“With thankfulness, courage and love, we strive to improve heart and mind.”
John 4:13 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again.”
We have chosen John’s Gospel Chapter 4:13 as the biblical underpinning of our school vision and core Christian values of, thankfulness, courage and love, which our school community can articulate and discuss with meaning.
Our School Vision
At Chilton Foliat Primary School we honour our educational heritage, supported by a strong Christian ethos. We strive to provide a diverse education that inspires children to develop a thirst for knowledge. This is delivered in a safe, supportive and nurturing environment promoting self-discipline, motivation and excellence in learning. We encourage strong partnerships and positive relationships amongst pupils, parents, carers, staff and the wider community.
Our school Christian vision is revealed in a collaborative artistic composition; its setting and elements carefully chosen connecting with our current school context and the journey we are on. The flowing river on whose banks we sit, with all its tributaries, surging in the same direction yet sometimes taking a different course to reach the end goal.
This vision was created as part of our vision and values project in July 2019. The children enjoyed working with a visiting artist, Mrs Sue Faux. The project outcome is based on a Mappa Mundi – a historical map that illustrates what a society knows and what it believes is true (which can include truths but also myths). The images describe buildings, animals and natural landmarks that the community knows well. Having discussed the brief with Sue she suggested we chose this method saying, “This seems synonymous with the position of pupils moving further afield as their education progresses and with the school’s Christian values chosen as thankfulness, courage and love. Chilton Foliat has a long and interesting history and a Mappa Mundi would enable us to illustrate the past, present and future in the same piece, as well as creating an opportunity to explore the history of the area.”
Our Curriculum Intent
Underpinning the distinctive Christian vision of the school lies a values curriculum which gives focus to many aspects of life at school. The Intent of our curriculum can be summarised in the following:
Curriculum planning for 2019/2020 (which can also be seen on our website) supports our curriculum intent and is underpinned by our three core values: we ask of our children “big questions” linked to their cross-curricular learning journeys. For example: “
- How can I show thankfulness to the world around us?
- How do we show love for our local area?
- How do we conquer the fear of the unknown or unseen?
- Do you have the courage of your convictions?
- Loving our bodies and our minds. What can we do to love ourselves more?
Living Out Our Christian Values
Children and staff discuss and reflect on our core Christian values, of thankfulness, courage and love, during Collective Worship, in class, circle time and in and around the school on a daily basis. These discussions are also linked with appropriate bible readings and other biblical references supported by our frequent visits from our local clergy, and our “Open The Book” teams. The choosing of our core Christian values involved the whole school community, including our children, their parents and carers, the whole school staff team and our Governors.
We believe incorporating these values helps to encourage our children to gain self-esteem and self-worth, they become more willing to get involved with decision-making, they become more engaged with the school and they learn better self-control through thinking more intelligently. Relationships improve, with people in the school valuing each other, gaining a better understanding of themselves and the world around them, and providing an additional tool to resolve disagreements.
When we actively engage with our values, we start to understand their implications for making choices about our attitudes and responses. A values-based approach encourages reflective and inspirational attributes and attitudes. These can be nurtured to help people discover the very best of themselves, which enables them to be good citizens and prepare them for the life of work. It equips our children with social capacities that help them work with, and relate to others effectively. It provides them with the self-esteem and confidence to explore and develop their full potential.
Although we keep at the centre of our Christian journey our three key values, we also explore a series of connected Christian values each term, securing deeply our Christian Distinctiveness as a Church of England Primary School. The children are encouraged to continue living out our values and discussing them outside of school.
School Involvement in the life of the local church community
Chilton Foliat Primary School are also proud and protective of our strong links with the local church community. Clergy representatives regularly come to school to guide our children in Collective Worship. Once a week, we also welcome our Open the Book Team who deliver exciting, participative and interactive worships based on relevant readings from the bible through which to engage all our children in the teachings of many Christian concepts and the teachings of Jesus.
The children love to go to our local church, St Mary’s Chilton Foliat. Not only to celebrate our traditional Christian celebrations such as Harvest and Christmas, but also to visit at one of God’s special places. A Reception child summarises the impact our church visits have on the lives of our children, “even though church is cold, I feel warm because I know Jesus lives here.”
