The Education Service

School Bulletin: September 2012

From Paul Barber

From:

Paul Barber

Director of Education

paulbarber@rcdow.org.uk

020 7798 9005

At the Start of the new Academic Year …

NEW PATHWAYS

"All pathways by His feet are worn…-" (Joseph Plunkett)

May your new work excite your heart,

And kindle in your mind a creativity,

To journey together along new pathways

Beyond old limits that have become wearisome.

May this work challenge you as new frontiers emerge,

And you begin to approach them from different pathways.

Calling forth from you the full force and depth

of your undiscovered gifts.

May the work fit the rhythms of your soul

Enabling you to draw from the invisible new ideas

New hopes, new challenges

And a vision that will inspire.

Remember to be kind

To yourself - and to those you work for.

Endeavour to remain aware of the quiet world

That lives behind each face.

Be fair in your expectations

Compassionate in your criticism with the grace of encouragement.

May you awaken in others gifts to delight the world

Building confidence to follow the call of the gift.

May this new beginning - this new pathway

Be worthy of the energy of your heart,

the light of your thoughts,

The beauty and form of your calling.

 

May your work, along this new pathway,

Lead you to a proper space in your life.

May it challenge you and refine you - not own or use you,

Bringing you each day to the wonder of your heart.

Welcome to new Colleagues

We are delighted to welcome Amanda Crowley as a new member of the Advisory Team. We also extend a welcome to all new colleagues who are beginning a new phase of their careers in our schools, whether as teachers, support staff or governors.  We hope that your new role will prove enjoyable and fruitful.  A special welcome and congratulations to all the new headteachers in the Diocese who took up their posts this September (or earlier or later as indicated):

 

Mr Paolo Duran – St Edmund’s College, Ware

Mr Julian Ward – St Michael’s Grammar, Finchley

Mr Paul Neves – John F Kennedy School, Hertfordshire

Mr Paul Kassapian – Salvatorian College, Harrow

Mr Clive Mathew – John Henry Newman School, Stevenage

Mrs Ewa Kolczynska – Gumley House Convent School

 

Mrs Sarah Alley – Our Lady of Dolours Primary School, Westminster (appointed April 2012)

Ms Evelyn Ward – Holy Family Primary School, Ealing (appointed April 2012)

Miss Hayley Bloomfield – St Augustine’s Primary School, Hoddesdon

Miss Barbara Costa – Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School, Finchley (appointed January 2012)

Mrs Mary Bickerstaff – Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School, Willesden (appointed March 2012)

Mrs Clare Walsh – Mount Carmel Primary School, Ealing

Mrs Sarah Raffray – St Augustine’s Priory School, Ealing

Mrs Jennifer O’Prey – St Dominic’s Primary School, Camden

Mrs Sheila Mouna – St Anne’s Primary School, Whitechapel

Mrs Yvonne Devereux – St Paul’s Primary School, Cheshunt

Mrs Tressa Paczek – The Rosary Primary School, Hounslow

Mrs Michelle Keating – St Thomas of Canterbury Primary School, Puckeridge

Mr Peter Gair – St Edward’s Primary School, Westminster

Mr Tony Gorton – St Joseph’s Primary School, Waltham Cross

Mr Stephen Wheatley* – The Holy Rood Primary School, Watford – (NB takes up appointment from 1st January 2013)

Mrs Gillian Hood – St Gildas Primary School, Wood Green

 

Interim Heads

Mrs Angela McNicholas – Our Lady of Muswell Primary, Haringey

Ms Virginia Fraher – St Joseph’s Primary School, Chelsea

 

Safeguarding Procedures  ANNUAL REMINDER 

Schools are reminded of their duty to be familiar with and follow the safeguarding procedures established by their Local Safeguarding Children Board. Internal procedures should be reviewed on an annual basis to ensure that they meet the requirements of the local Board. Further information can be obtained from the Child Protection section of the Department for Education website (http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/pupilsupport/pastoralcare/childprotection). The same site provides the DfE suggested child protection policy which complies with these requirements. 

Appointment of Heads, Deputies and Assistant Heads  ANNUAL REMINDER 

The Chair of Governors must ensure that he or she notifies the Diocesan Director of Education about a vacancy for a head teacher or deputy head teacher before taking any action, including appointing an acting headteacher, or advertising the vacancy. This also applies to assistant head teachers in schools where there is no deputy head teacher. All these posts are reserved for practising Catholics only. Paul Barber, as Director of Education for the Diocese of Westminster wishes any notification about vacancies for the posts mentioned above to be communicated to Josephine Lewis, Deputy Director. Josephine will then coordinate diocesan representation in this process. If a maintained school has accorded advisory rights to the local authority, the school must also inform the appropriate local authority Officer of the vacancy.

Contact: Josephine Lewis on 020 7798 9005 or email josephinelewis@rcdow.org.uk

Governors: Election of Chair and Vice Chair* ANNUAL REMINDER 

The governing body must elect a chair and vice chair. The regulations do not prescribe the process, which is left to governors to organise. It is good practice though to agree on the procedure for the election at the meeting before. It is usual that the election takes place at the first meeting of the Autumn Term. The head teacher and or other school employees are disqualified from standing for these offices. For those governing bodies that are in the process of electing chairs and vice chairs it is timely to remind them that the chair has a vital role in ensuring that the governors share with the staff and parents the school’s aims and objectives and that these are at the forefront of all that they undertake. There is an expectation that the chair will be a foundation governor: the importance of the chair being a Catholic cannot be overestimated if due regard is to be given to promoting the Catholic ethos in all aspects of school life. It is to be hoped, therefore, that foundation governors will prepare themselves to stand for election as chair. Once a new chair and vice-chair have been elected this must be notified immediately by the clerk to the Education Service: governors@rcdow.org.uk  This ensures that our database is correct and saves much time and inconvenience.

