Annual Service for Headteachers and Governors

A service of celebration was held at Dorchester Abbey on Thursday 18 November for headteachers and governors of Church of England schools in the Diocese of Oxford.

Headteachers and governors were joined by some special guests at the service, the Children of St Birinus’ CE Primary School Choir who performed throughout the service and secondary aged pupils from the Marlborough CE School, Woodstock. Pupils from Marlborough CE School shared their own reflections on the pandemic and how it has impacted them through powerful poetry and spoken word.

The Bishop of Dorchester, the Rt Revd Gavin Collins, led the eucharist service highlighting the tireless work of all teaching staff in the diocese throughout the pandemic and the great lengths headteachers and governors have gone to, to ensure that children can continue to learn despite all the disruptions of the past couple of years.

Bishop Gavin gave an Address on Matthew 11 and Psalm 25 highlighting the words of Jesus offering the invitation and promise for each person to “come to him” and “receive his rest”.

“When I talk with teachers and school leaders and realise just how drained you have been by the unprecedented and relentless challenges of the last 18 months, then this is an invitation that is clearly desperately needed.”

The newer headteachers, who have joined schools in the diocese in the past year, were welcomed and each presented with a Bible by the Diocesan Director of Education, Tony Wilson and Bishop Gavin.

The Oxford Diocesan Board of Education supports over 300 schools and academies throughout the Diocese of Oxford.  Schools are supported in a growing number of Multi Academy Trusts (MATs), as standalone academies and as other schools.

The ODBE is committed to the education of the whole person to their fullest potential, to the development of moral and spiritual understanding, to the uniqueness of the individual and to the education of all within the maintained system. The ODBE works within statutory education on behalf of the Diocese of Oxford in developing a Christian vision of education, fulfilling this commitment to all schools through the provision of a comprehensive range of advice and support.