Links with charities and similar organisations
Our School Council have an important job of work to do in 2019/2020. Following on from our successful re-visioning project culminating in July 2019, members of the executive committee will be researching and promoting three main charities through which the whole school can live out our core Christian values of thankfulness, courage and love. The concept of courageous advocacy has been shared and feedback already received indicating that our choice of charity will be based on one local, one national and one international. Over the past year, the children have been actively involved in supporting a charity right on their doorstep; that of the Chilton Foliat Community Club House. They have helped run many events such as choir singing in a local supermarket, running stalls at local markets and fairs and using their entrepreneurial skills in the Grow A Fiver campaign, which was launched with reference to the Parable of the Talents, in Matthew 25:14–30. The total raised from such initiatives and which directly involved our children came to just over £5000.
Working with the School Council and Executive Committee, it will be up to the children of this school to decide which charities they would like to support, and how they intend to interact and raise funds. Now that the members of the School Council have been democratically elected, their work can begin…
Proposed Charitable causes – September 2019
Children in Need
The Joy Project, Myanmar
Julia’s House Hospice for children
Action Through Enterprise Ghana
King George VI Centre, school for SEND children, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
Mental Health and Wellbeing
For our children
The mental well-being for all our children remains at the centre of our educational philosophy at Chilton Foliat Primary School; our children learn in a safe, supportive and nurturing environment. We take the gamut of our Safeguarding responsibilities extremely seriously, receive regular training and share any concerns (other than formal disclosures which are managed via the DSL and DDSL) at all staff meetings and on an ad hoc basis; no child is left unseen or unheard. Many of our parents choose Chilton Foliat as it is a small school where children across all year groups get along and look after each other. Here is a selection of parent quotes that reflect this:
- “CF has a consistent nurturing and confidence building environment”
- “I know that if my child is worried, she/he knows they can talk to an adult”
- “The teachers are exceptional people who really nurture and care for their pupils”.
- “The size of the school means that all the children know each other and have an incredible bond and sense of caring and looking after each other”.
We have a trained Emotional Literacy Support Assistant (ELSA) who is passionate about what she does and can offer a range of resources to any of our children to support their emotional development. Reasons for offering support and intervention could include: social skills, emotions, bereavement, anger management, self-esteem. We also run a lunchtime mindfulness club for those children who want to take a little bit of time out to draw, chat, laugh and just be.
For our adults
All our staff work incredibly hard to provide our children the best possible educational and enriched primary school experience possible. We are a great team and as such are supportive and caring of each other. The leadership team are mindful of workload and endeavour to set high expectations for professional practice that are reasonable and timely. We celebrate success and achievement and likewise bolster and reassure when events don’t go quite to plan. Work-life balance is a much used term, easy to say, yet, if we are being honest, difficult to achieve. At Chilton Foliat, we encourage each other to take proper breaks, we know about each other’s home lives, families, the ups and the downs. We treat ourselves from time to time: the occasional box of chocolates, flowers and a sweetie secret stash, “posh coffee”, go down well. Above all, just as we place our children at the centre of our nurturing and caring learning environment, all our adults are deserved of the same status.
Policies and documents
For all relevant policies and supporting documents, please see our Policy Tab held within our school website.
In addition to our three core values, we also explore connected values throughout the year. These are shared by our Open The Book teams and reflected upon back in class. We also use our Roots and Shoots Collective Worship resource for stimulus and engagement. All of our values have become an embedded part of our Christian Distinctiveness, which can be articulated and lived out through the words and actions of our whole school community. The values for 2019/2020 are:
Autumn Term One: Respect
Autumn Term Two: Friendship
Spring Term Three: Courage
Spring Term Four: Forgiveness
Summer Term Five: Compassion
Summer Term Six: Generosity
PSHE is promoted through Circle Times, using SEAL resources and opportunities for pupils to talk about and share ideas and feelings.
Children across the school are given a voice through the School’s Council and through class agreements on Golden Rules.