Vision & Ethos
Our Mission as a Catholic school
We are proud to be a Catholic Community here at St. Mary’s. Our mission commits us to place Christ at the centre of all we do, knowing that through Him we will be strengthened and upheld through the challenges and joys of school life. St. Mary’s is a welcoming and inspiring Catholic community, based on Gospel values, where there is a sense of belonging and care in the Kingdom of God. All leaders focus on the Catholic Mission of the school in daily practice and provide opportunities for regular and meaningful Collective Worship. Catholic Social Teaching is used to instil in our community a sense of social justice, care for others and the world, so that, as a result, pupils and parents understand the distinct value of being in a Catholic school and staff want to work here and stay here because they feel valued and loved.
Throughout the school year we offer pupils numerous opportunities to share liturgies, and we see this as central to the life of the school.
The first celebration on our school calendar is the Year 7 Mass of Welcome, to which all parents are invited. We mark the end of each term with liturgies and observe the Church’s calendar, holding services or Masses, as appropriate, at Christmas and to mark Easter. We celebrate a fortnightly Mass in the local parish church of St. Ambrose and throughout the year all of our students will have the opportunity to attend Mass there.
We also see opportunities to respond to others and the needs of the world, as a key part of educating our students in their Catholic faith. To that end, we invite them to take part in harvest festival, a Reverse Advent Calendar, CAFOD Lent fast and encourage students to seek other ways that they can act in a socially responsible way.
All assemblies provide the opportunity for praying together as a school community, and collective worship is their prime function. Assemblies are planned and delivered by students in their form groups, the Chaplain and SLT and follow liturgical themes throughout the year. Assemblies take place in the school hall, which is the extension of the school chapel.
Year Group Assemblies
Each year group has an assembly once a week, on a designated day, at 8.30am as follows:
Year 7 – Monday
Year 8 – Tuesday
Year 9 – Wednesday
Year 10 – Thursday
Year 11 – Friday
Collective Worship in forms
Each morning begins with prayers in form tutor groups. Pupils are encouraged to take an active part and on occasions lead the reflections and prayers. The school day normally ends with a prayer too.
RE Ambassadors and Chaplaincy Team
The RE Ambassadors are a group of students who wish to promote RE and Chaplaincy in school. They are involved in the planning and delivery of school events and form part of the student Chaplaincy Team.
The Chaplaincy Team meets on a half termly basis and is made up of RE Ambassadors, Flourishing Life Leaders and members of staff.