being an MP, I am a keen student of history, and I am conscious that 2020 would mark the end of an era. It will be remembered as the year in which we concluded Brexit negotiations and finally left the European Union. Above all, it will be remembered as the year of Covid-19.

In our fight against the pandemic, I am delighted that our vaccination programme is beginning to turn the tide – and I pay tribute to the British businesses, scientists and all those who have helped us to achieve this. But the virus has dealt enormous damage, and we now have a duty to rebuild our economy.

We must ensure that businesses are protected. We have made more than £350 billion available to that end, with grants, business rates relief and our furlough scheme supporting more than 11 million people and jobs in every corner of the country, maintaining livelihoods while easing the pressure on employers. The next step is to work with business to build back better and greener, putting the net zero carbon challenge at the heart of our recovery. This is a complex undertaking, but one which I hope will be recognised as a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Through the prime minister’s ten point plan for a green industrial revolution, we can level up every region of the UK, supporting 250,000 green jobs while we accelerate our progress towards net zero carbon emissions.

With our commitment to raise R&D spending to 2.4% of GDP and the creation of the Advanced Research & Invention Agency, we are empowering our fantastic researchers to take on groundbreaking research, delivering funding with flexibility and speed. With this approach, innovators will be able to work with our traditional industrial heartlands to explore new technologies, and design and manufacture the products on which the future will be built – ready for export around the globe.

And I believe trade will flourish. We are a leading nation in the fight against climate change. As the host of COP26 this year, we have an incredible opportunity to market our low-carbon products and expertise. Our departure from the EU gives us the chance to be a champion of truly global free trade; we have already signed trade deals with more than 60 countries around the world.

As we turn the page and leave 2020 behind, I am excited about the new chapter which Britain is now writing for itself, and for the opportunities which lie ahead of us.
Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng
Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy