Recently our primary school community (St Peter and St Paul Primary in Rishton) gathered for a very special celebration of the Eucharist at church to announce the outcome of our recent SIAMS inspection, writes Father Christopher Holden from the local parish church, also named St Peter and St Paul.
SIAMS stands for Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools which focuses on the impact of the Church school's Christian vision on pupils and adults.
Being a Eucharistic community, which was noted in the Inspection Report twice as a strength, we thought what better or more fitting way to make this announcement than gathered around the altar of the church.
The SIAMS report said: The school’s Christian vision permeates every aspect of its life and work. As a result, all pupils and adults flourish. Relationships between the school and its communities, including parents, the local parish and partner schools are innovative and exemplary.
Every pupil is nurtured and thrives. Individuality and diversity are welcomed and celebrated (and the school) promotes a ‘love for God and each other’.
All are supported, respected and included and as a result flourish socially, emotionally, spiritually and academically. Pupils are comfortable in prayer and reflection because they recognise the value of both.
Even the very youngest, have a mature appreciation of liturgy. They know and use the prayers and responses of the Anglican Church. Pupils confidently write their own prayers and pray spontaneously using their own words.
The school works tirelessly to make God and faith accessible to families. As a consequence, many families establish links with the parish and choose to receive the sacraments. Eucharist is celebrated weekly and pupils have an impressive understanding of why it is pivotal in Christian worship.