Schools expert Tony appointed as our new Director of Education


An experienced headteacher who has worked both nationally and internationally successfully turning around several schools has been appointed as the new Diocesan Director of Education.

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Even more Church schools celebrate ‘Outstanding’ success


ANOTHER 28 of our Church schools have been awarded special plaques to celebrate being classified as Outstanding by SIAMS. Read more

Caring for our Church schools


AS she enjoys her last few months as Diocesan Director of Education, Fiona Craig tells Jo Duckles about the exciting challenges and opportunities that will face her successor. Read more

Farewell to governor Graham after 21 years’ service


For Graham Anderson, this week marks the end of 21 years service as a governor at Winslow Church of England School in Buckinghamshire.  Read more

Budding legal eagles from Berkshire become national champions

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YOUNGSTERS from a Church school in Berkshire have been named as the national champions in this year’s Mock Trial Competition.

On your marks.. Church school children get a taste of triathlon


IT was an exciting morning for children from Standlake CE Primary School children when they got to take part in

Second school governor conference at the River and Rowing Museum


THE second annual diocesan School Governor’s Conference takes place at the Henley River and Rowing Museum next month.

Speakers will include Sarah Hubbard from HMI, Jane Martin, psychologist and Mark A’ Bear from NLG. The evening will also see governors who have completed the two-year Excellence in Governance programme presented with plaques.

The conference takes place on Tuesday 10 July, 6.30-9.30pm. To book email or call 01865 208272.

Amazing opportunity to step back in time to Newton’s Olney


MORE than 1,000 school pupils from Milton Keynes, Olney and Bedford happily abandoned their classrooms for a fun-filled day in Olney. Read more

Equipping children through music and song


ANDY SILVER describes a project that combines music and dancing with invaluable education to help build up confidence and spiritual and moral education for primary school children. Read more

Strictly Come Haddenham


STAFF, children and professional dance celebrity Brendan Cole strutted their stuff at an energetic celebration of 150 years of Haddenham St Mary’s CE Primary School.

At the same event, last month, a new wing of the school, complete with four new classrooms was opened. Karen Collett, the headteacher, said: “We had a wonderful time. We had lots of guests. We invited everyone involved in the build, former staff and dignitaries.”

Karen Collett and Brendan Cole cut the cake at the 150th celebration at St Mary’s.

Brendan Cole at St Mary’s, Haddenham

A former headteacher cuts the ribbon to open the new classrooms

Parents, dignitaries and celebrity Brendan Cole at the celebration

Brendan, known for his role on the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing, said: “I’m local to the area. We’ve had a lovely day with a bit of dancing and the atmosphere among the teachers and pupils is nice to see.”

Prime Minister’s Questions with a difference


PRIME Minister, Theresa May, visited St Luke’s CE School in Maidenhead recently as part of a school project on inspirational people. Read more

Religious community provides young teachers purpose-built flats


THE Community of St Mary the Virgin (CSMV) in Wantage has just opened six new one-bedroom flats, designed to encourage newly qualified teachers to take up posts in Oxfordshire.

St Mary’s Lodge, a large late 19th century house on the St Mary’s Convent site has been converted into six self-contained flats. They will be let at affordable rents to newly qualified teachers taking up a post in the area.

“The cost of accommodation in Oxfordshire is very high,” says Alastair Hunter, the chair of CSMV’s Trustees, who have funded the conversion. “The Community of St Mary the Virgin has a long and very active association with education and teaching. The Sisters wanted to offer accommodation to the next generation of teachers, attracting the brightest and best to serve the schools and communities of Wantage and the surrounding area.”

Kathryn Walker, a maths and PE teacher at King Alfred’s Academy is the first person to move in. “St Mary’s Lodge is the perfect place to live starting out in my professional career. My apartment is spacious, modern and equipped with high-quality fixtures and fittings. It has beautiful views of the Ridgeway, is conveniently located and I love living here.” 

The Oxford Diocesan Schools Trust (ODST) and the Vale Academy Trust, two local Multi Academy Trusts, are using space at St Mary’s Convent for meetings and as a base for some of their central functions. David Locke, Chief Operating Officer at ODST commented, “We are delighted with the generous support of CSMV and the Sisters in progressing this important new venture. Many teachers at schools in Oxfordshire are finding accommodation costs excessive. We believe that these new flats are a positive and innovative step forward.”

“Teaching undergraduates in their final weeks at university and colleges are already applying for their first professional posts,” says Sister Stella, the Sister in Charge of CSMV. “We hope that when the autumn term starts in September the six flats in St Mary’s Lodge will all be taken and that local schools and the children and families they serve will benefit from this new legacy.”