Overcoming the primary to secondary divide

Published: January 21, 2020

Girl in the transition between primary and secondary schoolsCONNECT: Joined-Up Thinking

Have you ever wondered why many young people gradually engage less with the church as they go through their teenage years? In this diocese, we have 116 Church of England schools and academies, but just one secondary sponsored Anglican Academy.

Barrie Voyce, who leads the Youth strand of the LIFE vision, is joining with diocesan Children and Families Officer, Jo Wetherall, to bring together expertise in both primary and secondary schools’ ministry for a unique day conference on 29 February.

Barrie said, “Across the Diocese large numbers of clergy, lay people, volunteers, children, families and youth workers are connecting with children and young people every week. In many ways, the vision and mission to primary and secondary school-age children are the same – to take the love and grace of Jesus into the lives of those who might never come close to one of our churches.

“In other ways, there are some clear distinctions. While ministry is usually welcomed in primary schools, those called to ministry to over 11s often struggle to make secondary school connections. The day is about joining up our thinking to overcome the divide.”

“The day includes talks from those who work with children and young people in school. You can experience the programmes and activities they run, and the culture they create. You will be challenged to consider what life is like ‘on the other side’ of the school divide – and recognise how as churches we are well-positioned to connect with children, young people, and their families, whatever age they are or the school they attend.”

Workshops will include Prayer Spaces in Schools, collective worship, chaplaincy, transition, sports ministry, and running lunch or afterschool clubs.

For more information and a full event programme visit www.gloucester.anglican.org/event/connect-day-conference-joined-up-thinking/

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