We are part of the Church of England and we include the church, and people who work with the church, in our school family. We visit the church regularly and involve people who work with the church in our worship. We also use the church building as an important part of our local history studies.
"Hildenborough Church of England Primary is a school deeply committed to the wellbeing and development of all in its care. The Christian vision of aspiring to 'do all things through Christ who strengthens me' is embedded into the daily life of the school. School leaders have ensured this drives all aspects of strategic planning, policy and procedure....
The vision and associated values are understood and articulated by all members of the school community, demonstrating how they underpin the ‘Hildenborough way’. Governors, staff and parents speak of the positive impact this has on adults and pupils flourishing."
SIAMS Church School Inspection Report, 2023
As a Church of England School, our school vision has the Christian ethos at the centre and we try to model the teaching of Jesus through the Bible within our daily lives. We do not try to convert all our pupils to Christianity. Indeed, we are proud to have pupils from other cultures and faiths and we enjoy learning about their different beliefs and traditions. We aim to nurture the children and give them the opportunities to become the best they can be.
We aim to support each individual and encourage them to flourish. Pupils are encouraged to explore and develop their own values and beliefs (which may or may not be Christian), and to appreciate the richness and diversity of the world. This is coupled with the promotion (and modelling) of high standards of personal behaviour and positive, caring, attitudes - all based on a firm bedrock of Christian values.
Spiritual development cannot always be structured and opportunities may arise spontaneously out of the school day. A range of experiences and curriculum areas provide opportunities for spiritual development (eg. Circle Time, P4C, drama, PSHE, science, humanities, PE, Forest School, music and RE.
Spirituality is an innate human capacity. It enables us to become aware of God, one another, the world around us and ourselves. As a school we provide children with openings for spiritual development through windows, mirrors and doors. This is for the ‘wows’ and ‘ows’ that we experience in the world.
(Please see the Developing Spirituality document below).
As a school, we follow the Rochester Diocesan materials in line with the Kent Agreed Syllabus, ensuring a broad and balanced curriculum. Staff supplement the plans with creative and engaging inputs and activities; such as, teaching through art and drama.
The teaching of Christianity forms the core of the syllabus complemented by teaching and learning about Judaism, Islam, Sikhism and Hinduism. In line with the Church of England Statement of Entitlement for RE, this ensures the children are able to understand that people have different beliefs, preparing them for life in a multi-cultural society.
Click here to view and/or download the Religious Education Policy.
Collective Worship & our Worship Wardens
It is a statutory requirement for all church schools to hold a daily act of Collective Worship. This is a good opportunity for us to meet as a whole school and take time to think and reflect. Our Collective Worship may take a range of forms such as celebrating success, welcoming members of the clergy or sharing work with others. We have a focus each week that links explicitly to the bible and Jesus' work, as well as connections to the wider world: global issues, charities, awareness of news affecting others, etc.
Collective worship at Hildenborough is joyful, safe and inclusive for all who experience it. Pupils and staff enjoy the opportunity to be together.
Our daily worship is highly valued and encourages the whole community to gather, engage, respond and send. Each class carries a class cross into worship; these crosses are also a sign of respect for the environment we are entering into as we come together for worship. The school community then engages in its collective worship with enthusiastic singing, reverence in prayer time and participation by the children (both planned and spontaneous). Worship is a focal part of the school day and is led by a variety of people, including staff, clergy, visitors and children. We seek to plan acts of worship which are inclusive, invitational and inspiring.
Our 'Worship Wardens' are our pupil worship leaders who are responsible for engaging the school in worship by helping us to gather and by sending us out to live what we have heard and by leading some of our prayers. The Worship Wardens regularly meet with our RE and Worship leader. Worship takes place in class, in the hall, in church and even outside! Parents are invited to attend church worship at regular times throughout the year.
Collective Worship enables both adults and children to understand the importance of prayer through its modelling in worship. This is developed further through interactive reflective areas in the classroom; the prayer box available for all the school community; prayer within the classroom; and the school prayer station, which is changed once each short term.
As a Church of England Primary school within the Rochester Diocese, we are inspired by The Church of England Vision for Education (2016). This vision seeks to promote educational excellence and human flourishing. It has, at its core, a desire for 'life in all its fullness' (John 10:10).
The four main elements that are woven throughout the vision are:
- Educating for Wisdom, Knowledge and Skills: 'good schools foster confidence, delight and discipline in seeking wisdom, knowledge, truth, understanding, know-how, and the skills needed to shape life well'.
- Educating for Hope and Aspiration: 'good schools open up horizons of hope and aspiration, and guide pupils into ways of fulfilling them'.
- Educating for Community and Living Well Together: 'education needs to have a core focus on relationships and commitments, participation in communities and institutions, and the qualities of character that enable people to flourish together'.
- Educating for Dignity and Respect: 'human dignity, the ultimate worth of each person, is central to good education'.
At Hildenborough CE Primary School, we enjoy a very close relationship with our church: St. John’s Church, Hildenborough. As a school, we visit the church for worship at least once a term and a member of the clergy visits us weekly to lead worship in school.
The children also visit the church during Religious Education lessons to find out about various aspects of the church and services, such as baptism.
Through our association with the church, we are able to strengthen our links with the local community through visits to the Farmers’ Market (held in the church hall); our choir singing for members of the village community; and links with other local schools at some church services, e.g. Remembrance.
We also invite our parents and families to the church for services at Harvest, Easter and end of the school year (Year 6 Leavers).
Church School Inspection
The Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools (SIAMS) is the Church of England and Methodist Church’s outworking of the requirements of section 48 of the Education Act 2005. It is a key element of the life of all Church of England and Methodist schools in England.
SIAMS explores ways in which each school’s theologically rooted Christian vision drives its work and enables the school to live up to its foundation as a Church school.
We were inspected in May 2023. Our inspection report can be found below.