Press Release - February 2015

Staff and pupils from Saint Paul's High School in Wythenshawe joined together to mark Safer Internet Day, a national initiative to promote the safe and responsible use of technology.

Digital literacy skills are key life skills for all children and young people these days: for example, knowing how to effectively search for and evaluate online content, knowing how to protect personal information and reputation, respecting copyright and intellectual property, and knowing where to get help if problems are encountered. Saint Paul’s wants its pupils to develop these skills, and continually looks for opportunities across the curriculum to reinforce online safety messages.

The pupils were given some valuable advice for keeping safe on the internet by boy band ‘In Hindsight’. As well as performing some of their recently released tracks, the band members were in school to warn learners about the risks of cyber-bullying and its effects. They gave out lots of tips about things to do and not to do when online and also held a question and answer session on the subject.

The band said: “Just a few years ago we were at school, so we have been in your position before. We know exactly what pressures you are under and what you go through at school; what we’re here to do today is to help you guys make the right decisions in life, and to stay safe online.”

Mrs Claire Hunt, Assistant Head Teacher at Saint Paul’s, said: “Today the online world is very much part of children’s lives; technology is embedded in every aspect of their lives whether it is work or play. They are growing up in a digital world and we want to promote the safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones. It is important to teach the pupils about best practice, safety and personal responsibility.”

“New digital technologies offer a wealth of opportunities for children and young people – they can learn, create and communicate in a myriad of ways,” explained Mrs Fiona Minshall, Head Teacher at Saint Paul’s. “As a school, we work hard to promote good behaviour online. We have a responsibility to keep or pupils safe and this includes helping them to use new digital technologies safely and responsibly, wherever and whenever they go online.”

 

--- ENDS ---

Notes for Editors

  1. Saint Paul’s received congratulations from the Rt Hon David Laws MP Minister of State for Schools when they were recognised as one of the 100 most improved schools in the country.
  1. At the last Ofsted inspection of the school, the following comments were made by the inspectors: “Good teaching enables students to make good progress and achieve well. Relationships between teachers and students are strong. They result in good behaviour.”

The report stated that the school is “enabling students to learn effectively and make good progress. Attainment is rising rapidly as a result. Achievement for all students, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities and those with English as an additional language, is good.”

  1. The Ofsted report is reinforced by the preceding inspection of the school  by the Diocese of Shrewsbury under the guidance of the Bishop of Shrewsbury. The Diocese report stated “Saint Paul’s is a good Catholic school. The Head and Senior Leadership Team have a clear vision ….. an outstanding feature of the school is the pastoral care of students and the support of staff.”
  1. On 1st April, 2013 Saint Paul’s Catholic High School joined with St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School and St John Fisher and Thomas More Catholic Primary School to form the Wythenshawe Catholic Academy Trust (MAT – Multi Trust Academy). St Elizabeth's Catholic Primary School later joined the Trust.
  1. Saint Paul’s was the first school in Manchester to be awarded Engineering College status.
  1. The work of Saint Paul’s drama teacher, Ms Ellie Brookes, was recognised with her winning the much coveted North West Teacher of the Year Award. Also Head of Humanities at Saint Paul’s, Ms Ursula Gallagher, gained third place in the Outstanding New Teacher of the Year category of the Northern Area Teacher of the Year.
  1. Lively approaches to teaching maintain vigour and ensure that firm foundations are established for higher level work. The school has a modern approach to learning supported by a programme of constant refurbishment and development of its facilities and resources.
  1. The aims of the school are to:
    • Teach and foster a Christian perspective in all that it does
    • Provide teaching of the highest calibre
    • Promote excellence in all areas
    • Develop the ability, talents and character of each pupil, enabling them to make their own unique contribution to school life
    • Encourage boys to play their part in helping the community run smoothly and effectively, by taking on responsibility and leadership

More information about Saint Paul’s Catholic High School can be found at www.st-paulshigh.net or contact Jane McAuliffe-Hall (Marketing and Publicity Manager) at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or on 0161 499 0000.

