We want collective worship to be valued as the heartbeat of our school and provide an opportunity for us to be regularly grounded as a community in the Christian values we hold as a Church of England school. It flows from our commitment to regard “people as our treasure” (the basis of our vision, mission and values).
The school Bidding Prayer sums up our intent for collective worship:
God, please help us, whether we have faith or no faith, to
- Be still
- Connect with our school’s Christian vision and values
- Consider how our termly themes affect our lives, our relationships, our community, our world
- Take an opportunity for prayer or reflectionCollective Worship takes place during our tutorial period each day (9.35-10.05am), in three main contexts, with a common focus on our termly theme (for example, change, service, gratitude, etc):
House Collective Worship:
On one day each week, one of our five Houses participates in a collective worship event in the magnificent setting of the Wiltshire Music Centre auditorium. This is much more than a traditional “school assembly” – it is an expression of our Christian vision and is an act of worship, rather than just a talk or presentation. It is an inclusive activity which provides an invitation for students and adults to celebrate and connect, in a variety of ways depending on their faith position, with:
- Our school vision and values
- Our community
- Local or world events
House collective worship is led by school staff, students and local church leaders. There is usually live music, provided by our students, as the House gathers. The Bidding and Sending prayers represent an opportunity for students and adults present to pray or reflect on the issues and themes explored. Biblical references are included and the teachings of Jesus and how these can be applied in today’s world are often explored. When appropriate we acknowledge and celebrate links between Christian beliefs and values and those from other religious and humanitarian standpoints. Important times in the Christian calendar like Advent, Lent and Easter are given particular focus.
Breathing Time in Tutor Groups:
On three days a week, students meet in their tutor groups to follow a carefully devised programme (see the Pastoral page). At 10am, tutor groups fall silent as the term’s Sending Prayer is read and tutors invite students to pray or reflect on an aspect of the prayer which links to the preceding tutorial activity. Students then briefly discuss their responses and these are recorded in a Reflection Book. Towards the end of each term, the tutor group brings their reflections together in a variety of ways, with a focus on how the term’s collective worship theme has impacted on them and, perhaps, enabled them to flourish as individuals or a group and make positive changes.
Each House gathers once a week in Trinity Hall for a Briefing. This is more like a traditional assembly, with presentations from students and staff on a wide variety of topics, including wellbeing, safeguarding and environmental issues. However Briefing always culminates in a collective worship period, when students are invited to pause and pray or reflect on the term’s Sending Prayer.