Our Christian School
St. George’s Church of England Primary School is a Voluntary Controlled school in the Kent village of Wrotham, near Sevenoaks. In 1969, it moved from its original Victorian school building in the centre of the village to a modern building on a much more spacious site. The school is a one form entry with strong links with the attached St. George’s Pre-School. Current school profile includes 14% SEN with 40 (20%) pupils listed as Pupil Premium. Our 201 pupils are mostly White British, drawn mainly from the local community, which includes a large housing estate. There are significantly more boys in school than girls (106/95) and approximately 5% are from worshipping church families although many worship outside the village.
The school’s caring ‘inclusive’ ethos attracts a higher than average number of pupils with special educational needs and within the school we have a significant proportion of families who are involved with the school's SENCO and other outside agencies.
In 2008 the school received an ‘Outstanding’ Ofsted judgement, noting that pupils achieve exceptionally well to reach above average standards by the time they leave Year 6.’ This was reconfirmed in 2011 with a positive interim judgement. in our last SIAMS report in 2018 we received an 'Outstanding' grading following previous outstanding gradings in 2008 and 2012.
We are very proud of our effective and caring Christian ethos throughout the school which has an impact on the teaching and learning. Our pupils are exposed to daily, meaningful Collective Worship with opportunities of high level of pupil involvement and reflection, supported by our Leading Lights.
The school is proactive within the Rochester Diocese Board Education (RDBE), our RE and Collective Worship Lead has an active role within SACRE. Previously we have hosted RE Support Groups in St. George’s Church and we hold the Diocese RE Resources.
We have a short daily act of worship which includes a story, prayer and hymn. We see these as a central part of our school life and are seen as a core activity for the school.
In February 2018, we received our third 'Outstanding' SIAMS report, which reported:
- High aspirations, compassion and a celebration of each child's unique worth ensure that every child flourishes, particularly the most vulnerable,
- Excellent relationships with the local church reflect a joint mission to serve the local community,
- Collective worship is highly valued by the whole community, including parents, and has been developed by excellent practice which reflects the pupils' ideas and wishes,
- Leaders have created an ethos where respect, trust and kindness nurture the development of all staff.
Our Reverend leads Worship once a week and we cement ties by holding a service each month in our local Parish Church.
Parents are invited to Class Worship and our Monthly Family Worship in the church to share in the children’s learning.
Parents have the legal right to withdraw their children from these sessions. If you do not wish your child to take part in RE lessons or Collective Worship, please speak to the Headteacher so that alternative arrangements can be made.
Collective Worship and Religious Education Frequently Asked Questions
Collective worship is a special time during the school day where pupils are given the space and opportunity to reflect, respond and revere. At St. George’s CE Primary School, collective worship takes place daily assemblies and will often include the use of music, a candle, a time of silence and a prayer to offer a focus for pupils. These may be held for as whole school, in key stages or as a class.
At our school, this will include the use of songs, music, stories and readings familiar to those of a Christian faith, and promoting the values that Christians believe to be important. These may, and often are, values held to be important by other faiths as well and as such, the use of stories from other faiths, along with stories of a moral nature, are included as part of our assembly themes.
The school follows the Kent Agreed Syllabus supported by Rochester Diocesan materials. The agreed syllabus follows the legal requirement for religious education to reflect the fact that the religious traditions in Great Britain are in the main Christian, while taking account of the teachings and practices of the other principal religions represented in Great Britain.
At St. George’s CE Primary School, pupils study Christian RE topics in every year group, following the Understanding Christianity scheme. In addition, each year group has two terms learning about other faiths. (Please see the link below for the overview of topics taught.)
Pupils are taught about the main traditions, practices and beliefs of the religions, but will also have the opportunity to relate the key concepts covered to their own experiences and explore their own beliefs and questions of meaning. Each year group has a different RE unit of work every half term.
RE is taught weekly, following the legal requirement for RE. It may also be taught as part of a themed week, for example, at Christmas and Easter as well as themed days or sessions throughout the year.
Parents have the right to choose whether or not to withdraw their child from RE without influence from the school, although a school should ensure parents or carers are informed of this right and are aware of the educational objectives and content of the RE syllabus. In this way, parents can make an informed decision. Where parents have requested that their child is withdrawn, their right must be respected, and where RE is integrated in the curriculum, the Headteacher will need to discuss the arrangements with the parents or carers to explore how the child’s withdrawal can be best accommodated. If pupils are withdrawn from RE, schools have a duty to supervise them, though not to provide additional teaching or to incur extra cost. Pupils will usually remain on school premises.
Where a pupil has been withdrawn, the law provides for alternative arrangements to be made for RE of the kind the parent wants the pupil to receive (Section 71(3) of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998).
This RE could be provided at the school in question, or the pupil could be sent to another school where suitable RE is provided if this is reasonably convenient. If neither approach is practicable, outside arrangements can be made to provide the pupil with the kind of RE that the parent wants, and the pupil may be withdrawn from school for a reasonable period of time to allow them to attend this external RE.
Outside arrangements for RE are allowed as long as the LA is satisfied that any interference with the pupil’s attendance at school resulting from the withdrawal will affect only the start or end of a school session.