 

Press Statement – 17 February 2015

Relationship & Sex Education (RSE) is essential for young people to learn about the nature of marriage, family life and relationships, taught in an age appropriate way. In Catholic schools RSE must be taught in the context of Church teaching and with the full consultation and involvement of parents.

The Catholic Education Service (CES) submitted written evidence to the Education Select Committee inquiry on PSHE and SRE and were called to give oral evidence. We are pleased that our comments are shown within many of the Committee’s recommendations.

We welcome the Committee’s support for the role of parents in RSE. This is shown in their recommendations that all schools should be required to run a regular consultation with parents on the school’s RSE provision and that the parental right to withdraw their child from elements of RSE should be retained.

We welcome the Committee’s emphasis on relationships within RSE. The CES will continue to highlight the importance of teaching RSE within a context which considers Church teaching, parents’ wishes and the culture of the community that the school serves. We believe in subsidiarity and that Governing Bodies should be able to decide what resources are most appropriate for the school.

We also welcome funding of continuous professional development for teachers and Ofsted’s oversight of the subject. We congratulate The John Henry Newman Catholic School, a secondary comprehensive school in Stevenage, as the best practice example used by the Committee to illustrate what outstanding RSE looks like.

Ends

Currently, Catholic schools, like all other schools in England, are required to produce a written policy following the guidance issued by the Department for Education on Sex and Relationship Education (SRE).

Education Select Committee’s Report can be found here: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201415/cmselect/cmeduc/145/14502.htm

A summary of the Education Selection Committee’s report can be found here: http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/education-committee/news/pshe-sre-report/

More information can be found on Ofsted’s website about The John Henry Newman Catholic School as providers of outstanding sex and relationships education in a Catholic context https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/outstanding-sex-and-relationships-education-in-a-catholic-context

Catholic schools make up 10% of the national total of maintained schools. There are 2156 Catholic schools in England educating 816,007 pupils and employing 47,986 teachers.

 

Press Release - February 2015

The children from the Green Fingers Club at Saint Paul's High School in Wythenshawe are passionate about developing their new school garden and have been out and about raising money to fund this development. 

This week a group of the enthusiastic pupils gave up their Saturday to “bag pack” at a local supermarket to raise money to support the creation of the Gifted Garden and Outdoor Classroom.

Mrs Angie Holland, who organized and supervised the fund raising, said: “The children freely gave up their spare time and were very enthusiastic about helping the shoppers. I was very impressed; they were fantastic ambassadors for Saint Paul’s.”

Mrs Cathie Halbert, who isleading the projectand helped alongside the pupils, said: “The pupils are dedicated to the creation of a beautiful garden which everyone at the school and in the local community can share. They are rightly proud of the work they have done so far and are looking forward to developing the garden further. We have already been impressed by the range of fruit and vegetables which they have grown. We are pleased to see that this is having a positive impact on their food habits and attitudes encouraging more healthy food choices.

We are bonding well as we work together to overcome our fear of creepy crawlies!  I have been really impressed by the way the pupils ‘get stuck in’ to the grubby tasks with as much gusto as the high profile tasks.  The year groups are spreading as we have now have Years 7-10 involved now. It’s a great way for the pupils to mix socially as well as in a work environment.”

“The garden will offer many benefits to the school including hands-on, experiential learning opportunities in a wide array of disciplines such as science, nutrition, maths and the arts,” explained Mrs Fiona Minshall, Head Teacher at Saint Paul’s. “Already, whilst working in the garden, we can see the pupils developing skills such as the communication of knowledge or emotions which will help them be more successful in school.”
 

--- ENDS ---

  Notes for Editors

  1. Saint Paul’s received congratulations from the Rt Hon David Laws MP Minister of State for Schools when they were recognised as one of the 100 most improved schools in the country.
  1. At the last Ofsted inspection of the school, the following comments were made by the inspectors: “Good teaching enables students to make good progress and achieve well. Relationships between teachers and students are strong. They result in good behaviour.”

The report stated that the school is “enabling students to learn effectively and make good progress. Attainment is rising rapidly as a result. Achievement for all students, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities and those with English as an additional language, is good.”

