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At Benson we ensure that, “pupils have opportunities to learn about faith in a way that promotes tolerance and harmony between different cultural and religious traditions.” Ofsted 2014

At Benson we try to reflect our community through our daily acts of collective worship. The children often take an active role in these assemblies, outside groups are invited into school throughout the year and lead either a full assembly or contribute to a part of the worship.

We use the time together to reflect on our successes both in and out of school and to celebrate these.

Collective Worship Policy

At Benson we ensure that, “pupils have opportunities to learn about faith in a way that promotes tolerance and harmony between different cultural and religious traditions.” Ofsted 2014

The Legal requirements:

The head teacher is responsible for arranging daily collective worship (assembly)
Daily collective worship must be wholly or mainly of a broadly Christian character but only 51 per cent need be identifiably ‘Christian’ with the remaining 49 per cent reflecting other faiths or ‘interests’ over the course of a year
It can happen at any time of the school day and should generally happen on the school premises
Parents can withdraw children from assemblies
Teachers may withdraw from assemblies
The school’s annual prospectus contains information about collective worship and how parents may withdraw their children from it.

Acts of Collective Worship provide opportunities for our school community to meet together as a whole school, Phase, year group and class. In order to develop this aim, our acts of Collective Worship should:

Promote the spiritual, moral and cultural development of the pupils
Be quality learning opportunities relevant to our children’s experiences
Provide a time for reflection and thinking away from the busy school routine
Provide time for children to consider and explore their own beliefs and those of other children
Provide opportunities for children to worship if they wish
Enable opportunities to incorporate aspects of the Prevent Policy

Who leads assemblies?

The Head Teacher, Deputy Head and other members of the SLT normally conduct assemblies. Class teachers are expected to lead Phase assemblies on a rota basis.

Organisation of Collective Worship:

Assemblies are conducted in a dignified and respectful way. We tell children that assembly time is a period of calm reflection. We regard it is as a special time and expect children to behave in an appropriate way. We encourage children to be quiet and thoughtful and to listen carefully to the teachings and participate fully in periods of reflection. We have an expectation that children close their eyes to have deeper reflective thoughts.

We hold a whole school act of Collective Worship three times per week. Over the academic year each class has the opportunity to take part in a Whole Class Assembly.

Once a week at some point in the school day each class hosts an assembly. These are structured differently and takes form as a circle time or Ask it (Philosophy for children) session.

There is also an opportunity over the academic year for each Phase to have a singing assembly. When not singing, the Phase will take part in an act of worship/ celebration assemblies.

We create an appropriate atmosphere by using music and other objects that act as a focal point for the attention of the children. We also invite carefully vetted visitors to come and lead assemblies such as, Birmingham City Mission. At Christmas and Easter the Hands Outstretched School Team visits our school to do special assemblies. We also invite other local clergy and representatives of local religious groups to conduct assemblies whenever it is appropriate for them to do so.

To ensure that children experience different places of worship we organise carefully planned visits of a particular year group to a place of worship. This gives children the opportunity to observe and compare different religious buildings and practices.

We take the themes for our assemblies from the traditions of the Christian Faith and we reflect other specific religious festivals, significant days and special occasions as identified throughout the year.

The themes for our assemblies and class assemblies also reflect and build on topics that we teach as part of the school curriculum- Based on the New National Curriculum 2014

Our assemblies seek to develop the spiritual and moral dispositions of the pupils as identified in The Birmingham Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education 2007.

Our assemblies reflect the achievements and learning of the children. Assemblies offer an opportunity to acknowledge and reward children for their achievements both in and out of school. They play an important part in promoting the ethos of the school which is that all children are valued and all achievements are recognised. Benson Community School is a successful school and our assemblies enable us to celebrate the achievements of our children.

We invite parents to assembly regularly and we encourage them to attend as this promotes the community spirit of the school and is a practical demonstration of the way the home and the school work together to support the learning and achievements of our children.

We welcome and encourage governor’s attendance at our assembly at any time.

Right of withdrawal:

Parents have the right to withdraw their children from any or all acts of collective worship. Reasons for this request do not have to be provided. The school will make alternative arrangements for the supervision of the child during this time.