Our collective worship policy strengthens and supports the Christian identity of our school, reaffirms our values and celebrates the contribution that each child makes to our community. Worship will reflect the variety of traditions found in the Church of England, and will recognise and follow the Christian liturgical year. The daily Christian act of worship is central to our ethos and is supported by all staff and members of the governing body.
“To worship is to quicken the conscience by the holiness of God, to feed the mind with the truth of God, to purge the imagination by the beauty of God, to open the heart to the love of God and to devote the will to the purpose of God”. William Temple (1881-1894)
Our school worship is central to the life of the school and contributes to the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of our pupils, as appropriate to their ages and aptitudes.
- to explore a relationship with God in Jesus Christ.
- to reflect on values that are of a broadly Anglican Christian tradition, whilst recognising the validity and importance of other Christian denominations, religions and belief systems
- to consider spiritual and moral issues and, through reflection, raise awareness of the ultimate questions of life relating to matters of faith.
- to reflect on their own beliefs.
- to deepen and widen the experience of those of ‘faith’ and encourage those of ‘little or no formal faith’ so that they begin to feel for themselves something of what it means to worship.
- to develop an enquiring mind and express and explore their own views openly and honestly through reflection and wondering questions.
- to develop a community spirit, a common ethos and shared values.
- to foster an awareness of the world around them and a sense of their place within it
- to develop a respect for and an understanding of different beliefs.
- to develop a sense of sharing and belonging through different groups of children coming together.
- To have opportunities to live out and explore Biblical teachings.
School worship (See also Appendix A)
- Takes place daily
- It is all inclusive – it is for all pupils, is open to the Governing Body and parents can be invited.
- Teaching staff are expected to attend and all other staff are welcome.
- Takes place either in the school halls or at Minster Abbey.
- Is planned, with specific themes, at a level in accordance with the differing age groups and understanding of the pupils attending the act of worship.
- Includes celebration in songs, hymns, readings, drama and other creative ways.
- Allows members of the school community to have opportunities to reflect, responding individually or collectively to a statement of belief, prayer, silence or reflection.
- Celebrates the achievements and learning of all pupils.
As a Church of England School, the content of our worship is organised to:
- Observe the cycle of the Church’s Year – Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter, Pentecost, Saints’ Days.
- Use the Bible as a source of knowledge and inspiration for themes and stories.
- Learn and say prayers from a number of sources, in particular the Lord’s Prayer and the Grace. Then allow for a time of silence and reflection.
- Allow opportunities to speak personal prayers aloud.
- Sing a wide variety of hymns and songs.
- Experience Christian symbols in worship and reflecting on their meaning e.g. cross, crucifix, bread and wine and candles.
- Use Psalms with simple responses.
- Celebrate Eucharist.
- Use Anglican sentences and responses (e.g The Lord is here, His spirit is with us)
- Link regularly with the congregation and Vicar of Minster Abbey.
The nature of Acts of Worship
Our daily act of worship should be an activity that:
- Is educational and spiritually enhancing
- Fosters a sense of community by sharing in fellowship with each other.
- Creates an atmosphere where those who wish to worship can do so.
- Introduces children to aspects of Christian worship and faith in an open and honest atmosphere.
- Encourages children to be creative, questioning and imaginative, within a Christian framework; also recognising the importance of experience, personal values and respect for the beliefs of others.
- Facilitates spiritual growth, enabling children to become true to themselves and others.
- Explores a relationship with God in Jesus Christ.
- Allows children to reflect on values that are of a broadly Anglican Christian tradition, whilst embracing the validity and importance of other Christian denominations, religions and belief systems.
- Allows children to consider spiritual and moral issues and, through reflection, raise awareness of the ultimate questions of life relating to matters of faith.
- Allows children to reflect on their own beliefs.
- Allows children to deepen and widen the experience of those of ‘faith’ and encourage those of ‘little or no formal faith’ so that they begin to feel for themselves something of what it means to worship.
- Allows children to develop an enquiring mind and express and explore their own views openly and honestly, with respect for the views of others.
- Allows children to develop a community spirit, a common ethos and shared values.
- Allows children to foster an awareness of the world around them and a sense of their place within it
- Allows children to develop a respect for and an understanding of different beliefs
- Allows children to develop a sense of sharing and belonging through different groups of the community coming together.
