Collective Worship is an affirmation and celebration of each school’s distinctive Christian vision and ethos. It is the ‘heartbeat’ of the school day.
The New SIAMS Framework (September 2023) asks the question:
IQ3 How is collective worship enabling pupils and adults to flourish spiritually?
At the centre of this will be the school’s Christian vision and the theological roots it is drawn from. Collective worship is a place to explore this through biblical teachings and hearing of the life of Jesus. Collective worship is that special time in the day the community can take time to reflect, be invited to pray or to think deeply.
What is Collective Worship?
Collective Worship is a gathering of a ‘collection’ of people of diverse religious, agnostic and non-religious backgrounds and does not pre-suppose any particular religious commitment. It is educational and inclusive in its nature, rather than being a gathering of believers. The school community is a collection of people from different backgrounds and if school collective worship is to be meaningful, it must be sensitive to this. The use of the term collective is important in that it recognises that pupils and staff will subscribe to a range of beliefs, and that there is a need to provide opportunities for all to share in Collective Worship in a way which make sense to them and is appropriate to their stage of development. Visitors to Collective Worship are a valued and important part of what a church school provides for its pupils. It enriches pupils understanding of a diversity of beliefs and responses to the world around them.
The law requires that every pupil should have a daily act of Collective Worship which is ‘wholly’ Christian for church schools and ‘broadly’ Christian in maintained schools.
The impact of Collective Worship and the ways in which Collective Worship is an expression of a school’s distinctive Christian vision is at the heart of the SIAMS schedule. Therefore, as a diocese we believe that Collective Worship should be inclusive, invitational and inspiring for those of all faiths and none, with pupils taking a regular lead. It is an affirmation and celebration of each school/academy’s distinctive Christian vision and ethos where children and adults have the opportunity to learn, worship and grow in their understanding of God and of themselves. We believe that we and our children are made in the image of God and that worship is a vital factor in this image becoming more real and meaningful. We believe that at its heart, Collective Worship enables pupils and staff to gather together to respond to the presence, power and peace of God through prayer, reflection, singing, sharing and communicating feelings. It is important that within Collective Worship, there is the opportunity to appreciate and respond to a variety of styles found in the diversity of the Christian church together with enabling participants to develop an understanding of Anglian liturgy and the Trinity.
Collective Worship Network
The collective Worship Network meets four times a year online to receive updates, share ideas and resources to support high quality worship in schools.
Click HERE for the planned content for the network in the coming year
To register to join the network that runs 2-4pm online in usually September/November/January and May please book on eventbrite.
- Cheesy School Favourites Playlist
- Collective Worship in a Church of England school – The legal elements
- Model policy for Collective Worship
- Planning a Programme of Collective Worship
- Making worship meaningful – some top tips
- Evidencing the impact of Collective Worship
- Liturgical Year 2021/22– a guide to the colours of the altar cloth
- Auditing collective worship in your school based on the national guidance May 2021
- Monitoring grid – A SIAMS based monitored grid by Oxford Diocese
Useful websites for Collective Worship:
Ideas for Collective Worship in schools
- A scheme of work for developing an understanding of The Lord’s Prayer
- For fresh ideas planning Collective Worship linked to the new schedule use Worship Workshop or Canterbury Diocese’s Collective Worship Fresh Approach
- www.spinnaker.org.uk – Includes ideas for celebrating Christian festivals, as well as stories with a Christian message
- www.sermons4kids.com – Christian illustrations and Powerpoint storyboards
- www.assemblies.org.uk – Good all-round resource for developing acts of worship
- For value based planning linked the the GERS pattern click here
- Spiritual development and outdoor worship ideas from Litchfield diocese
Acts of Collective Worship for special events in primary schools and academies
We are delighted to share with you our booklet on Collective Worship for special events in primary schools and academies:
Eucharist is the central service for most Anglicans. This guidance has been created in consultation with schools, clergy and the DBE.