St. Mary’s Junior School is a voluntary controlled (VC) Church of England school. This means that our Governing Body include Foundation Governors representing the Parish of St. Mary the Virgin, Baldock and the Diocese of St. Albans. We have a very close relationship with the church and regularly worship together, led by Father Andrew. We express our Christian ethos through the Christian Values we teach and our school’s mission statement. St Mary’s Junior School – A place to learn, respect each other, build friendships and trust in God. Our aim is to promote the development of the whole child and an enjoyment of learning for life. Whilst celebrating our Christian faith, we respect the religious views, moral values, ethnic backgrounds and way of life of all people.
We believe that collective worship both supports and strengthens our aims in every aspect of school life. Our caring ethos and the value we place on the development of the whole child, spiritually, morally, socially, culturally and intellectually is reflected in our worship. We value this special time in the school day for the space it gives children to develop a reflective approach to life and the ability to express their reflections in traditionally religious way or any other appropriate manner. collective act of worship policy Jan 18
Our recent SIAMs inspection (May 17) graded the school ‘Outstanding’. Please follow the link to read the full report. SIAMS Report for St Mary’s Junior, Baldock JL docx
Our Christian Values for 2018- 2019
RE at St. Mary’s.
We believe that RE both supports and strengthens what we aim to do in every aspect of school life. Our caring ethos and the value which we place on the development of the whole child; spiritually, morally, socially, culturally and intellectually is reflected in the RE curriculum. Religious Education enables pupils to develop respect for and sensitivity to others, in particular those whose faiths, beliefs and world views are different from their own. It promotes discernment and enables pupils to overcome prejudice.
Visits to Places of Worship
Each year we offer the children chance to visit places of worship. Last year, Year 3 visited a Mosque and the Cathedral in Peterborough and Year 5 visited the Synagogue in St Albans and an exhibition on Judaism hosted by St. Albans Abbey. This Autumn year 3 have visit St. Mary’s to find out about Baptism with Father James.
St. Mary’s Congregation celebrated their Parish Praise in the Junior School on Sunday 15th July. Members of the parish commented: “It was a really happy service – all the adults were joining in the actions, as well as the children.” “There was great audience participation” and “The curate’s wrap about John the Baptist was supported by children from St. Mary’s School Choir and brought a smile to the face of the congregation!”
Each year the children in Year 5 and Year 6 celebrate Holy Communion in the spring and summer term and Year 6 celebrate again during advent. Year 3 and year 4 celebrate Christingle in school during December and the whole school had their Christmas service at St Mary’s church.
The school celebrates the Harvest Festival every Autumn. Often Autumn poems and prayers are read by the children during this celebration The gifts of food is donated each year to a local food bank.
Last year the school prepared for Advent with collective worship all about Stir Up Sunday. We made biscuits and Father Andrew told us the story of the sheep and the goats. We thought about ways we could stir ourselves up in preparation for Christmas and collectively made a collage to represent the nativity crib and the Star of David.
Soundbites from the School / Church Service
It was nice to have a less formal service and to have it at the school. (Mrs B)
It was lovely to see the vicar dancing! (Mrs C)
There was great audience participation. (Mrs R)
It was a really happy service – all the adults were joining in the actions, as well as the children. A nice change to have it at the school. (Mrs M)
Really lovely to have. We should have more of this type of thing. (Mrs E)