Faith and Mission
Catholic schools possess a unique and distinct character, being places in which faith, culture and life are brought into harmony.
St Chad’s School exists as part of the broader evangelising Mission of the church; a Mission through which the person of Jesus Christ is made known and loved. It is hoped that this missionary impulse is evident in every aspect and dimension of school life. With this missionary focus, our school is committed to the formation of the whole person; a formation that encompasses the spiritual, intellectual, physical, social, moral, aesthetic and religious capacity of each child that enters its doors.
School staff, in partnership with parents and guardians who serve as the primary educators of their children, embody this Mission through quality interpersonal relationships and a recognition of a mutuality of gifts to ensure the building of a unique learning and faith community.
People of prayer: Prayer is part of the school’s daily life in classrooms, assemblies, staff meetings, special occasions, times of grief and Religious Studies lessons. Each class has a Mission Display, where the children have considered how they can follow the example of Christ and be good Christians, to others in their class, the school and in wider society.
Christ like values: Lessons, procedures, actions and attitudes demonstrate Christ like values such as compassion, justice and hope. The schools’ 9 Gospel Values are taught, shared and lived by in the school. Each student is valued and their unique human dignity is respected.
Visual identity: The sacred spaces and symbolism throughout the school reminds us of our Catholic story.
Liturgy: We celebrate the key moments of the year through liturgical celebration - beginning of the school year, Ash Wednesday, Holy Week, St Chad’s Feast Day, Advent, End of school year. Many liturgies are led by students who are involved in providing music, singing and drama.
Eucharistic community: The whole community of St Chad’s school attend Masses, which are held in school, for the beginning of the year, and on Holy Days of Obligation. Students from Yr2- 6, attend Friday Mass at St Chad’s Church on a rota system. Year 6 celebrate a special Mass of thanksgiving during their final week at St Chad’s. Students are often encouraged to attend their local parish celebrations.
Staff Spiritual Formation: Staff spirituality is supported through regular staff liturgies, which provides an opportunity for spiritual development and formation for staff. Themes such as “Living laudato Si” (Caring for Creation with Catholic Earthcare) and “At the Heart of Everything is Jesus Christ”, assist staff to reflect on their own faith and grasp of Church teaching.
Pupil Spiritual Formation: Gospel Assemblies, liturgies and Prayer Time, support the children in developing their spirituality, as well as the Come and See Religious Education Programme. The school’s Gospel values provide the framework for informing their behaviour towards God and each other. Through the Gospel Values, themes including Pope Francis’ encyclicals ‘Laudato Si’ and ‘Fratelli Tutti’ are shared with the children in an age appropriate way.
Guest speakers and performers are used at times during the year to provide faith formation experiences including representatives from one Kind word and CAFOD.
Links with Parish, diocese and wider Church: We are blessed to have a strong relationship with our local parish of St Chad’s. Fr Ambrose and Fr John preside over our Masses at school and are involved in our major liturgies. Mrs Henley (a parishioner) and Mrs Gallagher, have organised prayer sessions in the church, during the season of Advent. A number of staff, students and families of the school are active in their local parish communities. All senior leaders attend the First Holy Communions in the parish. Mrs Mitchener is part of the Croydon Diocesan Adoramus Group, supporting the school in developing the celebration of Adoration in St Chad’s School. The group has links with Children of the Eucharist (COTE) in Ireland, whose ministry involves speaking to schools about the real presence of God, the sacraments and leading students in adoration of the most holy Eucharist.
Student leadership: The Student Leadership, Faith Leaders and the CAFOD group meet regularly to support the school in providing enriching spiritual development. The CAFOD group lead assemblies, raising the profile of Catholic Social Justice and how we can support the most vulnerable in the world, leading to a fairer society.
Religious Studies: Lessons in Religious Education using the Come and See resources, provide excellent grounding in the Catholic faith tradition. Topics are often timed to correspond with and compliment the liturgical year and social justice. The final topic of each year links with CAFOD to explore the Universal Church theme and Catholic Social Teaching.
Social Justice: Awareness and action to create socially just and equitable conditions for all is promoted as a part of school life. Daily prayer, invitations to be part of the CAFOD group, visiting nursing homes at Christmas, and fundraising are all ways students can be involved. Students are encouraged to participate in action to show support for the vulnerable and caring for creation.
Fundraising: Students raise funds to promote social change through a variety of activities. Food donations are collected during the harvest period for food charities, including the Trussell Trust. CAFOD is supported each year, through a variety of fundraising and social justice profile raising activities. During Lent the mission together Missio ‘Little Red Box’ appeal is supported.
Year 6 raising funds for the Royal British Legion