The ethos of our school is centred around the word ‘peace’. We try to bring about this atmosphere in our approach to life and learning. The part that Peacekeepers play in this is vital to the growth in our children of their emotional intelligence. Children learn from each other how to deal with difficulties and solve problems.
We encourage our children to understand that there are no ‘perfect’ people in the world and that everyone makes mistakes when they are learning. This includes how we learn to socialize, deal with our own emotions and be resilient in the face of difficulties. When we make mistakes we can put them right and move on, as long as we do not continue to make the same mistake continuously.
Our Peacekeepers are adept at doing this and have been identified by their peers and adults who work with them as having the potential to bring peace to Moorside.
Once they are identified in the Summer term (pupils from Year 4 and 5) they are invited to apply for the post. As can be seen from their letters this is an important position in the school and children are very keen to become Peacekeepers.
Following their applications they are invited to attend interview. The panels consist of the head teacher, deputy head teacher and existing Peacekeepers. The children are asked a series of questions to find out if they have the correct skills, values and understanding of what the role entails. Their answers are scored by all panel members and only those who attain an acceptable score are given the post in school.
Our house system supports our approach to developing young people who are emotionally intelligent as housepoints are given for not just school work but also making the right choices. Our houses are named after four Nobel Peace Prize winners:- Saint Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, Malala Yousafzai and Nelson Mandela.
Our Peacekeepers are well supported, often by the children themselves but also by staff. When they cannot solve a problem there is a system for reporting directly to the head teacher who then helps all concerned to find a peaceful solution to the problem. Over the years this intervention has lessened greatly and Peacekeepers rarely need help now. Older Peacekeepers help younger Peacekeepers to get the approach right when they are helping their peers, particularly in the early days of their new responsibilities.
Peacekeepers are at the heart of all we do at Moorside and are a great credit to the Academy and their families.