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Ethos and Values

St Mary’s RC Primary School was founded by the Catholic Church to provide education for children of Catholic families. The school is conducted by its Governing Body as part of the Catholic Church in accordance with its trust deed and instrument of government, and seeks at all times to be a witness to Jesus Christ.

Collective Worship

We believe that Christian worship in a Catholic school names and celebrates God’s presence in our lives. It is concerned with giving glory, honour, praise and thanks to God. It is our loving response, in word and action, to God’s invitation to enter into relationship, made possible through the work of Jesus Christ and the witness of the Holy Spirit.

The Place of Collective Worship in the Life of our School

Worship in this school is more than just a legal requirement. It is an integral part of school life and central to the Catholic tradition.

Collective worship takes into account the religious and educational needs of all who share in it:

  • Those who form part of the worshipping community in church;
  • Those for whom school may be their first and only experience of church;
  • Those from other Christian traditions – or none;
  • Those from other faith backgrounds.

It will be an educational activity or experience to which all can contribute and from which all can gain.

The Aims of Collective Worship

  • We believe that Collective Worship in our school aims to provide opportunity for all pupils and staff:
  • To contemplate something of the mystery of God
  • To reflect on spiritual and moral issues
  • To explore their own beliefs
  • To respond to and celebrate life
  • To experience a sense of belonging and develop community spirit
  • To develop a common ethos and shared values
  • To enrich religious experience
  • To grow in liturgical understanding and development
  • To reinforce prayers which are part of the Catholic tradition
  • To reinforce positive attitudes
  • To participate fully
  • To take time out ‘to wonder at’, ‘to come to terms with’ and ‘to give worth to.’

Principles

All Acts of Worship in this school will:

  • Give glory and honour to God
  • Be a quality activity, fundamental to the life of the school and its Catholic character
  • Develop in pupils skills that enable them to prepare, organise and lead worship rather
    than always participating or contributing in a token ay
  • Give pupils positive liturgical experiences, appropriate to their age, aptitude and family
    backgrounds in order to prepare them for the liturgical life of the Church.

In order to do this, celebrations will:

  • be kept small wherever possible or appropriate to help to personalise the
    experience
  • be short and appropriately paced ( children’s attention span lasts in any one activity
    for an average of one minute per year of life i.e., 5-6 mins. For Key Stage 1 and 7-10 mins. For Key Stage 2 )
  • be simple, including a range of experiences offered in a variety of groupings and in a variety of settings.

Collective worship in our schools will be:

  • properly planned
  • adequately resourced
  • recorded
  • monitored
  • evaluated