Cornwall school's good manners lessons could go national

Image caption,
Head teacher Mr Smith said pupils were taught the virtues of good character

A national curriculum in good manners could be created after the success of teaching "truth, kindness and resilience" at a primary school.

The head teacher of Kehelland Village School near Camborne, Cornwall has been asked by the University of Birmingham to help write a curriculum.

The university launched the Framework for Character Education in 2013.

Head teacher Geoff Smith said pupils have had lessons in virtues to put them "ahead of the game" since 2007.

'Good character'

Students are encouraged to lay the foundation of good character by being taught virtues such as truthfulness, respect, courtesy, cooperation, creativity, forgiveness and flexibility.

Mr Smith said: "Telling the truth is a skill like anything else; like percentages, fractions, times tables, it needs to be practised. We try to provide an opportunity to practise those skills.

"I think a lot of schools develop good character and values [in pupils] but here we explicitly teach the children what these virtues are."

Aidan Thompson, from the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues at the University of Birmingham, said the centre had worked with the school, particularly Mr Smith, for the past two years.

He said: "Geoff was initially part of a group who advised on the construction of our Framework for Character Education, which was launched in 2013.

"Since then, over the last six months Geoff and the school have been involved in working to develop a programme of study for teaching character education in primary schools.

"This is a very significant piece of work, and one which we hope will have a major impact with primary schools across the country."

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