The Education Service

Schools Bulletin: October 2013

From the Interim Director

You will by now have received the message from Bishop John Sherrington that John Paul (known as JP) Morrison has been appointed as Director of Education with effect from 1st January 2014. This is excellent news and JP will be greatly welcomed by all in the Education Service. There are many challenges facing the new Director, but my experience as Interim Director has given me an insight into the wealth of talent and goodwill that exists in our schools. Every request I have made of colleagues in our schools has been met by a positive response and a wish to contribute to the overall success of the Church’s educational mission in Westminster.

The excellent examination results achieved by our schools this summer offer further proof of the quality of work going on in support of our youngsters. I know that when I return to being a member of the Education Commission in the New Year our schools will continue to thrive, supported by a re-invigorated Education Service under the leadership of its new Director.

We are very conscious that the service we offer to schools with regard to the appointment of governors has not been as it should be recently. This has been due to a number of unforeseen circumstances and is something that we are determined to rectify in the next few weeks. Please bear with us.

Following the departure of the Deputy Director, Josephine Lewis, at the start of the summer holiday, we have done what we can to cover her workload. My time commitment to the diocese together with that of Sister Mary Jo Martin has increased. In addition to her work on inspections Sister will make further contributions to the work of the Service, particularly in the area of governor training. Mike Pittendreigh has taken on responsibility for Senior Appointments, and I will be continuing Josephine’s work with the National College and other national initiatives. These are the key changes, but I am grateful to the many colleagues who have generously given of their time to help us through these temporary shortages.


Kate Griffin 


The Living Wage – briefing and implementation plan for Catholic Schools

The Diocese of Westminster and the public service union UNISON  have agreed to work together to support and celebrate Catholic Schools implementing the Living Wage. This agreement follows the passing of a Living Wage resolution by the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales in November 2012. As part of our joint work we have circulated a Living Wage briefing and model implementation plan to all Catholic schools in the Diocese (please see enclosed document and PDF on the website)

The briefing sets out in an incremental approach the practical steps that a school will need to take to become a fully ‘accredited’ Living Wage employer. The Diocese is ‘recommending’ that allCatholic Schools in the Diocese both fully consider and adopt this plan. We would be grateful if you would give this matter consideration and return the enclosed feedback form.

Contact: Mike Pittendreigh


The Inspection Committee has produced its first annual report on Diocesan Inspection since the introduction of the new Framework.  This has been e mailed to all schools with the bulletin.  We would ask heads to make this available to their governors and subject leaders in religious education. Any comments or questions arising from the report can be made to Sister Mary Jo at the contact details below.

Contact   mobile: 07881 641575  Vaughan House:  020 7798 9190


Please note the new courses which are running as part of the Diocesan CPD program this year.  The Catholicism Unpacked courses were introduced at the request of schools to help provide for staff who would like more background knowledge about the Catholic faith.  This may apply to non-Catholic staff, but also to those who are Catholic but would like a little more grounding in their faith.  The sessions are open to all members of staff, not just teaching, and of course Leadership and members of the Governing Body are particularly welcome.  

The courses would not be appropriate for RE subject specialists.

Each term a different aspect of the Catholic faith will be covered.  This Autumn Term we are exploring Key Catholic Beliefs and to enable as many people to attend as possible, four separate venues across the Diocese will be used.

  • St Mary’s Priory Federated Infant and Junior Schools, South Tottenham – 17th October 1:30 – 4pm
  • St Edmund’s Primary School, Whitton – 24th October 1:30 – 4pm
  • Vaughan House – 12th November 1:30 – 4pm
  • Niland Centre, Bushey – 28th November 1:30 – 4pm


This is a wonderful opportunity to gain a greater insight into the Catholic faith.  

We would be very grateful to all Headteachers if you could please encourage staff and governors to attend.  

Further details are available in the CPD booklet, along with booking information.  If you have any questions please contact Amanda Crowley - 02077989005


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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 )

St Joseph’s Junior School, Wembley for continuing to be the most successful sporting school in Brent and achieving No.1 status in the UK in Sportshall Athletics; St Thomas More, Wood Green, Haringey for winning Best Production in the Rudolph Walker inter-school Drama Awards; St Aloysius Infant School, Camden on being presented Level 1 of the Stephen Lawrence Education Standard by the Mayor of Leeds; Our Lady’s Primary, Hitchin, Mrs Kelly Rose represented England at the European Championships in Barcelona for Tae Kwando.  Kelly won four silver medals and one bronze.  School says her sporting abilities and understanding of the PE Curriculum are an asset to the school; St Bernadette’s Primary School in Kenton celebrate the school’s 60th Anniversary Jubilee Year.  The Archbishop celebrated Mass back in May and school says celebrations will be taking place throughout the year and any past teachers and pupils will be welcome; St Thomas More Wood Green again for achievingone of the“top school in the country” awards for their 2013 GCSE results/similar schools performance tables. David Laws MP, Minister of State for Schools congratulated the school on being one of the top 56 performing secondary schools in England on this measure; St Bernadette’s Primary School, London Colney, St Albans won Primary Sports School of the Year in St Albans.  The school were also finalists in “Maintaining the Legacy” in the Innovation Project of the Year.