From the Interim Director
As you read this, I will be on the other side of the world in Australia! When Bishop John asked me to take on the role of Interim Director, I explained that I had a commitment to present at a conference in Australia and the dates were fixed. Unfortunately, this means I will be away from the diocese from 26th June 2013 until 22nd July 2013. Thanks to Skype and other electronic means, I will be able to continue my work, albeit more remotely.
I am particularly sorry that I will not be present for the Headteachers’ Conference on 2nd July 2013. Archbishop Vincent will be the keynote speaker and, I know, he will be asking our headteachers some very challenging questions. As well as this there will be an opportunity to celebrate mass together and say farewell to those colleagues who are retiring. Along with the opportunity to meet with colleague heads and enjoy a decent lunch, it all adds to my disappointment at not being able to join you.
It has been a real pleasure getting to know so many of you over the recent weeks, and I look forward to working alongside you in the coming term. The Education Commission will continue in its search for the next Director of Education, and I know they continue to welcome your views and ideas regarding the future of the Service. Please send any comments to me on firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally, as we approach the end of this academic year, may I take this opportunity of thanking you for your work, wishing you a pleasant and restful holiday, and looking forward to working with you in the new term.
Secondary Deputy Head Teachers’ Conference
7th October - 9th October 2013, Kent
Next year’s annual Diocesan Secondary Deputy Head Teachers’ Conference will focus on the theme of The Year of Faith – A Spirit of Renewal. The aim of the conference will be to provide time to reflect on Catholic school leadership, to provide practical support in relation to the specific role of Deputy Head Teacher and also to create a valuable opportunity to meet colleagues and share good practice. We are very fortunate to have secured David Wells as our keynote speaker. David is internationally renowned and was very well received by the Head Teachers at their Diocesan Conference earlier in the year. All schools are strongly encouraged to send at least one representative. Further details will be sent to schools shortly.
Contact: Amanda Crowley, email@example.com, 020 7798 9005
Update on Admission Arrangements 2015 – 2016
Oversubscription Criterion 1
This criterion currently provides priority for adopted children, as well as looked-after children and those subject to residence and special guardianship orders. The definition of adoption according to the School Admissions Code is:
‘Adopted’. An adopted child is a child who is adopted under the terms of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 s.46 (adoption orders).
However, this Act only applies to children adopted in Britain from 2005 onwards. Having this definition in your policy may be problematic for schools and result in appeals. Governors may wish to consider removing this definition for 2015-2016 and accepting all applications for Catholic adopted children as coming under criterion 1. The same will apply to the applications for non-Catholic adopted children who come under a subsequent criterion. There are no problems with the definitions of looked-after, residence or special guardianship orders, which can remain as they are. The latest version of the diocesan model policy (St Pollyanna) will reflect this change.
Also a brief reminder to put the consideration of admission arrangements for 2015-2016 on the agenda for the first governing body meeting of the new school year. Please then send the policy and SIF to the diocese regardless of whether or not any changes are being made.
Please contact: Mary Ryan, firstname.lastname@example.org
The John Paul II Foundation for Sport
The John Paul II Foundation for Sport is delighted to announce a new series of educational resources Values in Action for KS2/3, KS4 and church/youth work settings. These easy to use resources are designed to help explore the wider benefits that participating in sport can bring, and to encourage and celebrate the achievement of physical, intellectual, emotional and spiritual potential. Curriculum links for teachers are also included. An order form is included with this communication for your convenience.
For more information please contact the JP2F4S office on email@example.com or 020 7422 6631.
The Follower in the Year of Faith
The Fourth edition of The Follower magazine will be published and distributed to schools in September. Each edition of The Follower in the Year of Faith provides information on the work of the different diocesan agencies and departments and is loosely based on a theme – the fourth edition is on prayer and spirituality. If you wish to share some information on how your school has marked the Year of Faith please send any pictures and text to firstname.lastname@example.org. The magazine is intended for school and parish leaders and is an excellent forum for sharing what you are doing. Previous editions can be seen at http://rcdow.org.uk/year-of-faith/schools/.
Faith-sharing in autumn 2013
The Autumn 2013 faith-sharing resource from the Diocese of Westminster will be on prayer and is provisionally entitled Teach Us, Lord (based on Luke 11:1-4). It will be used by thousands of people across the diocese during the season which will last from 13 October to 23 November, though the booklets can be used at any time of year. Some schools have used them in the past with older pupils and for staff prayer. To register your interest please email email@example.com.
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! Please send your news to firstname.lastname@example.org )
St Thomas More School, Haringey for being singled out by the Sutton Trust because it fell in the highest category for raising the attainment of those that come from inner-city backgrounds; also one of their trainee teachers – Mr Neil Ameh was runner-up in the Outstanding New Teacher of the Year Awards; St Swithun Wells Primary School, Ruislip for being awarded the Inclusion Quality Mark; Our Lady of the Visitation Primary School, Ealing for being awarded the Basic Skills Quality Mark; Sion Manning School for coming 1st and Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School for coming second in the Kensington and Chelsea Art Festival; Sister Brenda Wallace FCJ, recently retired Head of Gumley House School, for being awarded the OBE for Services to Education in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.