Church Status - Spiritual Development
As a voluntary controlled Church of England Primary School, we want our children to experience a Christian based education. Collective Worship and Religious Education have a central role to play in the life of our school, contributing to the child’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. Our distinctive ethos is shaped by the importance it gives to Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural development in the context of the Christian faith and beliefs.
The school has a special relationship with the community of Bodiam through its association with the Parish Church of St Giles. We attend the church regularly for special events and celebrations, which reflect the Liturgical Calendar including Christmas, Easter and Harvest. Pupils sing, dance, read from the Bible, perform poetry and experience and communicate the essence of an occasion in many different ways.
Canon Christopher Irvine, Priest in Charge of Bodiam & Ewhurst regularly comes to the school to lead our Collective Worship and takes part in special celebrations.
- As always, displays are vibrant and show what pupils have been learning.
- There are many examples of SMSC in displays.
- The Christian ethos of the school is evident and this is embedded in the way that staff relate to pupils and that pupils relate to each other.
- The schools’ core values of respect and tolerance are strong and evident in day to day life. Staff really care about pupils and have high expectations of each and every one.
The school’s strong Christian values and ethos are very clear.
The school has a strong and distinctive child-centred Christian ethos and clear Christian values which impact deeply and positively on the school’s outstanding provision and excellent outcomes for the pupils.
RE - SMSC - PROMOTING SPIRITUALITY
Every year, we create ‘PRAYER SPACES’ twice within the year. These have been promoted by the diocese and will be available for pupils, staff and governors to visit over the period of our Harvest Celebration.
Prayer spaces are now used in many church schools to encourage and inspire personal reflection/ prayer.
People of all faiths and none, have the opportunity to stop and reflect on a given theme.
A temporary space will be created for a few days and then the area will revert to its normal usage.
Our pupils have organised opportunities to visit the Prayer Space but they may choose to do so on their own at another time, or with parents.
Riverside Federation Prayer
Link with Thasa School, Malawi
Bodiam Church of England School shares a link with Etchingham Church of England Primary School to Thasa School, Kasungu District, Malawi. The link has been facilitated by the charitable organisation ‘Starfish Malawi’. The aim of the link is not only charitable but it is also about global education:
‘To motivate our pupils’ commitment to a fairer, more sustainable world.’
The Department for International Development (DIFD) supports partnerships that promote global education through the curriculum. They provide guidance for teachers and grants for reciprocal visits. Mr Blessings Zulu, Headteacher of Thasa school visited the Federation and the UK 3 years ago. Visits allow us to learn from each other and for pupils from both Schools to learn about each other's education, daily lives and culture.
A study by NFER on behalf of DIFD has shown that involvement in the Global Schools Partnership Programme has a significant positive effect on the awareness, attitudes and responses of pupils about global issues.
It is our intention that through this link we will ‘open the eyes’ of our pupils in an area of the country where there is little ethnic diversity. Development of the link with Thasa School is part of the expression of the Christian ethos of our school.
We believe that Reciprocal visits are a very important aspect of the partnership; therefore we will be looking for opportunities and funding for further visits to strengthen the links between our schools.
Once you see the conditions in which the children of Malawi learn, you cannot help but want to improve the facilities for them. Therefore, we do try to raise some money each year through fund-raising so that we can send writing equipment, books and paper to Thasa School in a container. We recently (2017) were able to send a container of resources to Thasa for the benefit of pupils and staff.
If you would like to find out more about the work of Starfish Malawi or would like to look at some educational resources, follow the links below:
- RE Curriculum Map
- RE Long Term Plan
- Riverside Federation collective worship policy
- Riverside Federation RE policy 2016
- Riverside Federation SMSC Policy 2020
- SIAMS inspection report 2017
- Understanding Christianity Overview
- Understanding Christianity Presentation