Headteachers from across the Diocese of East Anglia met at the Conference Centre at the White House in Poringland recently for the Autumn Conference hosted by the Diocesan Schools Service.
The day, on Friday 3rd November, provided the first opportunity for Bishop Peter Collins to meet with all the headteachers from his schools. After opening the conference with prayer, Bishop Peter led the first session focusing on the importance of clarity and confidence in the mission and identity of our Catholic schools. Bishop Peter thanked headteachers for all that they do and all that they give to their school communities and took an interesting range of questions from the floor.
The conference continued with presentations and discussion on the theme of racial justice, facilitated by two guest speakers, Lorraine Prince, Head of Networks at the Church of England and Allana Gay, a headteacher in north London and founder member of BAMEEd an organisation promoting racial justice in schools.
Director of Schools’ Service, Andy Stone, said: “Starting with the theological underpinnings of racial justice and acknowledging the great diversity to be found in our Catholic schools across East Anglia, the day provided a stimulating opportunity to reflect on how we ensure our communities are inclusive and how we celebrate the diversity that helps to make our schools such special places.
“Our diocese is wide in geography and we are only able to gather everyone together on a relatively few occasions each year, so the opportunity for fellowship and networking was very welcome. We were grateful too that Bishop Peter was able to celebrate Mass with us before we all enjoyed a lunch together.
“It was a stimulating day, with a busy programme and some excellent and thought-provoking discussion. Catholic schools are at the forefront in seeking to be places of welcome for all and we look forward to building on the many strengths our schools already enjoy.”