Our Mission Statement
We seek to inspire in children the joy and wonder of learning, through cherishing,
nurturing, supporting and challenging each one, whatever their talents and needs.
As we journey together with Christ, we aim to develop in all children intellectual curiosity,
creative endeavour, compassion for others and the courage to act on their beliefs.
‘Journeying Together in Faith’
A joy and love of learning within our Catholic community leading to the best outcomes for all.
We have twelve core values that we embody in all that we do:
Our community is loving, peaceful and joyful.
We are patient and kind.
We respect and value everyone.
We are open and honest and are ready to say sorry, forgive and move on.
We nurture each other to trust, hope and be resilient in the face of fear and anxiety.
We embrace challenge and support each other to get back up when challenges can knock us.
We do this as we journey together in faith.
Journeying together in faith
St Mary’s is a Catholic school, originially founded for the education of children from Catholic families. About two-thirds of our current children are Catholics. We also welcome children from families of any faith or none. What is important is that you agree with our guiding principles which are based on the teaching of Jesus Christ:
- Cherishing the special nature of each child as a unique human being made in the image of God, providing the care to ensure enjoyment and success in learning, and meeting individual needs.
- Fostering children’s sense of personal responsibility, and their ability to stand up for what they know to be right.
- Enabling children to develop relationships through showing generosity, honesty, tolerance and forgiveness.
- Encouraging a concern to help others, both locally and globally, and to care for the environment.
Children learn to live by these values through their daily life as part of the school community. There are frequent opportunities for children to show they care, both formal and informal. This is what we mean by ‘journeying together in faith’. Our aim is that, whatever their religious background, all our children should become ‘people of goodwill’ with a lifelong commitment to creating a more perfect world.
Other aspects of children’s experience are more specifically Catholic. Children learn about prayer and worship in their classes, in daily whole-school assemblies and, on special occasions, in our local parish church of St Peter. Worship is always presented in a way which is suitable to children’s ages. We are sensitive to the needs of our non-Catholic children, who are never made to feel ‘different’.
We hold regular celebrations of the Mass, where the whole school community can come together. We always welcome parents to attend, whether or not they are themselves Catholics as well as our local parishoner friends.
Religious education lessons are based on the syllabus drawn up by the Diocese of East Anglia. The syllabus encourages children to engage with ideas and the implications of faith. Topics are wide-ranging and include a study of other major world religions. Children also learn about sexuality within the context of Catholic teaching, in a way which is appropriate for their stage of development. We aim for children to accept their own and others’ sexuality in a positive light, and to develop relationships in which love, dignity and responsibility are central.
We support our two local parishes, St Peter’s and St Mary’s, in preparing Catholic children for the Reception of First Holy Communion and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.