St John's School was opened in 1856 and was charged with educating the children of Sparkhill. We hold to that principle today- our curriculum is designed to roundly educate children- not just train them to pass tests. This takes courage in the era of league tables, and it would be untrue to say that we do not push children academically- we do. But we want children to be widely educated: in the Arts, in critical thinking, in Citizenship, in mental health, and this means balancing our timetable to include these things too.
We are a Church School and we intend for all our children to experience an education that has values at its heart. Love for our neighbour, is at the heart of all that we do. We encourage every child to grow academically, socially, emotionally and spiritually. Our twelve values are the glue that cement the different strands of our school-life together.
We enable children to grow in, and reflect on, their own faith -no matter what that may be- and to respect the beliefs, opinions and lifestyles of others. We want them to grow into people with strong values that will enable them to make their communities better places in which to live and work. Our intention is for children to see the implications of living a life with values such as compassion and forgiveness, and the outcomes when people turn their backs on values such as justice and friendship. We hope for our children to leave St John’s as people with integrity, who value others and have a keen sense of right and wrong.
We intend for them to develop as good citizens: to appreciate equality, to develop a secure personal identity and to know that they belong and are valuable to society, just as those that are different to them are equally important. We mean for them to understand how they can make a positive difference in their community, to understand democracy and how to engage in it, and to appreciate the value of respect for all people.
We want children to leave our school excited about education; full of questions, a desire to find out more, and the skills to do so. We intend to develop children’s skills in critical thinking and problem-solving; for them to leave us able to question what they see and hear, and to challenge prejudice and bias. We intend for them to be independent, confident individuals, with resilience to deal with life’s ups and downs.
We intend for them to leave as physically and mentally healthy young people, having developed good habits in early life. We want our children to leave with high self-esteem and high aspirations; with the knowledge, skills and understanding to succeed in the next part of their school journey.