Worship

Approved by the Board of Directors: November 2014

Review date: July 2017

Daily Act of Worship

Every pupil shares in a daily act of worship. This meets the requirements of the 1988 Education Act, which states that every pupil must attend an act of worship every day and that these acts of worship should be “predominantly Christian”. Collective worship is an important part of our life as a Church school. Tutors have a vital responsibility to support the Christian ethos of the school. This can be achieved through a positive support of the worship areas of school life. If pupils see that staff are positive about providing the opportunity for worship during tutor time this will also benefit what takes place in assemblies and in celebrations of Eucharist.

Principles

Guidance for Church Schools in Chichester Diocese states that collective worship:

  • Should provide opportunities for pupils to encounter the traditions and tenets of the Anglican Church
  • Should be explicitly Christian, unlike in community schools where “worship that is broadly Christian” is the norm. [please see Section 9, below]
  • The opportunity for collective worship in school is part of pupils’ spiritual and educational development as they experience varied religious and spiritual practices. The habit of setting aside a short time of stillness for careful thought / prayer is to be encouraged
  • Reflection about some area of wonder or concern taken from real life situations or subject specific parts of the curriculum can involve pupils in the spiritual dimension of human life. Within that time of quiet pupils can also be invited to pray if they find it meaningful
  • The opportunity for worship can be developed much further and this is to be encouraged
  • Active involvement of pupils in preparing and/or leading worship can enhance the experience and provide a sense of ownership
  • Worship Commendations are presented at the end of each term for pupils who have contributed to school worship as helpers in services and/or in tutor worship. Tutors and Heads of House are advised to keep a note of who has contributed, as this will help when recommending pupils for commendations and when writing reports

The Clergy Team

For many years the school has benefited from the involvement of clergy from the parishes and Christian communities that support our students. The varied Christian backgrounds and styles of the Clergy Team members allow pupils to have a richness of experience. Also, the clergy team is a testimony to positive denominational partnership.

The Bishop Luffa Clergy Team provides continuity of contact with students. Each member is dedicated to a Year Group. As well as leading assemblies and having a role in other aspects of school worship (Eucharists, Tutor Time). Clergy Team members are also involved in other Year Group activities; such as educational visits and classroom work. Our aim is for purposeful collaboration about worship between the Clergy Team, students and staff. In particular, Heads of House and Tutors are encouraged to meet with their Clergy Team member.

Year Clergy Team
Sixth Form: Reverend John Dane, Chaplain to the University of Chichester
Year 11: Pastor Bruno Kondabeka, Chichester Family Church
Year 10: Reverend Jo King, St Thomas a'Becket's Church, Pagham
Year 9: Mr Andy Morgan, Young People’s Worker, Chichester Baptist Church
Year 8: Reverend Sheila Higgins, The Parish of Aldingbourne, Barnham & Eastergate
Year 7: 

Practice

Good practice is to display the termly worship programme of themes (hard copies to be used as rotas are provided via registers). Tutors can add names of pupils who are to read from the worship materials / lead the worship time. Pupils often prefer to lead as a pair (allocating two pupils per day is also helpful in case of pupil absence).

‘Thought for the Day’

At Monday’s Staff Briefing each week, a member of the RE Team (Mr Richard Shurmer) introduce the weekly theme. Thoughts relating to each weekly theme are available for all staff via Bishop Luffa e-mail. Tutors use this material for classroom projection and/or provide hard copies for use during tutor worship. Themes for each week are provided on a termly worship programme and the weekly bulletin.

Weekly worship materials contain suggested readings, prayers and ideas for reflection. These offer suggestions and staff should feel free to develop worship that is imaginative and relevant to the needs of their group. Another worship resource available to staff is the Reboo web material: http://www.reboo.co.uk/ Teachers will find that pupils respond to worship in a variety of ways. While some will find it familiar and meaningful, others may be less responsive. It is important to provide opportunity for worship in a positive and supportive environment. People cannot be compelled to worship and the integrity of pupils and staff should be respected at all times. However, it is also clear that pupils respond more positively to worship time when is presented well. Tutors should make time for worship a regular, and therefore expected part of the pattern in tutorial activities. Pupils will relate better to the opportunity of worship through the establishment of a familiar routine.

Tutors will develop their own routines but a suggested starting point might be:

  • begin with pupils silent and seated;
  • register;
  • continue in quiet with worship time;
  • conclude with a prayer and the grace;
  • then move to the busier time of notices and other activities.

Members of the Clergy Team are happy to join tutor groups for worship during tutorial time. Termly visits are arranged by the Worship Coordinator. If you would like extra visits, please make requests to them directly and inform Heads of House and the Worship Coordinator. Variation in the type of content and ways of presenting collective worship will allow for varying approaches to religion among the people of each group.

If staff need support with aspects of worship at Bishop Luffa, please speak to the Head, Mr Shurmer or your Head of House.