  1. The Ofsted report is reinforced by the preceding inspection of the school  by the Diocese of Shrewsbury under the guidance of the Bishop of Shrewsbury. The Diocese report stated “Saint Paul’s is a good Catholic school. The Head and Senior Leadership Team have a clear vision ….. an outstanding feature of the school is the pastoral care of students and the support of staff.”
  1. On 1st April, 2013 Saint Paul’s Catholic High School joined with St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School and St John Fisher and Thomas More Catholic Primary School to form the Wythenshawe Catholic Academy Trust (MAT – Multi Trust Academy). St Elizabeth's Catholic Primary School later joined the Trust.
  1. Saint Paul’s was the first school in Manchester to be awarded Engineering College status.
  1. The work of Saint Paul’s drama teacher, Ms Ellie Brookes, was recognised with her winning the much coveted North West Teacher of the Year Award. Also Head of Humanities at Saint Paul’s, Ms Ursula Gallagher, gained third place in the Outstanding New Teacher of the Year category of the Northern Area Teacher of the Year.
  1. Lively approaches to teaching maintain vigour and ensure that firm foundations are established for higher level work. The school has a modern approach to learning supported by a programme of constant refurbishment and development of its facilities and resources.
  1. The aims of the school are to:
    • Teach and foster a Christian perspective in all that it does
    • Provide teaching of the highest calibre
    • Promote excellence in all areas
    • Develop the ability, talents and character of each pupil, enabling them to make their own unique contribution to school life
    • Encourage boys to play their part in helping the community run smoothly and effectively, by taking on responsibility and leadership

More information about Saint Paul’s Catholic High School can be found at www.st-paulshigh.net or contact Jane McAuliffe-Hall (Marketing and Publicity Manager) at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or on 0161 499 0000.

 

Press Release – 13 February 2015
 
The Rt Hon David Laws MP, Minister of State for Schools, has written to Catholic schools across the country to congratulate them on the work they have done to improve the attainment of their disadvantaged pupils.
21 Catholic Secondary schools were awarded with £5,000 as qualifying KS4 schools in the Pupil Premium Awards. The Award rewards schools that are able to provide evidence of effective strategies to improve the achievement of disadvantaged pupils and show sustained improvement in raising their attainment.
 
Paul Barber, Director of the Catholic Education said; “It is a testimony to the hard work of staff and pupils in Catholic schools that our sector is overrepresented in this award. Catholic schools’ mission to the poor and vulnerable is clearly being played out in all Catholic schools and the 21 schools who have won this award are exemplary of this. Congratulations to all those schools.”
 
Catholic schools were over represented constituting 15% of the 140 of secondary schools that had qualified. All the schools have been invited to apply for the next regional and national stages of the award.
 
Paul Stubbings, Headmaster of The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School , a winner of the Award, said, “This award is really welcome to us because, on top of our excellent raw results, it recognises the hard and effective work we have been doing for years to add value to the education of our most disadvantaged pupils. This in practice means higher grades and improved life chances.” 
 

Press release – Tuesday 10 February 2015

The Catholic Education Service is providing schools and teachers with resources to use in the run up to the general election. The resources follow the theme of ‘Active Citizenship’.

The CES has produced a collection of resources for schools and teachers to use in order to encourage Catholics of school-age to take part in active citizenship. The resources are available to download from the CES website www.catholiceducation.org.uk and include: lesson resources on the political process, lesson resources on the Church and politics, theological resources on what the Church says about ‘active citizens’, saints and prayer cards, profiles of Catholics in public life, and useful links.

The director of the CES, Paul Barber, said, “These resources are an excellent way for schools and teachers to encourage active citizenship in their pupils from a young age. The range is age-appropriate and uses the Catechism of the Catholic Church to reflect the ways in which Catholic values assist and support the objectives of active citizenship.

As the general election approaches, the work of the CES links to the call of the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales for all Catholics "to think about the kind of society we want here at home and abroad." For Catholics over the age of 18 and eligible to vote this means to engage positively in the democratic process, but for Catholics of all ages this means to reflect on and act to ensure we are all active citizens. 

