The Education Service

Schools Bulletin: November 2015

Dear Colleague in Catholic Education,

Next month sees the start of the Year of Mercy and the Diocese has produced resources and materials for all of our schools to use. They will be made available on the Diocesan website at the start of December for a formal launch in January 2016. I am grateful to Marie Fahy, of Gumley House, and the Diocesan schools’ working party who have produced these materials for all our staff and students. They include advice on a Door of Mercy for each school; prose and writing competitions; assemblies; and music and videos.  You will receive a launch pack in December and I am delighted to announce that the Cardinal will be celebrating Mass for representatives’ from all our Primary Schools on March 2nd 2016 at 2.15pm at Westminster Cathedral. Further details will follow.

The Diocese is delighted to announce that a new independent Catholic School for Girls is to be opened next September. St Anthony’s School for Girls will be located in Ivy House, North End Road, NW11. It is the partner school of St Anthony’s School for Boys in Hampstead. The partnership with the Alpha Plus Group has allowed this to happen and will open for classes in Reception and Year 3 in 2016. It is hoped that in time the school will accommodate up to 200 girls.

I am very conscious that as a result of my frequent visit to schools the challenge that may of you are facing in terms of financial restrictions; staffing shortages; budget cuts and curriculum assessment changes. It is a challenge you do not face alone. The Diocese is about to undertake a financial health check of our schools and as a result of this check we will be offering advice and direction on how best to cope in the months ahead. I would be most grateful for your full cooperation with this research. Bishop Sherrington has written to all schools in regard to the importance of compliance in the accounting of assets, please ensure you aware of this letter.

Lisa Barton, Head at St Bernadette Catholic Primary School, London Colney, has been in contact with various Universities trying to secure teachers in the long term for her school and has formed a relationship with St Mary's University, Belfast. They are currently looking for placements for students for two weeks in both Primary and Secondary schools. There is a strong motive on the part of the students to secure placements in England so that they can secure work here after their studies are complete.

You can you email Lisa directly on head@stbernadette.herts.sch.uk and record your school name in the Heading Box with "Teacher recruitment" and then let her know;

a) How many students you would want and can accommodate.

b) Lisa would also need to know whether it is primary or secondary and in the case of the latter, the number of subject specialists you would wish to take.

Full details of this initiative can be found attached to this Bulletin.

The details of the Headteachers’ Conferences for 2016 will be published on 1st December 2015.

The Diocese has expanded its number of RE Advisers for Primary schools from three to four. I am delighted to welcome Theresa O’Sullivan who joins us in January 2016. Theresa currently teaches at St Joseph’s, Hendon and we look forward to her adding capacity to our experienced team. 

The Education Service has been working closely with schools to prepare them for the new GCSE and A Level in Religious Studies next year. It is important that schools comply with the directive regarding the study of Judaism.

We have a very important year ahead and together we make such a difference to the lives of those students in our care. My thanks to you for all the work you are doing to enrich the lives and promoting and supporting the spiritual experience and witness to faith in all our 75,000 students across the Diocese. 

Finally, many of you will know Ian McGibbon who has worked for many years in the Diocese with responsibility for Foundation Governor Services and Admission Policies. Ian will be retiring in November and I would like to take this opportunity to thank him for his professionalism and dedication to service in helping so many of our schools and governing bodies. We wish him many enjoyable years ahead.  

With best wishes

JP Morrison

Director of Education

SENIOR APPOINTMENTS

For the appointment of a Headteacher, Deputy Headteacher or teacher in charge of Religious Education, the Diocese must be invited to send a representative to the Appointments Panel. Please ensure that the shortlisting /interview  dates are set by prior arrangement with the Diocese. In the first instance, please contact Mike Pittendreigh, who has responsibility for senior appointments.

Contact: Mike Pittendreigh mikep@rcdow.org.uk

Admissions

Thank you to all those who have submitted their admission arrangements 2017-18 to the diocese.

If you have not yet sent your 2017-18 policy and SIF to the diocese please send them as a matter of urgency in order to comply with the new statutory timetable.

Many of you will be going out to consultation this year. For lists of consultees and draft letter, or for any other assistance please contact maryryan@rcdow.org.uk

Caritas Anchor House Learning & Development Academy

The Learning & Development Academy is a support facility of Caritas Anchor House and provides breakthrough life changing development workshops to school leaders, teachers, young people and school students helping nurture self-belief, raise aspirations and fulfil potential. Our flagship programme is “The Leader in Me” which with development modules founded on the established principles of Stephen Covey author of “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” and is designed to form part of the core ethos of all educational establishments and the community it forms part of, being as much about a journey of discovery for teachers, students and parents.

“We only get one chance to prepare children for a world none of us can possibly predict,

what are you going to do with that one chance?”

“The Leader in Me” comprises 8 individual modules following a young person’s journey through dependency, independence to interdependency:

•             Establishing self-belief - Understand the effect of limiting beliefs / recognise what is possible / know how to breakthrough and achieve whatever we put our mind to.

•             Developing personal effectiveness –Understand the choices we make / recognise what’s holding us back / know how to focus on creating solutions to the challenges we face.

•             Thinking creatively – Understand what’s important to us / recognise our hopes, dreams and ambitions / know where we want to be in the future.

•             Performing under pressure – Understand the nature of pressure / recognise the need to set clear priorities / know how to plan ahead.

•             Building relationships – Understand the implications and consequences of our behaviour / recognise the importance of integrity and trust / know how to build and maintain long term relationships.

•             Communicating confidently – Understand the ways we communicate / recognise what gets in the way of good communication / Know to listen and better understand people.

•             Leading and inspiring others – Understand the impact of our leadership style on others / recognise the qualities needed to lead and inspire / Know how to engage and motivate people.

•             Working in teams – Understand that we can achieve more when we work together in teams / recognise and value the differences in others / know how to build successful teams.

The outcome from completing these modules will be:

•             Take more responsibility

•             Become more accountable

•             Increase in self-confidence, self-belief and self-esteem

•             Handle pressure better

•             Make smarter decisions

•             Define, values and what matters most to them

•             Identify and prioritise their goals

•             Gain greater control of their lives

•             Communicate more effectively

•             Improve their relationships

•             Work successfully in teams

•             Be able to lead and inspire others

Further details of this programme can be found in the leaflets attached to this bulletin.

Good News Slot

(Please note: this section of the Communique consists of good news which have been sent in from schools around the diocese.  It may well be that others have achieved similar awards or success and, if so, we congratulate them too! Please send your news to greenyl@rcdow.org.uk )

Many Congratulations to Our Lady and St Joseph Primary School, Tower Hamlets on receiving second place at the recent British Construction Industry  2015 Award Event.  The high commendation was awarded in the Building Project of the Year Category; Cardinal Pole School, Hackney on achieving outstanding again in 2015 for post 16 progress, for the third time in a row.  Jaime Allison, Assistant Headteacher with responsibility for the sixth form, was pleased that the efforts of staff and students were rewarded and hopes that the school will again secure their top 2% slot for progress nationally; St Gregory’s Science College, Brent on being awarded the Gold Club status for the second time by the Mayor of London.  Gold Club members are schools that have ‘bucked the trend’ by achieving exceptional outcomes for all their pupils, whatever their circumstances. Funded by the Mayor, the schools to school learning programme allows all schools across London to from the good practice of Gold Club schools in improving pupils’ aspirations and achievements.