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Enhanced Chaplaincy

Chaplaincy: “the oddly-dressed stranger parachuted into a school for the hit-and-run ritual of a god-slot tucked between a raft of notices and a bawling-out, listened to by no-one and connected to nothing”

However,  we can and must be so much more. So how do you see yourself? Fulfilling an anachronistic role, or sharing faith in Christ in the school world?

A chaplain may be the one person every under-18 in an area sees both in the corridors and classrooms of their school and in the streets and homes of their community. Uniquely, the chaplain may also be the only individual who transitions with them from primary to secondary school. What a strategic place to be in!

Dream a little: what could you build from this position?

Calderside Learning Community Chaplaincy Team grasped the significance of their role and turned it into strength. The school was formed in a new-build campus from the merger of two secondary schools and two specialist provisions (an ASN unit and a Deaf Education unit), with 8 associated primaries in its cluster. Between those 8 primaries were five chaplains who combined to offer as the Chaplaincy Team for Calderside, a motley multi-denominational crew who found combining their talents and gifts made the whole so much greater than the sum of the parts.

By thinking strategically they now partner their schools with their churches to deliver major Religious Observance events for every P6 (our “Bubblegum ‘n’ Fluff” Christmas programme), every P7 (our “Easter Code” production), a weekly ‘Cosy Cafe’ within the school, a fortnightly Sunday evening ‘Cosy Cafe’ in a church building, regular dedicated assemblies co-ordinated and planned with staff for every year group across each school. There is also input into lessons with every S1 pupil, linked to ‘Rights Respecting Schools and a project for every S2 bringing together both the non-denominational and the Catholic Secondary Schools for a ‘Lifepath’ event  focused on the life of David Livingstone.

Was this easy to create? No.

Isn’t it hard work and time-consuming? Yes.

Is it worth it? Oh yes!