Press release – CatholicYouthWork.com Launch, Feast of St John Bosco, 31st of January

Don Bosco Goes Digital! A Fresh Resource For Youth Ministers

Today, on the feast of St John Bosco, the Salesians re-launch CatholicYouthWork.com a resource for everyone who is involved in working with young people in the Church. It offers a place for resources, jobs, a forum to share ideas and find support as well as somewhere to keep up to date with the latest youth ministry news and events. Dermott Donnelly, Chair of CYMFed, the Catholic Youth Ministry Federation in England and Wales, said, "this is a fantastic resource that will help strengthen and support the Church's important work with young people".

"We know there are lots of people out there doing great work with young people", Chris Knowles, Editor of the site said, "they're all doing fantastic things, having amazing ideas and putting exciting plans into action, but the problem is that we're too often disconnected from one another. This site is a place we can all come together to share ideas, resources and good practice, and was designed specifically to facilitate this. So we invite you to come onto the site, join the forum and start to share ideas and resources!"

The Salesians have invested in the site since taking it on last summer, Provincial Fr Martin Coyle thought it was important to start this new project because "it's a great way to use new technology to help those who minister to young people, there really isn't anything else like this out there. This year we celebrate the bicentenary of the birth of St John Bosco, so while he wouldn't recognise a website if he saw one, he did love new technology like the railways and the modern printing presses of his time, things that made it easier to bring people together and share the Gospel. This project is particularly appropriate way for us to continue to live out his mission today"

The site is a resource that is offered completely free of charge, anyone can register to get involved in the forum and receive our resource and ideas emails. The site is strengthened by more people getting involved because as they get involved in sharing resources and ideas, we can better resource and support people in their work. Last year we attracted between 5 and 11 thousand page views each month, and we hope this will grow as we keep the site up to date with new resources and ideas for people who work with the young in the Church.

Notes for editors

  • http://CatholicYouthWork.com - new site live now
  • The site relies on local practitioners getting involved in the site, sharing resources, ideas and good practice as well as being there to support others.
  • CatholicYouthWork.com has over 900 registered users and last year attracted between 5 and 11 thousand page views each month. 
  • Jack Regan created the site in 2007 out of a desire to use the internet to bring people in Catholic youth work together to share ideas and resources. Over the years the site grew and had a thriving community forum, but in time became too big to be managed on a voluntary basis alongside full time work. Jack Regan is now Youth Advisor for Arundel and Brighton Diocese.
  • The Salesians bought the site in the summer of 2014, and they have been planning and developing the new site in consultation with many people involved in youth ministry. Responsibility for it going to Salesian Link, the Media and social communications office of the Province.
  • Chris Knowles, the new editor has been involved in youth ministry for many years, having worked as a Lay Chaplain at Loreto 6th Form College in Manchester and Savio House, the Salesian Retreat Centre in Macclesfield
  • The site is supported by donations, paid job adverts and a substantial contribution from the Salesians of Don Bosco in Great Britain.
  • The bicentenary of the birth of St John Bosco is on the 16th of August 2015, a series of events celebrating it are planned, more information about this can be found here http://www.salesians.org.uk/bi-centenary/2015-celebrating-the-bi-centenary-of-don-boscos-birth.html

For more information, contact Chris Knowles at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on 07732442308

Flame2 is the largest National Catholic Youth event of 2015, taking place in the SSE Wembley Arena on Saturday 7th March 2015.


Doors open at 11, and Flame2 starts at 12, finishing at 5.30pm.
The SSE Wembley Arena will be filled with 10,000 young people from across the country, receiving faith-filled inspiration from world class speakers. Confirmed speakers include Cardinal Luis Tagle from Manila, Philippines; Baroness Sheila Hollins; Fr Timothy Radcliffe OP; and David Wells.

Throughout the day speakers will give bursts of input, interspersed with world class music and drama, in an atmosphere full of joy. Music will be provided by double grammy award winning Matt Redman and his band. The day ends with a time of Adoration led by Cardinal Vincent Nichols.
Flame2 is open to anyone in school year ten and above, up to young adult (i.e. aged approx. 14-21).
Bookings will be accepted from groups of ten or more.

