Our hope, for all in our family of church schools, is that Religious Education is a valued academic subject providing opportunities for pupils to confidently explore and discover what people of all faiths and worldviews believe and what difference this makes to the way they live. RE should also ensure pupils flourish as they gain the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to handle questions raised by religion and belief and reflect on their own ideas and ways of living.
The syllabus for Religious Education is determined locally by SACREs (Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education). For details of the Gloucestershire Agreed Syllabus please contact Debbie Helme details for the South Gloucestershire Agreed Syllabus can be found here. In addition, all schools will be able to use the resource Understanding Christianity.
Religious Education plays a vital role in church schools, the expectations and standards required for the subject are clarified in the Church of England’s
This is inspected under SIAMS Schedule 2018 (page 15)
There are many ways the education team at the Diocese aim to support schools with these high expectations and aspirations. We train and resource RE Hub Leaders, facilitating them to lead local RE hubs in each deanery area three times a year. We offer a range of bespoke and central training for RE. We also provide a range of published resources through our publishing arm, Jumping Fish. Please read the Diocesan Education Newsletter – DEN for regular RE updates.
If you have any specific questions around RE provision, please contact Debbie Helme, our Strategic Lead for RE and School Christian Character.
These documents are intended as support and information for RE subject leaders.
South Gloucestershire schools can access examples of long term planning by contacting Debbie Helme
Additional units to support sections of the Gloucestershire syllabus for RE
When the Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education in Gloucestershire was published in 2017, teachers found that many of the units on Christianity were strongly supported by the Understanding Christianity resource. Many teachers felt they would therefore appreciate more support with teaching some of the units on other world faiths or the more systematic units. In response to this request, the Gloucestershire SACRE have commissioned a number of supporting resources. To access these please contact Stephen Pett at RE Today.
Local RE Hubs meet three times a year throughout Gloucestershire and South Glos. Each meeting is led by an RE Hub Leader who will follow an agenda but also allow opportunity for discussion. These free, after-school meetings are informal, offer teachers the chance to talk about how RE is going in their schools and provide a space to share practical advice and tips. They are intended to support both those passionate about the subject and those finding it a bit of a struggle. To find out more and to book onto the sessions, please contact the RE Hub Leaders.
The Education Department at the Diocese of Gloucester is looking to recruit new RE Hub Leaders. This is an exciting opportunity for anyone who is passionate about teaching and leading RE and would like to develop their skills and support other RE teachers and subject leaders. It also provides CPD for teachers considering moving on to senior leadership roles.
For further details and information about how to apply, please see here: new RE Hub Leaders
RE Hub Leader contact details:
- Cheltenham Deanery Hub, Tanya Harris
- Cirencester Deanery Hub, Claire McLaughlin
- Gloucester & Stroud Deaneries Hub, Rachel Millard
- North Cotswold Deanery Hub, Karen Harding
- Severn Vale Deanery Hub, Adam Stanton
- Wotton Deanery Hub, Jane Blaken
- Wotton South Deanery RE Hub – for further details contact Debbie Helme
- Forest Deanery Hub – for further details contact Debbie Helme
RE Hub Meeting dates
In 2022/23 after-school RE hubs are meeting in deaneries around the Diocese in the autumn, spring and summer terms.
Hubs held during week commencing Monday 14 November 2022
Hubs held during week commencing : Monday 20 March 2023
Hubs held during week commencing : Monday 19 June 2023
The Experience Journey Resources are designed to help schools and churches work collaboratively to support pupils explore and discover the importance of festivals for Christians. The popular Experience Easter and Experience Christmas resources have now been augmented with new titles, such as Experience Advent (September 2021) and Experience Lent (December 2021). Experience After Easter is coming early in 2022. Further details are available here.
RE & Early Years Foundation Stage
A selection of ideas to support teaching the Gloucester Agreed Syllabus to children in the early years using persona dolls can be found here.
There is various training support available for RE:
Bespoke In-School RE MOTs
RE MOTs are an exploration and discussion of RE within the school and include discussion, identifying gaps and suggesting ideas for improvement. It will ask the questions:
- How effective the school is in ensuring pupils flourish through the provision of high quality religious education reflecting the Church of England Statement of Entitlement.
- How effective the school is in ensuring that religious education expresses the school’s Christian vision.
To request this training please enter the details in the attached request form. A member of the team will be in touch with you within 10 working days after receipt of the form.
Understanding Christianity Refresher
This training sessions offers an opportunity for teachers new to the RE Gloucestershire Syllabus to get to grips with it and its relationship to Understanding Christianity as well as a chance for experienced teachers to be refreshed in how to maximise the Understanding Christianity resource. The session will include ideas for how to make the most of the icons and big frieze in lessons, how to handle individual Understanding Christianity units and it will unpack some of the other gems from the handbook often missed by busy teachers! Face to face training is recommended so teachers can interact with and handle the resources.
For RE Subject Leaders, class teachers, Early Career Teachers, NQT+1
Thursday 30 March 2023 at 1.30pm– 4.00pm
Venue: Jerusalem Room, 4 College Green, Gloucester, GL1 2LR
Cost: £75.00 per delegate
Booking deadline: Thursday 16 March 2023
The education team work hard with partner organisations to provide a range of supporting opportunities and initiatives for RE. These include running an annual RE & Art competition and liaising with the Cathedral Education Department and members of other faith communities to support school trips, visits and visitors. See below for specific details.
RE and Art Competition 2021 – 2022
Glimpses of Belief
Following from the success of previous years, this year’s RE & Art competition, ‘Glimpses of Belief’ also had a large number of entries. This is an exciting opportunity for pupils to link insights in RE with art to produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences or the experiences of others. The winners and runners up have been announced and the collection of this exciting work will be on the website soon.
This is a competition run by SACRE – further details to follow
Joint Cathedral and Mosque / Synagogue Visits
The Cathedral Education Centre organises joint visit days for school groups wanting to visit more than one place of worship on the same day. They will provide dates and a full itinerary for joint visits to the Cathedral and the Masjid E-Noor (Mosque) on Ryecroft Street, Gloucester or alternatively with the Cathedral and the Synagogue in Cheltenham. Due to their popularity there is now limited availability for these days, so book as early as possible to avoid disappointment. For further information:
RE Opportunities at Viney Hill
Viney Hill is a Christian Adventure Centre and they have worked in collaboration with the education team to create special activity trails which link to RE units as well as the popular ‘Experience Christmas Adventure’ trail which included using tunnelling to consider the concept of incarnation and using bush craft and low ropes to make sense of the text in the Christmas story. To find out more, book dates or discover what they can offer for bespoke RE Curriculum days, please contact Viney Hill Adventures.