SMSC Quality Mark

The Friary School holds the top-ranked Gold Award following our Young Citizens Review of our curriculum’s provision in terms of Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural (SMSC) education. The SMSC Quality Mark involves a comprehensive external inspection of our curriculum and seeks to discover how we compare to rigorous criteria.

This well-respected curriculum accreditation ensures that our provision and education is ambitious and thorough in empowering our students so that they are active in building a progressive society. The Young Citizens benchmarks demand that children are granted wide-ranging opportunities to make a positive difference in the society in which they live – locally, nationally and globally – and challenges schools to help them develop the knowledge, skills and confidence to play their part in modern British society. These expectations are not only good for the students’ personal growth, but they are also essentially strengthening and safeguarding our society and our democratic way of life.

This award is naturally about the strategic and day-to-day curriculum provision in the school, but it also inspects how the quality of leadership and management and the very fabric of the building are utilised to maximise experiences, messaging and personal growth. To this end the following four key criteria of verification face detailed scrutiny:

1. The Effectiveness of Leadership & Management
2. Teaching, Learning & Curriculum
3. Extra-Curricular Provision
4. Whole-School Provision

This award demands that our school continually reflects on what and how we provide SMSC experiences. It is not about ticking boxes, but more about on-going development and challenge with re-inspections to hold school leaders to account. It expects no resting on laurels, but more that the school integrate SMSC across the subject areas, across school life, and pursues a minute-by-minute vision of the overall picture and development of students so that they become caring, informed and secure human-beings.

This award reflects our school’s commitment to the whole child: not just the exam results they achieve, but more the individual they grow into being. Personal growth could come from the cut-and-thrust of debate or the being leader and voice of change; it could be the captaining on the sports field or the spotlight of the school theatre; it could be in the jungles of Borneo or the depth of Paris’ catacombs; it could be through nurturing a dementia-sufferer in a care home or passionately fund-raising for the local children’s hospice.

Our school seeks to deliver a special curriculum which means the growth between 11-18 years of age is broad and formative. This is why we are so proud of our ‘Gold’ SMSC Quality Award and why we are consistent in finding and sprinkling magic in our curriculum so that school life is fun and eye-opening, yet also reflective and fulfilling.

To learn more about our SMSC Quality Mark, please contact Matt Allman, Headteacher, via