“Jesus teaches us another way: Go out. Go out and share your testimony, go out and interact with your brothers, go out and share, go out and ask. Become the Word, in body as well as Spirit."
(Pope Francis, June 2013)
St Dominic Savio is a Catholic school which aims to support its pupils in learning about the life and mission of Jesus in a loving, caring and supportive environment that reflects the gospel values. Through focused RE lessons, children learn about the life and work of Jesus; the traditions of the church; the importance of the sacraments and develop their understanding of the Mass. They also learn about other world faiths and the need to respect the beliefs and traditions of others.
Religious Education is a core subject and underpins the Christian values which define our St Dominic Savio community. RE is taught as an academic subject and is delivered for two hours a week in Key Stage 1 and two and a half hours in Key Stage 2. We follow the 'God Matters' scheme of work which is set by the Catholic Diocese of Portsmouth.
At St Dominic Savio we recognise that children should not just learn about the Gospel values but live them. We believe it is our duty to create an environment that is reflective of this; where children feel respected, loved and cared for in every aspect of their education and able to reach their full potential, not just academically but emotionally, socially and personally.
Prayer is an important part of our daily routine. Children come together for liturgies and assemblies. The children also participate in hymn practice singing the Word of the Lord. During Lent, we pray the Stations of the Cross. In May and October we recite the Rosary, whilst during Advent, collective worship is themed alongside the Jesse Tree. The children attend Parish Mass throughout the year.
Children come to St Dominic Savio at different stages in their faith journey. Family situations vary as do children’s spiritual experiences outside school. Some may already be engaged while others may be hearing the gospel teachings for the first time. In RE lessons we aim to guide all children in:
From an early age children become familiar with Old Testament scripture and the Gospel teachings of the New Testament. As they move up through the school, they are encouraged to question and relate these teachings to their own lives. They learn that Jesus is with us today and that His messages are as relevant today as ever.
The Christian principles of love and forgiveness which emerge from our RE lessons, permeate the whole curriculum and life at St Dominic Savio. Children understand that everyone has been created in the image of Christ and that everyone is equal.
To put our faith into practice, children become involved in various charity events throughout the year which raise money for communities in need, locally, nationally and globally. We have close links with CAFOD which is involved in overseas development and our Fairtrade work supports Christ’s teachings relating to justice and equality.
While it is our primary intention to show children how to develop their own spirituality and their relationship with God, we also explore the teachings and philosophies of other world faiths. Children understand the need for tolerance in all aspects of life and we always seek to find similarities rather than differences.
At St Dominic Savio, children enjoy their RE lessons which have a knowledge centred approach. Our priests lead RE lessons for each year group throughout the year. Parents are invited to celebrate our Masses at St John Bosco Church through the year.
Children leave St Dominic Savio confident in their understanding of their faith and comfortable in their understanding of other faiths. They know that Christ taught them to treat everyone with respect and to speak up for justice.