Church School Effectiveness and SIAMS
Valuing Our Distinctly Christian Ethos
Guided by Christian and British values, we maintain that learning should be an exciting and enjoyable experience for everyone (adults and children); it should be fun and interactive, challenging and celebratory so a love for learning deepens and everyone's light shines.
Our Christian values support our spiritual, moral, social and cultural development as we grow and learn together in a happy, safe, aspirational environment. Through God’s example, we celebrate the uniqueness of each individual and endeavour to unlock their full potential. We inspire and enable our children to contribute to and thrive in a diverse society through promoting the following core values:
Friendship, Love, Perseverance, Respect and Compassion
In so doing, our vision is that our whole community will let their light shine so that all may flourish and succeed.
Our Vision Explained
“Let your light shine” (Matthew 5:16) so that all may flourish and succeed.
Our strong sense of community and collaboration ensures that happiness, fulfilment and wellbeing are at the forefront of our work, so that children know they are loved by God and in turn grow to love learning, to love life and to love others. Our ambition is for all our children and school community to use their talents and gifts for the common good so that they may live life in all its fullness.
Our vision is rooted in the teachings of Jesus. In the sermon He gave to His followers, as described in Matthew 5:16, He said:
When you shine your light, you become the symbol of hope and goodness in the world; to be the light in someone's life is ultimately the best thing you can do for them as you will then find great joy. We encourage our children to be kind, caring and respectful of others; we want them to have kind thoughts, speak kind words and do good deeds. In so doing, we know that they will be happy and feel a sense of peace, safety and so their confidence will grow. Their light will shine for others, with others and upon others.
We are delighted and very proud of our most recent SIAMS Report (Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools) which took place in November 2021.
Some of the highlights:
The school is characterised by the tangible care that pervades the whole school community...
Everyone is valued inclusively with dignity and respect as precious children of God...
The quality of teaching in RE is consistently good or better, shown through school monitoring and verified during inspection...
...exceptionally close and mutually supportive relationships between church and school...
As put by a parent, ‘each individual feels part of a big family because everyone is valued and welcomed.’
Pupils care for and support each other with kindness and respect. As noted by a pupil, ‘We let our light shine to others by showing kindness’.
The school’s behaviour focus of ‘Care and persevere, show respect and be fair’, supports all in treating others as they wish to be treated. As a pupil said, ‘we let our light shine by respecting and valuing people who do not believe the same things as us’. Pupils are keen to challenge injustice and enjoy articulating the difference they make. They feel listened to and their viewpoints are treated with respect.
- The whole school community share a clear Christian vision for the school. This vision, and associated values, underpin the whole life of the school and inform every decision that is made.
- Waltham-on-the-Wolds School is a highly inclusive and caring community where every pupil is valued, nurtured and challenged as the unique person God created them to be.
- The pupils’ needs are met effectively, including through the promotion of mental health. Pupils live out the vision and values through care for each other, social action and opportunities to challenge injustices.
- Collective worship, springing from the Christian vision, is valued, biblical and affirming. It is developed and enriched by strong opportunities for pupil leadership. Collective worship influences the lives of both pupils and staff, enabling them to flourish.
- Enquiry-based religious education (RE) develops curiosity through questioning, although expectations of what pupils will learn in each lesson sometimes lack clarity.
- Staff strengths and expertise have been used to develop a cohesive and relevant curriculum. This is impacting positively on attitudes to learning, with pupils engaged and hungry to learn. Whilst opportunities exist that support pupils’ spiritual development, opportunities are sometimes missed as the school lacks a clear shared view of what spirituality means to them.
The full report can be read below.