 

{youtube}www.youtube.com/watch?v=UG1Y9NqAfm0|560|315{/youtube}

For more infomation please see CYMFED's website

Below is a letter from Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbiship of Westminster and President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales.

Monday, 15 December 2014 00:00

Saint Paul’s Take Part in Parliament Week

Press Release - 15th December 2014

The goal of Parliament Week is to engage young people with the democratic process, and this was certainly embraced by the pupils of Saint Paul’s Catholic High School in Wythenshawe. As part of Parliament Week the pupils engaged in a multitude of activities aimed at raising awareness and understanding of Parliament and democracy in the UK.

The aim of Parliament Week is to highlight the work and history of the UK Parliament, how it is relevant to UK citizens and how pupils can get involved in the democratic process. The event was founded in 2011, and is co-ordinated by the House of Commons with support from the House of Lords.

At Saint Paul’s, the pupils took part in an open debate group, a Question Time with the Head Teacher and the week culminated with whole school parliament elections.

“We were very keen to get our pupils involved in Parliament Week and raise their awareness of the democratic process,” explained Ms Michelle Davies, School Parliament Link teacher. “The programme of events at Saint Paul’s was designed to inspire, engage and connect our pupils with parliamentary democracy. It’s been a fantastic opportunity for them to take part in a nation-wide initiative that helps them become better informed about their Parliament.”

“Parliament Week was a great opportunity for our pupils to engage and connect with politics and their Parliament,” commented Mrs Fiona Minshall, Head Teacher at Saint Paul’s. “The Week also offered a fantastic opportunity to highlight the work and history of the Houses of Parliament and to discuss Parliament’s relevance with students.”

Ends.

Monday, 15 December 2014 00:00

OFSTED confusion over British Values

Press Release - 15th December 2014

St Benedict's Catholic School in Bury St Edmunds was shocked to learn that the school has been placed on an Ofsted list of schools that are not dealing effectively with extremism and radicalism, despite Ofsted inspectors highlighting none of these concerns in their recent no-notice inspection in September.

Mr O'Neill, Headteacher of St Benedict's, said, "I can only suppose that the inclusion of St Benedict's on the list was the result of the first "flawed" inspection report. I could just about understand how that error might have occurred. What worries me is that Ofsted were informed of the mistake two weeks ago, and have failed to provide an adequate response. It is also very disturbing that, if they do maintain that the dangers of radicalisation and extremism still exist at St Benedict's, they have done nothing to inform me, the governors or the Diocesan Education Office of the danger.

"We have had to accept that the no-notice inspection was not triggered by the "Trojan horse" affair, but was a routine inspection- despite the fact that it took place less than 18 months after our previous inspection. The continuing accusation that this school is one of a handful identified with radicalisation and extremism concerns is hugely disturbing. I think parents and the local community deserve to know why St Benedict's Catholic School remains at the centre of this Ofsted focus, when their Senior HMI, Asyia Khazmi, assured both me and the governors that she was satisfied that no such concern remained.''

Paul Barber, Director of the Catholic Education Service, said, "We are extremely concerned that Ofsted is publicly listing St Benedict's as one of the eleven schools which 'were not preparing pupils for life in Britain today.' These concerns cannot be found in the School's Ofsted report. This is an unjust and unsubstantiated accusation and we hope Ofsted will clarify this matter and apologise to the school and parents for the confusion and upset caused.

"We are proud that Catholic schools promote values that are both Catholic and British, including: respect for the individual, democracy, individual liberty, respect, tolerance and inclusiveness. Our schools promote cohesion by serving more ethnically diverse and poorer communities. Catholic schools provide high standards of education which are popular with parents from all social, economic and faith backgrounds.

"We welcome the role of Ofsted in ensuring accountability, transparency and inclusive education for all, regardless of belief. However it is essential that Ofsted provides support and clarification for their own staff on the matter of British Values to prevent mistakes like this from reccurring."

Ends

Page 18 of 253