We are a Rights Respecting School                                                   

At Hasting Hill Academy we want our pupils to:

  • Be happy and safe
  • Have strong relationships
  • Be active in school life and the wider world

In 2018 we were awarded Silver status for the Rights Respecting Schools Award. Since then, we have continued our commitment to the award, as we want our pupils to:

  • Know about rights
  • Exercise their rights
  • Feel valued
  • Recognise the rights of others

We intend to aim high and develop our commitment further, by achieving Gold status in Autumn 2020. We are so proud to share some of the amazing projects that we’ve recently been involved with:

Rights Knights: Article 19 - Your education should help you develop your talents and abilities.

We have a group of pupils from Years 1 – 6 who are elected every year to work to ensure every member of our school community is aware of children’s rights. They meet regularly and are proactive in improving school life. We respect the views and contributions made by our Rights Knights and aim to use these to make improvements to the school whenever possible. This is our rights Knights logo, which you will be able to see on displays around school.


At the start of the year each class created a charter to set out the rights pupils felt were most relevant to support positive behaviour; everyone in the class then agreed to the charter. These are displayed in our classrooms.

The Rights Knights also worked together to create a playground charter, which is used to remind pupils and staff (duty bearers) of our roles during OPAL play:

Right of the Fortnight

Every week during class assembly time we explore a different Article from the UN Convention on the rights of the child. This is to ensure pupils fully understand what the different Articles are and what they each mean. The Right of the Fortnight is displayed in all classes:

Anti-Bullying Week: Articles 2, 12 and 19 - You have the right to be protected from being hurt and mistreated, in body or mind

Every year we promote Anti-Bullying Week and all classes learn about the different types of bullying and what to do if you’re being bullied. We also promote ‘Odd Socks Day’ and pupils and staff wear odd socks to celebrated diversity and difference. The Rights Knights created a child-friendly anti bullying policy, which is displayed in all classes.


OPAL Play: Article 31 - You have the right to play and rest.

After completing a whole school questionnaire on how to improve play times, we introduced OPAL play. Pupils in school participated in fund raising activities to buy playtime equipment. We now have a lots of amazing playtime resources!

Personal Development Week: Article 3 –Best interests of the child, Article 14 – Freedom of thought, belief and religion, Article 42 – Knowledge of rights

During ‘Personal Development Week’, Autumn 2020 all classes explored how to be a good British citizen, as well as other prominent themes such as:

  • Returning to school
  • Feelings
  • Health & Wellbeing
  • Positive behaviour
  • Democracy
  • Citizenship
  • Global Goals

Pupils also learn about British Values through our weekly whole school assembly story, as well as through our links with Wearside Youth for Christ.

PSHE curriculum: Article 24 – Health and health services

The PHSE curriculum at Hasting Hill Academy has recently been revised and enhanced to ensure that it is reflective of the needs of pupils and that there is a consistent approach in the teaching of PSHE from Nursery - Year 6. The Autumn Term has a great focus on pupil’s Health and Wellbeing.

E safety: Article 24: You have the right to a safe environment and information to help you stay well.

E-Safety is an integral part of our computing curriculum. At Hasting Hill we used Purple Mash Computing to delve into the topic of E-Safety; this is taught in all year groups.

PE: Article 2 – Non discrimination, Article 23 – Children with a disability, Article 24 - Health

At Hasting Hill Academy, our PE curriculum gives pupils the opportunity to explore disability sports such as: Boccia and disability archery.

Black History Month: Article 2 – Non discrimination, Article 30 – children from minority groups

Pupils learn about diversity, different races and cultures through a structured PSHE and RE curriculum. Pupils from Reception - Year 6 learned about a chosen black hero during ‘Black History Month’ (October 2020). A range of books, showcasing diversity were purchased and are used in class assemblies/ reading areas.


Christmas Jumper Day: Article 24 – Health, Article 26 – Social security, Article 27 – Adequate standard of living

Every year we all wear our favourite festive jumpers and support a great cause. In 2019 the Rights Knights decided to support Changing Lives; a national charity that supports over 17,000 people each year, including those experiencing homelessness, domestic violence, addictions, unemployment & more.

This kindness is supported throughout the year with our continued generous donations to help the local food bank.


Healthy Living: Article 24 – Health

  We have a strong emphasis on making healthy choices at Hasting Hill Academy. 

We learn about healthy living through our Science, PSHE and PE curriculum.

Multi-faith Week: Articles 2 – Non discrimination, 22 – Refugee Children, 14 – Freedom of thought, belief and religion

As well as learning about diversity, different races and cultures through a structured PSHE and RE curriculum, pupils at Hasting Hill Academy celebrate a Multi-faith week each year, in which we explore our understanding of religions such as Buddhism, Sikhism and Islam. 

During ‘Multi-faith Week’ Early Years visit Bethany Christian Centre and Lower Key Stage 2 visit Gurdwara, Sunderland as part of their studies on Sikhism.

We also plan in a Diversity Day, in which guest speakers from a range of different countries come into school to share their experiences with pupils. 

Restorative Justice

At Hasting Hill Academy we have a whole school approach to positive behaviour and we encourage pupils to take ownership of their own behaviour. All staff are fully trained in restorative justice, as well as a group of pupils; our ‘Hasting Hill Helpers,’ who help to resolve minor conflict at break times and lunch times.

British Science Week: Article 29 – Goals of education

Every year we celebrate British Science Week. Last year some of our Key Stage 1 pupils explore dhow to melt ice to save trapped dinosaurs, painted with different textures and made bubble snakes! 


Refugee Week: Articles 22 – Refugee Children and Article 30 – Children from minority groups

Guest speaker Steve Newman, Amnesty International and his friend, Saman, who is a Kurdish refugee held a whole school assembly and delivered class workshops to teach pupils about first hand experiences of living in Sunderland as a refugee. 

Tree Planting Day: Article 29 – Goals of education

In 2019 we held a whole school family tree planting day to support the work of our school Eco Team and to strengthen pupil’s knowledge and understanding of biodiversity.


World Children’s Day: Articles 1 – Definition of the child, Article 4 – Making rights real

The whole school celebrated UNICEF’s ‘World Children’s Day 2020’ by each class exploring and learning about one of the 17 Global Goals.


Our journey as a Rights Respecting School has been amazing so far, but we don’t intend to stop there! We hope to achieve Gold status then develop our projects further in 2021-22 to include thinking more about refugee children through becoming a ‘School of Sanctuary’ and making a link with a primary school in a third-world country to extend our learning about the global goals for sustainable development.