British Values

The government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy – values of:

  • democracy
  • the rule of law
  • individual liberty
  • mutual respect
  • tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

and this definition has been used in the Independent School Standards since January 2013. This definition remains the same in the new standards.


Democracy, or democratic government, is a system of government in which all the people of a state or polity are involved in making decisions about its affairs, typically by voting to elect representatives to a parliament or similar assembly.

Rule of Law

the rule of law is a system in which the following four universal principles are upheld:

  1. The government and its officials and agents, as well as individuals and private entities, are accountable under the law.
  2. The laws are clear, publicized, stable, and just; are applied evenly; and protect fundamental rights, including the security of persons and property.
  3. The process by which the laws are enacted, administered, and enforced is accessible, fair, and efficient.
  4. Justice is delivered timely by competent, ethical, and independent representatives and neutrals who are of sufficient number, have adequate resources and reflect the makeup of the communities they serve.

In summary, this means that the law rules over all with no exception to government or the monarchy.

Individual Liberty

Individual liberty suggests the free exercise of rights generally seen as outside

Government control.

Mutual Respect

Mutual regard for one anthers dignity. Mutual respect is the foundation for honesty, trust, and meaningful communication. In order for relationships to remain healthy, both individuals must be equally respected and appreciated.

Tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

Accepting that people have different faiths and beliefs to us.