Arrangements for Assembly

All pupils will have an act of worship every morning. This will usually be within their house group. On at least one occasion each week they will share an act of worship with their whole year group or their House group according to this pattern:

  Week A Week B
Monday Year 11 Andrewes/Burrows
Tuesday Year 10 King/Otter
Wednesday

Year 9

Year 12 or Year 13

Sixth Form
Thursday Year 8 Ridgeway/Sherborne
Friday Year 7 Story/Wilson

* = alternate Wk. A in The Bridge Club

Assembly Seating Plan Years 7–11

[ STAGE ]
WILSON STORY SHERBORNE RIDGEWAY
BELL BURROWS KING OTTER
[STEPS of the Dining Strip ]
(30 chairs in each House block. 8 blocks of 5 chairs across and 6 rows deep)

The caretaking staff put out chairs.  A copy of the assembly rota for the current term is displayed on the notice board in the Bartlett Hall. On the day of their Year Assembly, tutors should be in the Bartlett Hall by 8 a.m. to supervise their groups and to maintain quiet; creating the right atmosphere before worship time. As tutors will not be present at Morning Briefing on the day of their assembly they will be e-mailed information from the briefing. Notes from Morning Briefing are also posted on the Head’s noticeboard by 10 am. Pupils should bring with them all that they need for morning lessons.

Belongings should be placed in the Small Hall. Do not allow pupils to leave them in front of the wood panelling or in other unsightly places. Tutors should ensure that the pupils are sitting in the correct spaces, filling up their allocation of chairs from the front. Standing at the front of your block, initially, to register your group will help behaviour. Be pro-active by separating pupils who may cause problems if they sit together and seat pupils who need extra supervision near to you. Please sit at the back of your own groups so that you can see any problems of behaviour. Inappropriate behaviour should be dealt with immediately and in the same way that disruptive or anti-social actions are dealt with elsewhere in school.

After assembly, pupils go straight to lesson one.

Groups or individuals who would like to lead the worship in a Year assembly are very welcome to do so. Staff are also encouraged to lead assemblies or parts of an assembly. This could be on their own or with a group of pupils. Please see Mr Shurmer if you would like to know more.

Assembly rotas are prepared before the beginning of each term.

Eucharists

There is no Year Assembly on the day of a Eucharist.  Kindly allow any helpers [with readings, role play, prayers, serving] to come to the Bartlett Hall as soon as they have been registered. Tutors accompany the rest of your group to arrive in the hall at 8.20, for a period 1 start.

Tutors should:

  • At the planning stage, encourage volunteers and help prepare them to contribute prayers / reading at Eucharist. (Memoranda requesting volunteers are circulated to tutors a few weeks before the Eucharist. A combination of public announcement to the Tutor group and private invitation to individuals tends to work best)
  • Read circulated instructions about practicalities and expectations of behaviour of the Eucharist. (These instructions are sent out in time for groups and, when necessary, individuals to be advised on more than one occasion)
  • At the Eucharist, be pro-active by directing where particular pupils sit (separate pupils who are likely to chat and seat those who need extra supervision near to you)
  • Correct any pupil who is disrespectful or thoughtless about the needs of others. Seek help from senior staff when required. (We should expect the same standards of behaviour in Eucharist as in any other school activity)
  • Guide pupils when going forward for communion and maintain good order
  • Do please ask for advice if you are unsure about any aspects of school worship

Review

Worship in school is reviewed as part of the biennial cycle of subject and Faculty reviews. The last Worship Review took place in June 2014.

Some general principles

Collective Worship in the church school context should

  • recognise that the community is a collection of people from a variety of cultural, faith and non-faith backgrounds reflecting the diversity of society
  • be inclusive and interpreted in a way which is meaningful and sensitive to the range of communities
  • offer quality experiences of worship which reflect the Christian foundation of the school and provide opportunities for the school community to encounter Anglican traditions
  • meet the meet the needs of all members of the school community and allow individuals to respond as individuals, including those pupils with special educational needs and higher achieving pupils
  • be planned to meet the needs of all pupils through use of a variety of strategies (including singing and instrumental music; visual stimuli such as artefacts, pictures or special objects; stories, particularly those which enable pupils to come to terms with personal experiences through their capacity to promote self-reflection and understanding of the thoughts and feelings of others and drama, mime or dramatic reading)
  • provide opportunities for pupils to encounter the traditions and tenets of the Anglican Church
  • be explicitly Christian, unlike in community schools where “worship that is broadly Christian” is the norm
  • be implemented in a way that is consistent with whole school values, aims and purposes
  • not pre-suppose shared beliefs, and should not seek uniform responses from pupils
  • be separate from Religious Education. Collective Worship is not designated curriculum time under regulations and should not be subsumed under any part of the curriculum. The act of Collective Worship must be distinctive and identifiable if it is to meet the legal requirements

In spirit and in truth:
Guidance on Collective Worship
in Church of England schools
in the Diocese of Chichester
June 2012