13th August 2021
Put on your own oxygen mask before you try to help others, even if we haven’t flown anywhere on holiday this year we are familiar with this instruction on a plane. This also applies in schools, the school staff need to be cared for and supported if they are to have the capacity to support their pupils. This academic year will be challenging, no one really knows what will be required of schools and the impact of lost time in school for the majority of pupils will be felt for a while. A prayer space for staff is one way to support them.
In September 2020, two of our networkers, Jane Whittington and Rebecca Richardson created a set of prayer space resources for schools to use with the staff on the inset day at the start of the autumn term. They received positive feedback on the impact of these reflective opportunities on the staff’s wellbeing as they started the new academic year last year. In one of the schools, an educational psychologist was delivering inset day training and staff were arriving at his session so enthusiastic about what they had done in the prayer space that he had to go and see what was going on for himself. The staff have continued to wear their ‘God is with me’ safety pins all year. The celebration bunting has remained up in the staff room and has been a talking point when church members visit.
These resources have been tweaked for this September and some simply offer the opportunity to slow down and think while other activities invite staff to pray. These activities can be adapted to suit the context of your local school.
In addition to this set of reflective activities this team has also produced fortnightly reflective videos with prayer activities for school staff, they are posted on Twitter by @ChrisCrazySci
This staff inset day resource can be downloaded here.