Educating children in the Catholic tradition means being part of a warm, caring and compassionate community in which everyone is encouraged to think about others and care for our environment. The implications of ‘loving our neighbour as ourselves’ leads naturally to the pursuit of our core values which include seeking joy and peace in all things; and, developing characteristics of faithfulness, patience, goodness, gentleness, kindness and self-control. These are all things that we seek to find in our daily lives in School. We believe that our ‘ethos’ gives us a reference point and an anchor to who we are and who we would like to be. In doing this we encourage our children to look out from themselves, to have regard for those who less fortunate, and engage with issues that challenge us to develop greater respect for the individual worth of every human. Ultimately, we believe that educating children in the Catholic tradition means that they can grow in a safe and nurturing environment that allows them to express themselves and engenders confidence and respect and encourages traits of self-knowledge, reflection, strength of character and a sense of justice and fairness in a world that is not always just or fair.
The Handmaids and the Ignatian Tradition
Saint Christina’s School was founded in 1949 by the Handmaids of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the Ignatian tradition which places great value on learning in its purest sense, alongside the development of the skills of listening, reflection, self-knowledge and independence. The Handmaid’s believe that a child’s education should be a transformational experience, intellectually, emotionally and in terms of character, values and a sense of place in the world: the ‘pedagogy of the heart’.
At Saint Christina’s therefore you will find:
1. A school in which learning is highly prized.
We take a robust, ambitious approach to education that emphasises intellectual rigour and curiosity, creativity, passion, and a desire to seek out and cultivate a sense of awe and wonder in all of our learning. The performance of each child is keenly monitored and supported to ensure that every child makes the very best progress in their learning. It is a matter of considerable pride that the children have a fantastic attitude to their learning and achieve places in some of the most hotly contested secondary setting at 11+. [INSERT a hyperlink to the destination of leavers page]
2. A school that places great importance on pastoral care.
We are interested in ‘growing children’ in the broadest sense and in so doing endeavour to create an environment that allows them to feel happy and safe. We want them to feel that they can speak to anyone about any worries or concerns and through the structures we have in place, develop ever growing individual confidence over mental, physical and spiritual well-being. Alongside the close and trusting relationship that the children have with their teachers, extra elements of support are in place to help children who might need extra support from time to time, such as, small breakout focus groups, the work of the Learning Support staff and with regard to mental well-being, attending sessions where they can speak about their feelings with the ‘pat’ dog.
3. A school that places importance on the formation of character
We want to encourage the development of confidence, resilience, and compassion. We want the children who leave our community to be people who are valued for their kindness and their ability and desire to add to any environment that they become a part of. We want our children to have a strong sense of justice and fairness, the ability to absorb ideas, engage in robust discussion, exchange views confidently and modestly and adapt ideas on the basis of consideration and not whim, and hope that all will, in whatever walk of life that they choose to follow, be people who make a difference.
Saint Christina’s School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. It is our aim that all pupils fulfil their potential.