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All Saints Church of England Junior School

Loving All Our Neighbours

Religious Education

Religious Education (RE) Curriculum

Intent

As a Voluntary Controlled school, we were established by the Church of England to serve families in the local area but we are not a faith school.  It is not a requirement to be a member of any Christian denomination and, indeed, our community is made up of people from many different faiths and those of none. We aim to serve all with a rounded education which includes RE. The teaching of Religious Education is central to our curriculum, being one of our core subjects alongside English, Maths and Science and, equally, the 1988 Education Act states that 'Religious Education has equal standing in relation to core subjects of the National Curriculum in that it is compulsory for all registered pupils'.

Also, per the Church of England's Statement of Entitlement on religious education in Church of England schools, religious education in a Church school should enable every child to flourish and to live life in all its fullness. (John 10:10).

Every Local Authority is required by law to have a SACRE, (Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education). The key responsibilities of SACRE are to advise the Authority upon matters connected with RE and collective worship in the Local Authority's schools, matters such as teaching methods, materials and teacher training are mentioned in the Act. Our intention is to have representation on the RBWM SACRE to ensure we are well informed on developments in this area and, currently, Mr Rhodes - our Headteacher - sits on the SACRE, representing Primary Heads in the area.

At All Saints CE Junior School, RE is taught in accordance with the locally agreed pan-Berkshire syllabus. We provide a daily act of collective worship for all pupils via whole-school assemblies and in-class reflections. The aim of collective worship is to develop pupils spiritually, morally, socially and culturally as well as promoting British values. Our shared values link to British Values as follows:

Under the guidance of our RE Subject Leader, we adapt lessons from Understanding Christianity and ‘Discovery RE', a published scheme of work, to help us plan and teach the Pan-Berkshire Agreed Syllabus of Religious Education 2018-2023. Using these, our intent is to:

  • Make RE a learning experience for children to look forward to
  • Provide pupils with a safe enquiry space that encourages deep questioning, critical thinking and evaluation skills through an enquiry-based approach
  • Support personal spiritual development and awareness, helping children understand other people and belief systems (Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism are covered alongside Christianity) in a pluralistic world, celebrating diversity while consolidating each child's own belief systems
  • Provide evidence for Ofsted & SIAMS inspections with enhanced RE outcomes and Christian ethos for SIAMS
  • Map SMSC (Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural) development opportunities alongside British Values within RE lessons and in the wider curriculum
  • Provide a clear structure for the planning, teaching and assessment of RE for the whole school

Implementation

RE is a statutory subject of the curriculum for all pupils in each year group and 'should be provided for all registered pupils except those withdrawn at the request of their parents' (s71 SSFA 1998)  While parents have the right to request that their child be excused from all or part of the RE provided at school, we note that our collective worship (where children are asked to reflect upon and pray over ideas and issues in a manner reflective of their own traditions and beliefs or to listen respectfully, considering what the matter at hand means to them and others) and moments of reflection and how we recognise and reward children (in part by how they demonstrate our Shared Values) are seeded throughout every school day: consequently, our view is that any parent sending their child to All Saints is in agreement with our vision, values, ethos and teaching of RE as all these elements are core components of our identity.

RE is taught on a weekly basis in each year group and is also delivered through whole school RE days when the pupils mix year groups and take part in activities and celebrations (sometimes with parents and carers invited in to take part) designed to further enrich their understanding of a religious tradition or festival. These days are:

  • All Saints Day (around 1st November: whole school commemoration of our patronal festival)
  • Christmas (led by Lower School pupils towards the end of the Autumn Term)
  • Easter (led by Upper School pupils in the middle of the Spring Term)
  • The Festival of St Peter & St Paul (around 29th June: parents and families are invited in for a whole-school CommUNITY Day, which includes a picnic, pupil performances and a sharing of their work)

Lessons are planned and delivered in a variety of ways so that all children can participate fully. Interactive, practical activities linked to the themes in the syllabus and other subjects where appropriate, encourage our pupils to discuss their ideas and extend their understanding of difficult concepts and challenging questions.

Pupils' progress in RE is based on the expected outcomes outlined in the Agreed Syllabus and in Understanding Christianity, which have been developed in line with guidance produced nationally. Pupils are assessed regularly on a formative basis and their progress is monitored against these objectives. These outcomes form the basis of our school assessment system. Progress and attainment in RE is reported annually to parents.

Impact

Our pupils have a better understanding of several religions that make up the UK and world landscape and how they can learn from and work alongside each other to create and celebrate community cohesion, providing them with the degree of global awareness 21st-century citizens need to be able to understand and communicate more fully with the people they may go on to meet in life. They are also more informed about their position in the world, and the decisions they can make impacting their future. Our pupils can talk confidently about their well-being, moral and cultural development for the societies in which they live.

Our RE curriculum promotes inquisitive minds, respect, acceptance and understanding for all those around them including themselves. This is evidenced in many ways; through our pupils using the correct vocabulary, explanations and respectful opinions, as well as cross-curricular evidence, for example religious and cultural art work, drama, craft and presentations. 

The RE Subject Leader, the Headteacher and other Senior Leaders take responsibility for the monitoring of the RE curriculum and the standards achieved by the children. The RE Subject Leader will monitor for appropriate pitch and progression according to our agreed monitoring schedule. This monitoring takes the form of:

  1. lesson observations and feedback;
  2. learning walks and pupil voice conversations;
  3. planning scrutiny followed by support where necessary;
  4. book-looks on a frequent basis;
  5. termly data analysis which is collated and reported to school leaders as well as Governors and the Diocesan Advisor;
  6. collaborative and transitional opportunities for our KS2 pupils, as well as staff, to engage with local institutions, including the Church, other schools and the Diocese, in enrichment projects.

Termly performance data will be analysed by the RE Subject Leader and targets agreed by identifying trends, highlighting ‘stuck’ pupils and focusing on next steps. Where whole-school improvements become evident, the associated actions for recovery will be shared with school leaders, teachers, Governors and the diocese and will be included on the school's Improvement Plan.

Religious Education in Church of England Schools

Collective Worship Policy

A Distinctive Church School Ethos

DfE guidance about RE in the curriculum and the roles of those who have a responsibility for, involvement in or interest in the subject

Promoting fundamental British values as part of SMSC in schools

Useful Websites

The following provide a selection of websites useful to parents, carers, teachers and school leaders:

Religious Education Curriculum Queries

Please use this form to contact Mr Mckrell, the RE Subject Leader.

LOVING ALL OUR NEIGHBOURS - John 15: 12 'This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.'
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