Our Church School Foundation

Yatton Junior School was founded as a Church of England school. The school aims to provide an education of the highest quality within the contexts of Christian beliefs and practices.

Our Christian Vision:

We want to provide a happy, considerate, secure and supportive environment that promotes respect for self and others, valuing friendships and a life-long love of learning – life in all its fullness. (John 10:10.)

Our Goals:

  • Help children become happy, creative and confident.
  • Provide learning that realises the full potential of every child.
  • Provide the learning to develop skills that children will need to flourish in their future.
  • Provide an environment that encourages and enables human flourishing and fullness of life. (John 10:10)

Our Core Aims:

  • Achieve academic excellence by providing a broad curriculum that is stimulating, creative and which encourages enquiring minds, independent thinking and risk-taking.
  • Respect the views of all stakeholders with faith or no faith.
  • Develop a strong sense of school identity and belonging for all children and staff.
  • Strengthen partnerships with parents and community to promote social cohesion.
  • Foster and environment that promotes self-awareness and wider opportunities for learning, equipping children to flourish in an ever changing world.
  • Uphold standards of excellence in behaviours, nurturing positive attitudes towards learning.
  • Celebrate children’s achievements in a wide variety of fields, raising self-esteem and instilling a sense of pride.
  • Ensure staff feel supported and valued, enjoying their contribution to children’s education.

Our  Values:

Compassion          Courage          Equality          Forgiveness          Friendship          Generosity

Justice          Love          Peacefulness      Respect          Trust          Truthfulness

We share our vision, goals, values and aims with Yatton VC Infant School who are part of our school community too. We show this through our Mission Statement:

Together is better, achieving excellence in happy schools.

 

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We are very proud of our Church School distinctiveness. Our Vision underpins and drives everything we do in our school. It is built upon our Christian Values which form the basis of our collective worship and inform the way we learn and behave towards one another.

Our school’s Christian vision and values are at the heart of our curriculum provision, driving our commitment to provide the very best education for all children in a positive, inclusive and supportive environment.

We sometimes also have special days of activities during the year when the whole school has a time to reflect on a particular Christian Value or festival.  An Ethos Group meets regularly to evaluate and explore ways to further develop our Church School distinctiveness.  A Children’s Ethos Group meets to ensure that the children have a say in this self-evaluation process and they are involved in assisting and leading aspects of Collective Worship. We have close links with St Mary’s Church and other local churches. Worship leaders from the local community come in to lead services in school and the school celebrates key Christian festivals in St Mary’s. The children also visit the Church as part of the curriculum.

I learned about Friendship. Now I have more friends by being kind. (Y3 child)

I liked doing Forgiveness Day … actually made me think about fall outs with my friends. (Y4 child)

‘Courage’ gave me more belief in myself. (Y5 child)

Our Values make you question your behaviour and who you should forgive. (Y5 child)  

The Values help make you more respectful. (Y6 child)  

 

Collective Worship

Collective Worship forms an important part of our school day, providing an opportunity for all children to come together to praise, give thanks and reflect. A planner for collective worship is drawn up termly built around our Christian Values and significant religious festivals. As well as teaching staff, there are regular opportunities for children to play a part in planning and leading collective worship. Local worship leaders also come in regularly to lead and the ‘Open the Book’ assemblies – where a team of adults from local churches performs Bible stories to Y3/Y4 children – are proving to be an exciting and popular addition to our collective worship programme. The children recognise the significance of collective worship in the school and can often identify ways in which exploring Christian values has had an impact upon how they behave towards others:

I learned about Friendship. Now I have more friends by being kind. (Y3 child)

I liked doing Forgiveness Day … actually made me think about fall outs with my friends. (Y4 child)

‘Courage’ gave me more belief in myself. (Y5 child)

Our Values make you question your behaviour and who you should forgive. (Y5 child)  

The Values help make you more respectful. (Y6 child)

Here is our current overview of the values and themes being covered in collective worship this term:

Collective worship planner Term 1 and 2 2020-21

Bible Reading

Each week children across the school read a passage from their Children’s Bible which is linked to the current Christian Value being explored or to key Christian festivals in the church calendar.  Meanings or messages from the Bible story of the week are regularly discussed in class or developed further in collective worship.

Our current Values in Term 1 2020: GENEROSITY

God’s generosity can be described as ‘grace’, love given freely without limit or conditions. This generosity, once experienced and acknowledged by an individual, can release a generous spirit towards others.

Bible Readings associated with Generosity (page numbers refer to the Children’s Bibles the children use in school):

‘A Special Act’ p246 [Luke 7] – the gift of perfume. Why did Jesus consider the woman to be so generous?  What links are there to other values?

‘Nothing to Drink’ and ‘Nothing to Eat’ p74-75 [Exodus 15-16].

How have other people provided for you when you have been in need? Have you helped other people in need?

‘Healing and Teaching’ p368 [Acts 2}. Acts tells the stories of how Jesus’s followers continued his work after they received the Holy Spirit (you might want to read the previous pages p366-367 which describe this). Giving isn’t just about money or possessions– how can you be generous in other ways?

 

Opportunities for Prayer and Reflection

As well as in Collective Worship, children are given other opportunities for thoughtful reflection and prayer, for example in Jigsaw PSHE sessions. A prayer corner is provided where children can read prayers or bibles, share their own prayers on the ‘Prayer Tree’ or place their more personal prayers in the prayer box. The School feels very much supported by the Yatton Prayer Group who have regular contact with the Headteacher to pray for the school  community and respond to the prayers placed in our prayer box by the children.

The Prayer Box ….

“helps you think about other people and try to help others”. (Y3 child)

“helps ease any worries”. (Y4 child)

“makes me feel better”. (Y5 child)

SMSC – Spiritual, Moral, Social, Cultural education.

Here you can read about some of the many SMSC opportunities we provide for the children:   SMSC at Yatton Juniors

We very much welcome your thoughts and ideas on how to further develop and enhance our Ethos and Church School distinctiveness. Please contact us with your views and suggestions!