Governors: Notification of Changes  ANNUAL REMINDER 

It is also important that all resignations of governors are notified to the diocese. This is also true for new appointments or elections of governors (other than diocesan foundation governors). Often the diocese is not informed of the election of new parent or staff governors. Please send the information to: governors@rcdow.org.uk

 

Minutes of Governing Body Meetings ANNUAL REMINDER  

The minutes of all full governing body meetings should be sent by the clerk to the governors to the diocese. Please send electronic copies (preferred) to: education@rcdow.org.uk (please note change of e-mail address).

Contact: Josephine Lewis on 020 7798 9005 or email josephinelewis@rcdow.org.uk

Governors: Appointment Process ANNUAL REMINDER  

A reminder that foundation governors are not appointed by governing bodies, but by the Bishop or relevant religious superior. Diocesan Foundation Governors are appointed from among those who offer to serve the Diocese in this capacity – the appointment process includes consideration of which school can best benefit from what each volunteer can offer. Governing bodies are therefore asked to continue to encourage suitable volunteers to offer their services, regardless of whether their particular school has any current vacancies. Full details on how to offer to serve can be found on our website. To avoid misunderstanding, governing bodies should not indicate that appointments will be made to any particular school, nor invite candidates to take part in governing body meetings until the diocese has indicated that an appointment will be made to that governing body.

Admissions: Choosing a Catholic School – Secondary Prospectus ANNUAL REMINDER 

The Diocesan Secondary Prospectus for Admission in September 2013 is available on the Diocesan Website. We ask all Primary schools to ensure that a copy is given to the parents of all Year 6 pupils. Following the advice in the Prospectus fully will ensure, to a degree approaching certainty, a place in a Catholic secondary school. Almost all complaints received each year following 1st March are from parents who have not followed the advice in the Prospectus. For some this is because they are not aware of its existence until it is too late. Please help us to prevent that from happening this year.

Contact Mary Ryan  maryryan@rcdow.org.uk  Tel: 020 7798 9005 

Appointment of Committees*  ANNUAL REMINDER 

Governing bodies are reminded of the need for the annual appointment of standing committees, particularly those legally required but which may not be used often or at all. These include the exclusion appeal, staff disciplinary and staff appeal committees. Governing bodies should ensure that all committees have clear terms of reference, containing limits of delegation and a clear procedure for reporting back to the full governing body.

Adoption of CES Model Procedures*   ANNUAL REMINDER 

Governing bodies are reminded of the need to adopt the CES Model Procedures for Capability, Grievance, Sickness Absence and Discipline, as well as the Diocesan Complaints Policy. These policies were revised in 2012 and conform to recent legislation.

Contact: Mike Pittendreigh mikep@rcdow.org.uk

Occupation of School Premises  ANNUAL REMINDER 

Governing bodies occupy their school premises on behalf of their Trustees. For schools in diocesan trusteeship, the parameters within which they do so are set out clearly in the Trustees’ document “Occupation of School Premises” which can be found on the diocesan website: Click here. In the case of a school in the trusteeship religious order – apply to the religious order for details of the conditions under which the governing body occupies the site.

The Role of Parish Clergy on Governing Bodies ANNUAL REMINDER  

A reminder that all clergy are encouraged to serve on school governing bodies. In particular, Parish Priests are expected to be a governor of the primary school or schools which serve their parish, and deaneries are expected to nominate clergy to serve on the governing bodies of secondary schools serving the deanery. A parish priest should not, however be a member of the admissions committee of the governing body, and should not normally accept nomination as chair of governors unless there are exceptional circumstances. Clergy governor appointments are made by the diocese: contact Josephine Lewis for further details.

Contact: Josephine Lewis on 020 7798 9005 or email josephinelewis@rcdow.org.uk

Appointment of Chaplains ANNUAL REMINDER

A reminder that the appointment of a Chaplain in any Catholic school cannot take place without the prior approval of the Bishop. This can be a complex area, and any school contemplating the appointment of a Chaplain should consult diocesan guidance (at http://www.rcdow.org.uk/education/default.asp?parent_ref=229&library_ref=8&content_ref=997) before taking any action. This will ensure that they proceed appropriately and avoid any potential problems. 

Schools’ Bulletin ANNUAL REMINDER 

This particular bulletin is only be sent to schools electronically. Normally a hard copy of the Bulletin is sent to all Head Teachers and Chairs of Governors. It is also available via the diocesan website and an e-mail alert is available. Chairs of Governors are asked to ensure that copies are made available to ALL governors as well as the Clerk to the Governing Body.

Radiating Christ

To coincide with the Year of Faith and the synod of bishops meeting in Rome to discuss the New Evangelisation, the Diocese of Westminster in collaboration with the Home Mission Desk at the Bishop’s Conference of England and Wales have produced a booklet for groups and families to share their faith and to reflect on Scripture. The booklet takes its title, ‘Radiating Christ’, from Blessed John Henry Newman’s poem of the same name. Over the course of six group sessions, and by using other materials included in the booklet, participants will explore the nature of faith, the person of Jesus, the gift of the Body of Christ and the essential mission of the Church – to spread the Good News. These booklets could be used by staff and older pupils for prayer and as an impetus to a further exploration of their faith. To pre-order copies contact Mark Nash on 020 7931 6043 or email exploringfaith@rcdow.org.uk. The cover price is just £1.50 per booklet, however schools in Westminster can obtain copies for £1 each. 

Good News Slot

(Please note: this section of the bulletin 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!)

St Martin of Porres Primary, Haringey: eight of their pupils were the inaugural winners of the Tri-Golf competition at the Balfour Beatty London Youth Games.  220 Primary school children took part in the event representing 22 London boroughs.