All Saints Church
Elton Church of England Primary School is situated on a site adjacent to the Parish Church of All Saints in the beautiful village of Elton. It is one of the oldest Church of England Schools in the Diocese of Ely, being founded under the Wills of Jane and Frances Proby dated 1711 “to provide for the children of the parish of Elton to be taught to read, write, cast accounts and the Catechism of the Church of England”.
Under the School’s Trust Deed the foundation governors are the Parish Priest of Elton and representatives of the Parish Church and Diocese of Ely. The school has always been linked with the Parish Church and this link is still greatly valued and maintained. The school became a primary school after the re-organisation of secondary education in 1962.
Our links with All Saints are strong and living. We have access to the physical church building throughout the school day and use its beauty and silence to inspire and invoke feelings of awe and wonder in many of our lessons. Not only do we use it for the more obvious areas of the curriculum (RE, art and music for example) but we try to use the church building and grounds as a resource whenever we can to strengthen the relationship the children have it. So in maths, we might do a shape hunt for example, or estimate how many bottoms we can fit on pews! We might use the churchyard as a source of historical evidence for studying the World Wars, or as a focus on plants for our science work, or use the building itself with its arches and bell-tower as a focus for Design and Technology.
At least every term, we do a special service in the church to strengthen the children's understanding of the liturgical calendar; Harvest festival, Christingle, Christmas Nativity and Carols, Easter, Rogation and a Leaver's service usually take place and are a very special time for all our school community to get together and celebrate and give thanks. The children always take the lead in these services and produce much of the written material, drama and artwork themselves.
In addition to the physical building of the church, we also have strong links through the involvement of the church ministers. Currently we have Reverend Richard Gibbs as our vicar, and he leads Collective Worship in the school every two weeks. We are also fortunate to have Reverend Alexandra Podd who supports us in her capacity as a curate in a neighbouring benefice (where many of our children and families are from). Further support from the Church is given by Church Wardens who come to lead Collective Worship with us and take part in our Church Services.