Collective worship is a legal requirement. Each school must provide a Christian act of collective worship for all pupils every day. This act of worship can take place at any time of the school day and in any regular school grouping e.g. whole school, key stage or class.
See Appendix A for a list of requirements and features of worship at St George’s C of E Primary School.
Worship in the classroom.
This is held within the classroom on a weekly basis and lead by the class teacher.
All the necessary resources i.e. songs, PowerPoints and video clips are saved into a teacher shared folder for all staff to access.
Teachers are responsible for adapting the plans and resources to suit their class and age group. Teachers are to provide any ‘real life’ objects or art resources which are needed to enhance the worship session.
Worship in the classroom follows the same requirements and features (See Appendix A) as Key stage and whole school worship.
Acts of worship should include all children and the content should respect the individuality of each child. Acts of worship will be always Christian but they will not be for proselytising; instead respecting the integrity and choices of every person. Prayers will be by invitation and there will be a time for free reflection.
When planning thought should be given to SEND children, especially any VI/HI children, to ensure they can access and engage with the stories and sung worship.
A budget will be set each year to provide resources needed for the effective delivery of collective acts of worship.
Right of Withdrawal
Although parents and carers have a legal right to withdraw their child from collective worship, by requesting and accepting a place at St George’s Church of England Primary School it is hoped that they demonstrate an understanding of the centrality of Christianity to the school and nature of the school as a place with religious education and collective worship in its daily life.
If you do wish for your child/ren to not be present in worship, then a formal request must be made in writing to the Head Teacher. The Head Teacher keeps a record of all children who withdraw from collective worship.
Evaluation and Record Keeping
The CD Leader will keep a record of the acts of Collective Worship, which shall include sufficient detail to show that this policy is being put into practice, this will include regular evaluation of the impact of the worship. The pupils, staff and parents will be asked to contribute to the evaluative process.
A group of children are asked to complete an evaluation form after each Collective Worship sessions. These are kept and reviewed by the CD leader.
Monitoring and Review
It is the role of the CD Leader, Head Teacher and Governing body to monitor the policy and practice of collective worship. They should receive copies of the worship scheme, observe whole school acts of collective worship regularly (at least three times per year) and seek the views of pupils.
CD leader to observe and monitor the leading of worship in the classroom. (at least 2 times a year)
Evaluations from the children will also be taken into account when planning worship sessions.
Self-assessment and Inspection
School Self-assessment will be completed on the SIAMS Toolkit by Head Teacher and CD Leader.
Worship is inspected under S48 of the Education Act.
Collective Worship Policy Appendix A
This is what worship at St George’s C of E Primary School looks like WORSHIP TO BEGIN AT 1.05pm AND FINISH AT 1.30pm PROMPTLY
- All teaching and ideas must be Christian and follow the teachings of the Bible and Jesus. All acts of worship must have a Bible story or Bible passage as its focus.
- The Leader must try to create a calming and inviting atmosphere conducive to worship, by:
Playing worship or quiet reflective music on arrival
Ensure that the Alter can be seen, that the stage curtains are drawn etc.
Welcome children by lighting the candle and by saying an Anglican bidding prayer (The Lord be with you…)
- Children should be given a chance to discuss, in talk partners, share their ideas/answers to a posed wondering question. (I wonder what does Respect mean? What does it look like in our school?)
- Sung worship should be included.
- There should be a time for children to reflect and think about the key / Bible message.
- Children should be given opportunity to pray, either personally (silently) or out loud on behalf of the other children.
- Close with a sending prayer and extinguish the candle.
- Selected children should must complete the worship evaluation form. (Please return to CD leader)
- Collective Worship must take place daily
- Classes must arrive and be picked up by class teacher / TA promptly.
- Teachers/ TA’s to model behaviour expectations.
- Children to enter and leave the hall silently and calmly.
- Children to sit in rows in their classes, year 6 children on the benches.
Leading Celebration Worship
Celebration worship at St George’s C of E Primary School includes:
- Quiet music as children arrive.
- Welcome and bidding prayer (The Lord be with you etc)
- Celebration certificates
- House Points
- Reading/Maths awards
- Thought of the day and challenge (2 mins max! Bible based)
- Song (if time)
- Bidding prayer – blow out the candle
- Quiet music to leave