‘Pupils are confident that teachers and other staff are always there for them if needed and told the inspector, ‘Our teachers are special and they do anything for us.’ OFSTED 2015
‘The school’s clear commitment to equal opportunity and to tackling any form of discrimination is demonstrated by the good achievement of all groups of pupils.’ OFSTED 2015
Each classroom has a space set aside for reflection. The children’s prayers and thoughts are displayed and there is an age appropriate Bible and box of their own prayers available for them to use.
Religious Education is an important part of the school curriculum. The Somerset Awareness, Mystery and Values syllabus is followed and lessons are planned and delivered by a specialist teacher. A multidisciplinary approach is used to teach RE enabling all children to learn and express their thoughts in a variety of ways. The children research using the world wide web and specialist books that are selected to support each unit of study. Film clips of religious stories and practices are widely used alongside, role play, art, poetry, listening to religious music, Godly play and a range of ways of recording learning.
Visits to a variety of faith buildings and visitors from different faiths and denominations enable the children’s understanding of world faiths and respect the diversity and difference within faith communities
We invite visitors to lead some of our RE lessons. Father Geoff has told the children the children about how some special celebrations such as weddings and baptisms are performed in the church. He has also explained the significance of the different coloured stoles that he wears at different times of the year.
Mr Strange visited to lead a Godly play lesson, teaching the children about how we know what is right and wrong.
Tiff, from the local chapel, is an expert on Judaism,and he led us through a Jewish Passover meal.
We celebrate whole school collaborative days where everyone takes part in activities in their house groups. The first RE Day was on the theme of the Nativity.The activities included collage, acting, ordering and retelling the story, talking about gifts that we can give and thoughts, prayers and wishes for others at Christmas.
As well as visiting the church for RE lessons the school visit St Mary’s Church in the village several times each year to have services to remember Christian festivals. All the school community are welcome to come and join in with the celebrations.
Our annual leavers service is also celebrated in the church where Year 6 children celebrate their time spent at the school, Bibles are presented and annual awards given.
Children have joined in activities with children from West Monkton School. Members from St Augustines Church in West Monkton and St Mary’s Church Cheddon Fitzpaine joined together to tell parable stories and lead activities related to them.
The school council organised a collection of toys for children in an orphanage in Busu, Uganda. This was arranged with a former pupil, Brad Durrant, who was going to Busu on a mission trip with a group from a local chapel. Brad brought back photos of the children playing with the donated toys.
Donations from the end of year school performance and the profits from Class 5 enterprise activity were also given to the charity.
The school supported the MacMillan Cancer Charity by running a cake sale.
The school has regular involvement in the local community. We take part in the annual Cheddon Flower Show, use the Village Hall for plays and special events and visit both the church and village as part of several curriculum areas of learning.
We also have strong links with Hestercombe Gardens who have donated an art prize cup to the school.
St Mary’s Church PCC and the local Mary Joslin Trust provided the school with a new class set of Good News Bibles for Key Stage 2 children to use during their RE lessons.
The church also present every Year 6 leaver with their own copy of the Good News Bible in the leavers’ service at the end of each year.
Many of the parents are involved with the ‘Friends of Cheddon’. They actively support the school by arranging several social and fundraising events each year. These include school discos and talent shows for the children and family events such as barn dances, fairs, bingo and quiz evenings. They provide many of the ‘extras’ that the children enjoy around the school. Recently the school has benefitted from having major improvements made to the large playground area, extra sports equipment and money towards school trips donated by the ‘Friends of Cheddon’.
Parents, other family members and people from the community help by assisting on school trips, listening to children read in school and providing other valuable classroom support.
Parents look after the school garden and made up many of the willing volunteers who tidied up the school grounds, painted fences and sorted out the area for the forest school.