We are often asked how churches can contribute to the spiritual life of their local school beyond an annual prayer and reflection space. Here are a few ideas of how things could be taken forward after a prayer and reflection space in a school. Not all of these ideas will be suitable in some contexts so be sensitive to the context you are working in and the relationship you have with a school before offering programmes or ideas.
- Ask the school what their current needs are– perhaps they are looking for people to hear children read, need help with an after school club or just need help at events to serve tea/ coffee etc. Never underestimate the impact of being a reliable presence in a school and willing to serve where the greatest needs are.
- Contribute to a permanent prayer and reflection space and be available to support students using the space/ regularly change the activities in the space. You could also help to contribute to classroom prayer and reflection corners where appropriate and suggest activities and ways to change and develop these.
- Lead assemblies in the school and offer other initiatives (e.g. “Open the book”) if appropriate in your context.
- Commit to running a regular prayer and reflection club perhaps one lunchtime a week or providing a chaplaincy service.
- Consider becoming a school governor if there is a current need.
- Consider developing a community prayer and reflection space for your local area during a key season (e.g. Christmas, Easter etc.) Often these spaces work well following prayer and reflection spaces in schools as the students and their families are familiar and comfortable with using and engaging with such spaces. Check out our community page or contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org for more info on developing a community prayer and reflection space.
- Pray for your school regularly as a church and ask the school how you can be praying for them. You could consider setting up a pray for schools group. See https://www.prayforschools.org/ for more details.