Schools, children and young people

Updated 1 June 2020. Church of England issues guidance for opening of schools and nurseries. 27 May 2020: Environment activity sheet

Latest updates for schools

The Church of England website’s Coronavirus pages contains a new Schools and Nurseries section including:

  • New FAQ ‘Can members of clergy and foundation school governors enter a school building?
  • New FAQWhen schools re-open can church buildings be used by schools as a place of worship or gathering?’

Please see the links below and downloads at the bottom of the page for the most up to date advice on planning the return to school.

Government guidance – Actions for Educational and Childcare settings to prepare for wider opening from 1st June 2020

Statement from Nigel Genders, Chief Education Officer for the Church of England on 18th May 2020

Government guidance – Actions for schools during the coronavirus outbreak 18th May 2020  Please note that this is an updated document and so there are new and changes to existing answers in the Q&A section, please read carefully

Government guidance – Overview of scientific information on coronavirus 15th May 2020  

Government guidance for planning to open Primary schools from 1st June 

Government guidance – Opening schools for more children and young people: Initial planning framework for schools in England 

Government advice for education and childcare providers in preparing to open from June 2020 

Government guidance for parents and carers regarding school closures during Coronavirus (Covid 19)


Is your school open? Can the Education team help?

During these extraordinary times, the diocesan education team will continue to offer support to children and young people through schools and parishes where they can. Find out more

Bereavement support

The education team has pulled together a range of materials to support bereaved children, young people and families. Go to the Bereavement Support page to find out more.

Colleague support

As the country unites to face the challenges of this pandemic then, so as schools should we. In this way nobody should feel alone even if we are physically distancing.

Colleagues from across the diocese have offered avenues of support and help from conversations to practical engagement with capacity and CPD opportunities, planning for schools returning, curriculum delivery etc. The following colleagues have directly offered support already:

  • Philip Bowditch, CEO of Bath & Wells Multi Academy Trust, has shared that BWMAT colleagues are happy to have supportive conversations with school leaders, especially church schools, at this time. they are also happy to share their own thoughts and documentation on planning for schools to reopen.
  • Alun Williams, CEO Midsomer Norton Schools Partnership, is also offering to support schools, especially smaller schools, in practical ways.
  • Suzanne Flack, CEO Redstart Learning Partnership, and Ian Robinson, CEO Oak Partnership, are also keen to facilitate information exchange with schools across the diocese and in particular across Somerset. They have also produced a list of supportive offers which you may wish to contact them about. The offer of support from Redstart Learning Partnership includes;
    • Developing a recovery plan
    • CPD programme for TAs to compete during lockdown and CPD programme for those working with SEMH pupils
    • Wellbeing resources to support all staff
    • SEMH programme for return to school
    • Use of IT to support home learning – especially use of Google Classrooms
    • Support for heads running schools on their own and enabling colleagues to  join regular heads of school meetings
    • To provide a contact with a colleagues in a similar setting and networking opportunities with other colleagues

We are sure other MATs across our diocese will also be equally keen to offer friendly hands of support and a listening ear, so please do get in touch with MATs, LAs and federations if you need to. Or contact your diocesan schools adviser (David or Karen) and let us help.

Below, you can download a prayer book for use during Coronavirus.

CPD Portal South West – Podcast on Leadership Resilience

Faith at Home

Faith at Home is a national Church of England campaign that builds on the work of Growing Faith and Everyday Faith to support the faith development and pastoral care of children and young people.

  • Experiences that inspire parents and families to grow in faith together in the ‘new daily normal’ of the home
  • Resources that equip children and young people to explore faith together and feel supported pastorally as part of school and church communities
  • Networks that connect school leaders, church leaders, chaplains to share great practice and build community together focused on the faith development of children and young people

Check out the Church of England Faith at Home section to find out more and to access a range of resources, whether you have a school role, are a parent or a church leader.

On social media keep up with the conversation using #FaithAtHome.

Worship for Everyone – Looking to the Rainbow

Looking to the Rainbow is a brand-new song from Nick & Becky Drake for schools to perform during the Covid-19 lockdown.

They’ve put together everything you’ll need to make your own version of the song featuring your school – whether the children are in isolation or if you’re at school with the children of key workers.

Take a look at the Worship for Everyone website to find out more.

It’s Your Move

It’s Your Move is a resource book from Scripture Union filled with information, tips and activities to help Yr6 children prepare to move up to Yr7 in the new academic year. The book covers all the concerns they face during this stage of life, including what to expect, getting to and from school, how to handle homework, how to make friends and more. The book also includes first hand hints and tips from Yr 7 pupils from their own recent experiences. Created as a resource for churches to support schools, It’s Your Move also includes information about how a faith in Jesus can be a source of peace and comfort during this season. Click here to visit the It’s Your Move webpage and buy your copies.

Resources for children and young people

Visit the Go Team’s section of the website for a range of helpful resources, including the Bible Chat Mat and the LecDec. The Go Team are active on social media so do follow them for a host of other useful content on Instagram and Twitter. You can also sign up for ‘Inform’ , their regular e-bulletin.

You could also check out the following:

  • Pioneer minister Katherine Lyddon is holding a daily collective worship, visit  Katherine’s YouTube channel and tune in daily at 9:30, straight after you’ve done Joe Wick’s workout!
  • Movement has taken their worship on line. They have also launched the Movement Podcast, the first episode of which looks at creative ways you can make an impact.
  • Scruffy TV is a channel set up by vicar the Revd Philip Hawthorne, St Stephen’s and St Mary’s, Bath, also known as @RevdRaindogs, who is also the man who helped bring the Tweenies and other #Cbeebies classics to life! Find him on his YouTube channel
  • Environment and nature – each week for the next four weeks, our new environment team adviser, Sara Jeffrey, will be publishing family activity sheets packed full of ideas on how families can engage with nature together and remind us how awesome creation is. Download the sheets below.
  • Compass for Life – a family resource which aligns with the CofE Vision for Education.

Who to contact

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