Gwenfo Church in Wales Primary School
Religious Education – Policy Statement
Gwenfo Church in Wales (controlled) Primary School is a small village school in a country area on the outskirts of Cardiff in the Vale of Glamorgan.
There are a small number of families from faith communities other than Christianity.
The Nature of Religious Education
RE is an educational activity and is not designed to urge religious belief on pupils. It comprises of a study of religion and opportunities for children to explore and express their own feelings and beliefs. Religious Education also makes a major contribution to children’s spiritual, emotional, moral, cultural, mental and physical development.
Aims in Religious Education
The aims of religious education at Gwenfo School are:
a. To develop the children’s knowledge and understanding of the beliefs and
practices of Christianity with Judaism, Islam and the religion of any other faith
represented within our school community.
b. To help children appreciate the influence that religious belief and practice has on
c. To encourage in the children a respect for, and sensitivity to, those who hold
different beliefs from their own.
d. To help children explore and reflect upon their own life and religious experiences
(e.g. celebrating special times) and those of others.
e. To give children opportunities to develop and express their feelings and beliefs.
The teaching of Religious Education is based on the Church in Wales Primary School Syllabus. At Gwenfo School, the children will be taught mainly about Christianity, Judaism and Islam.
The Foundation Phase will study Christianity, Judaism and aspects of cultural diversity.
Key Stage 2 will study Christianity, Judaism and Islam.
At both Key Stages aspects of other religions will be introduced where appropriate.
The whole syllabus ensures progression and development from Foundation Phase through to Key stage 2.
Learners should be given the opportunity to engage in fundamental questions, explore religious beliefs, teachings and practices and express their personal responses through the six strands of study: Bible, Jesus, Church, Festivals, Christian Life and Values and Other faiths
Approaches to the teaching of RE
In order to make religious education a lively, active subject we employ a variety of teaching methods including art, ICT, music, discussion, the development of thinking skills, drama, the use of artefacts, pictures, stories, and the use of periods of stillness and reflection. Topics and thematic approaches with other subjects in the curriculum are encouraged.
Where possible we want our pupils to have opportunities to encounter local faith communities through visits to local places of worship or visits from members of local faith communities. Resources can also be borrowed from the Church in Wales resources department.
The school has links with St Mary’s Church, Wenvoe. The Priest visits the school on a regular basis to lead Collective Worship and to preside over the Eucharist services. On occasions, the children visit the church and take part in special services. When appropriate, visitors from other faiths are invited into the school to contribute to RE topics.
Special needs/equal opportunity
The content of RE in the school will be appropriate for all children irrespective of their religious and cultural background. They will be encouraged to show sensitivity and respect for different views and beliefs.
All pupils in mainstream schools must be taught religious education unless their parents have requested their withdrawal from RE lessons.
Teachers will be sensitive to, and aware of, the distinctive needs of individual students.
For learners working below the expected level, teachers should adapt their teaching style and differentiate accordingly. For more able and talented learners working at higher levels, teachers should use materials in ways that extend breadth and depth of study and provide the opportunities for independent learning.
Assessment and monitoring of RE
This is in accordance with the school policy on assessment. It is expected that each teacher will be responsible for the regular assessment of his or her pupils through marking work set and to use this to inform future short term planning. The teacher will also ensure that learners understand, are involved in and share in the responsibility for assessment of their learning. i.e. to know what their next steps are in learning.
The Role of the Co-ordinator
The role of the coordinator will include the following:
- Develop a whole school Scheme of Work to ensure continuity and progression in teaching and learning at KS1 and KS2.
- Enhance and extend the awareness of teachers by attending courses and leading staff inset meetings.
- To monitor the ‘range’ and skills taught in Religious Education.
- Improve the level of resources for Religious Education.
- Support and advise staff as required.
- To oversee a portfolio of levelled work
This is carried out by discussion with members of staff with regard to the effectiveness of the content and suitability of resources.