Welcome to our Catholic life page

Through this page we aim to share with you and celebrate many of the elements which make our Catholic school so special. Here you will find information to help families, the Parish and school work together in supporting the development of our children's faith and Religious Education.  You will also find photographs showing special celebrations and some of our diverse opportunities for Collective Worship. There are also photographs of our school work, displays, charity work and celebrations, Masses and special events.

In Catholic schools, as in any school, Religious Education is taught as an academic subject. However, the whole life of a Catholic School has to be an expression in practice of Catholic belief and Catholic tradition. As they grow, the children are encouraged to put their faith into practice in their own lives.

In class, the children help to prepare and participate in masses and assemblies. Not only in the teaching, but also in the daily practice of the faith, our children are helped by the personal example of the staff. We encourage children to ask questions about the teachings of Christ and to develop enquiring minds.  By working together for the children, parents and teachers make this school a place which we can truly say that ‘We value all in the name of Jesus the Christ’.

The Catholic life of the school is rich in opportunities for children to encounter God and to deepen their relationship with Him as a loving, compassionate Father. Through prayer, both traditional and informal, through liturgies and Religious Education lessons, where children receive direct teaching of the faith, through the relationships and support for each other that children, staff and parents enjoy within the school community, we enable children to come to know and love God.

 

Religious icons can be found throughout the school. Displays of work in RE are of very high quality and can be seen in classrooms and all around the school, including the school's main reception area. Each class has a prayer focus area, with a liturgical cloth in the appropriate colour.  The Christian values at the heart of our Catholic faith incorporate the British values and we aim in everything we do to further each child's sense of commitment and responsibility to themselves, to others and in the wider world.

Prayer and worship

Prayer and worship are central to the daily life of our school. We aim to provide opportunities for children's spiritual growth and development through participation in a variety of forms of worship and through experiencing all forms of prayer: formal, informal, spontaneous, private, shared, petitionary and meditative.

Pupils are actively involved in planning and leading worship, both in class groups and whole school settings. Shared acts of worship take place in an atmosphere of reflection and stillness, where we encourage each other to listen to God speaking to us and to respond. Children are encouraged to write prayers and this is a skill which we explicitly teach, just as we teach other genres in literacy.

What Is Prayer?

For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy.

(St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Manuscrits autobiographiques, C 25r.)

 

The school as a Catholic Community

All staff, led by the Headteacher, R.E Leader and Governors are aware that the school's foundations are built on the Catholic faith and beliefs and that it is our shared responsibility to transmit the Catholic faith to the children in our care. All staff receive regular in-service training as part of their continuous professional development. Staff pray and work together to support each other in providing the very best Religious Education possible for the pupils.

Learning in RE is at the core of the curriculum and we ensure that the Bishop's directive is followed in allocating 10% of curriculum time to RE lessons. The Governing Body, led by the Chair and the Governor responsible for RE, provide outstanding support and commitment to the central place of RE in the school.

We hold the belief that we share the role of educators of the faith with the parents of our pupils and we strive to keep them fully informed of what their child is learning at school and to support them in what they can do at home to further their child's understanding of the faith. Parents are welcomed to assemblies, Masses and other liturgies throughout the year.

We believe that the school alone cannot undertake a child’s religious education. Religious Education begins at home; the parents are the child’s first teachers and support the child with his/her first religious experiences. The school works in partnership with parents and parish to enrich the lives of our children.

We distribute newsletters each term to inform parents about the forthcoming events and notify parents of Masses and liturgies both in the school and the Parish. 

St.Joseph’s regularly supports Parish events and fundraising e.g. CAFOD, Apostleship of the Sea shoebox Advent appeal and Lenten appeals.

Home/School/Parish
partnership

We believe that the school alone cannot undertake a child’s religious education. Religious Education begins at home; the parents are the child’s first teachers and support the child with his/her first religious experiences. The school works in partnership with parents and parish to enrich the lives of our children.

We distribute newsletters each term to inform parents about the forthcoming events and notify parents of Masses and liturgies both in the school and the Parish. 

St.Joseph’s regularly supports Parish events and fundraising e.g. CAFOD, Apostleship of the Sea shoebox Advent appeal and Lenten appeals.

Rosary
Children Praying
Liturgy and collective worship

Our Catholic faith is central to day to day life of our school and all aspects of the curriculum, and pupils are encouraged to recognise the importance of their faith and they respond to all forms of liturgy and collective worship with respect and reverence.

We have a rich liturgical life in that the experiences we provide are wide ranging and take place in school, out of school, in Church and the wider community, and engage and involve pupils, parents, staff, governors and the parish. The Celebration of the Eucharist and prayer are central in our school.

Our Parish Priest regularly celebrates Mass in School.  In addition, we celebrate School Masses at the beginning and end of term and on other significant occasions such as All Saints.  Our Parish Priest makes regular visits to classes which further enhances children’s knowledge, skills and helps them to develop a deeper understanding of their faith.

At St Joseph’s we strive to create a stimulating environment so that by learning, playing and working together, we openly follow Christ’s teachings. We seek to offer every person the opportunity to be a unique and valued individual, sharing and developing belief in the teachings of Jesus through everyday relationships and mutual respect in our dealings with one another.

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As part of this we aim that our Academy offers:

  • A welcoming, secure and caring environment in which all can happily work;

  • A broad, balanced and relevant curriculum of the highest standard to meet their spiritual, emotional, moral, intellectual and physical needs and to prepare them for the responsibilities of adult life;

  • A spirit of care, generosity, forgiveness and equal opportunity within our multicultural community through prayer and living our faith.

  • A a worshiping community by celebrating meaningful and appropriate liturgy and ensuring that prayer life is nourished, guided and developed.