SMSC Vision and Rationale

Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural  education at Henley-in-Arden School


The Vision behind SMSC at Henley-in-Arden School

The vision for Henley-in-Arden School is to raise the aspirations of our students by nurturing a passion for learning, enriching their learning experiences, providing the knowledge and skills they need to be successful in adult life. We recognise that all students need to develop spiritually, morally, socially and culturally. This development allows them to make sense of their world and our curriculum helps develop an informed and balanced view on world events, beliefs and values of others.


The Rational behind SMSC

At Henley-in-Arden School the promotion of students’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is considered to central to their education. People form their values and attitudes in childhood. These may change over time, but those values and attitudes formed in early life are likely to have a strong influence on the adult person’s role as a citizen.

As a school, we have a duty to provide a positive influence whilst at the same time allowing students freedom of expression and the ability to reach decisions for themselves (conformity and challenge). The example set by adults in the school and the quality of relationships is of particular importance in promoting spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

We recognise that the personal development of students, spiritually, morally, socially and culturally, plays a significant part in their ability to learn and achieve.

Students encounter SMSC and British values in every aspect of school life; through their lessons, through assemblies, through whole school initiatives like kindness days, through visiting speakers and presentations and through extra-curricular activities. In recognition of this we track the provision of SMSC and British values across subjects using Gridmaker as well as termly updates of this provision through assemblies, whole school initiatives, visiting speakers and extra-curricular activities.


We promote SMSC in the following ways:


This relates to the quest for individual identity and the search for meaning and purpose in our existence. It leads towards the understanding of self and others. It has to do with feelings, emotions, attitudes and beliefs. It is not linked solely to a particular doctrine or faith and spiritual development is therefore accessible to everyone. At Henley this may be done through:

  • Exploring different beliefs & faiths
  • Studying the concept of identity in literature and art
  • Allowing time for personal reflection


Students are encouraged to understand the need for a common code and to follow it from conviction rather than because of sanctions or consequences. At Henley we work towards an understanding of what is right and wrong. From this basis students may develop the ability to make judgements and to become increasingly responsible for their own actions or and behaviour. At Henley this may be done through:

  • Asking and answering moral questions
  • Studying texts and exploring moral dilemmas that characters face
  • Using thought for the week to explore big questions in a collaborative way in form time



This enables students to become conscientious participants in their family, class, school, the local and wider community. Within this there should be a balance of the positive, satisfying elements of belonging to a group or society along with the demands, obligations and cooperation such membership requires. At Henley this may be done through:

  • Collaborative learning
  • Raising awareness of social media and how to use it critically
  • Developing our oracy skills through student led presentations and class discussions.
  • Character awards



At the heart of cultural development lies the necessity to develop a sense of personal identity, whilst at the same time acquiring awareness, understanding and tolerance regarding the cultural traditions and beliefs of others. At Henley this may be done through:

  • Inclusion of photographs, artefacts and music from other cultures
  • Fostering strong European links through language classes and extra-curricular activities
  • Opportunities to go on trips abroad throughout school