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Our Ethos, Vision & Aims

At St. Andrew’s we value highly the development of the whole child; spiritually, morally, socially, culturally and intellectually and are proud of our caring Christian ethos. As a Church of England School, we affirm and value every member of our school community. We recognise each child and adult as a child of God, as unique and special to God and have a commitment and responsibility to provide the best possible education for our children within a caring Christian community.

What do we value? What excites us? What do we want for the children in our care?
The staff and Governors of St. Andrew’s considered these questions very carefully. Which “gifts‟ would it be most important for each of our children to receive during their time at our school? The gifts that were identified form our Vision.

 

A Vision for St. Andrew’s School

A St. Andrew’s child will have…

  • Positive self-esteem through inner confidence and strength
  • Creativity of thought within a life-long passion for learning
  • Excellence, high personal achievement and the experience of success
  • A set of values by which to live
  • An enjoyment of childhood

…. developed within a caring Christian environment.

 

Every aspect of our life in school is shaped by our Vision. It is not complete or final, but an aspiration that will grow and develop as we work together as a learning community to do the very best for the children in our care.

At St. Andrew’s we aim to nurture within our children. . .

Positive self-esteem through inner confidence and strength
As pupils within a church school, each of our children will learn that they are valued as equal, unique, precious and loved by God. Everyone has something individual to offer and can learn to appreciate the potential power in their own lives and to develop an awareness of their own and of each other’s gifts and talents. Children who know that they are loved and are able to love themselves, can admit weakness and learn from mistakes. They are equipped with the self-respect and perseverance to cope effectively with a rapidly changing and challenging world.

Creativity of thought within a life-long passion for learning
Children are naturally curious about the world around them and eager to learn. We respond to and build upon this. The learning that we provide nurtures both creative and logical thinking and develops self-expression, questioning and imagination. We inspire and stimulate each individual to explore further, to enjoy learning for its own sake – learning that is transferable and relevant whatever their lives may hold.

Excellence, high personal achievement and the experience of success
Every child has just one education and deserves the opportunity to succeed and to realise their full potential, whatever that potential may be. Success comes in many forms. Excellence and high personal achievement will always be promoted and successes of every kind will always be celebrated. We believe that every child must experience success, learn to recognise excellence and believe that they can aspire to and achieve it . We meet individual needs and interests through a personalised approach to learning.

A set of values by which to live
Children need values by which to live – true values against which to evaluate the world and its ways. These values cannot be imposed, but should come from within, from the child’s inherent strength and as such must be nurtured. As a Church School we recognise these as Christian Values, as demonstrated in Jesus’ life. However, research has also identified these values as those accepted and upheld throughout the world, by members of all faiths and none, as universal values which support happy, well-adjusted, socially integrated and morally responsible lives.

An enjoyment of childhood
We believe that it is the right of all children to be treated with respect – allowing them to progress naturally through childhood as children and providing them with positive experiences. We want our pupils to behave like children; to fully enjoy learning and play; to keep pressures in perspective; to enjoy responsibility and freedom; indeed to see life ‘through the eyes of a child’.

Every part of our Vision must have a direct impact upon each child and their learning.
Our expectations are very high – and it is right that they should be – but what a wonderful and worthwhile Vision to uphold and to work towards. This is a vision that our whole school community – staff, parents, governors, church and children – works together to achieve.

Values and Values Education

Our Vision and Aims are central to every moment of life at St. Andrew’s. Our programme of Values Education is central in making it happen.

Our last SIAS (Statutory Inspection of Anglican Schools) Inspection (March 2010) graded our school as ‘outstanding’ and stated that:

Christian values are at the heart of this school ‘like writing through a stick of rock.’ Pupils have a great sense of joy in being part of the school. This is shared by parents, staff and governors. This results in a secure learning environment where children make good academic progress. The high profile of Christian values and the role models of adults in school, mean that pupils show and can explain the importance of love, care and respect. Pupils’ behaviour is outstanding because of the respect, care and tolerance the values programme instils into their actions. The ethos of this school gives pupils a firm knowledge base on which to make moral decisions and choices, as a foundation for their future lives as members of a multicultural society.

Our children have to learn to be in the world, to take their place in it, to observe and respond to it; to deal with even complex and troubling situations in a socially acceptable way. It is essential for children to do this from a position of strength and self-respect. Building upon a sense of right and wrong, our children learn to grow as reflective learners, able to deal with failure and to learn from making mistakes. They gradually gain true independence of mind and action, form positive relationships and develop a clear sense of social responsibility. Through our programme of Values Education, the children learn to recognise and live by the values of the Christian faith – which include responsibility, consideration, forgiveness, generosity and love.

Integral to and supporting all aspects of school life, from curriculum to play; learning behaviour to environment; and through inter-personal relationships at all levels and between all members of the school family, Values Education under-pins your child’s entire school experience.
Delivered through assemblies (school and class), Circle Time and PSHE, as well as through class, group and individual work, the children reflect upon the values, learning to ‘live’ them and to own and to use them in their everyday lives. Thus, they are enabled to become confident learners for life – personally responsible, yet successfully interacting with others. The self-knowledge and peace of mind that this process leads to is essential to concentration, observation, analysis and learning. Within a harmonious learning environment, every child is supported in achieving their full potential – body, mind and spirit.

The School as a Church School
An awareness and understanding of God’s love and of Christian values is integral to every aspect of school life and informs the distinctive character of our Church of England school.
St. Andrew’s has strong links with the local Parish Church of St. Andrew’s (St. Alban’s Diocese) where the school family goes to worship several times a year. As a Church of England school, our worship is an important part of school life together.

To find out more, go to ‘Worship in School’ under the Our School tab.