The BWI Archives

1952 ~ Diocesan Inspection Report


Bishop Winnington-Ingram CE School
Transcript of London Diocesan Board of Education Inspection Reports

Visit of Tuesday, 2nd December 1952 by 
The Rev. Preb. F.A.F. Poulden and The Rev. F.G.W.W. Heydon


This is a Primary school of 356 children, divided into eight classes, three of these being Infants’ Classes and the other five being Junior Mixed.  There is a daily Assembly held in the School Hall and conducted by the Head Teacher, or, as on the day of our visit, by one of the Parochial Clergy. On this occasion, the Vicar, who had welcomed us to the School, presided.  This worship was quiet and sincere and all present took part in the prayers and hymn singing.  The children sang ‘Brother James’ Air’ at the opening of the worship.  The Infants’ Classes have Class Prayers, carefully supervised by the Class Teachers, except on two mornings of the week when there is an Infants’ Assembly.  We would recommend that Class Prayers should, as far as possible, take the form of a Full Assembly in miniature, with plenty of variety of simple material from day to day.  

The instruction has been based upon the syllabus drawn up seven or eight years ago by the local Clergy.  The Vicar who has just left was engaged upon a new plan of instruction based on the Diocesan Syllabus of Church Teaching and Prayer Book Instruction, and taking for its biblical background teaching the Middlesex County Council Syllabus of Religious Instruction.  We have recommended this course for some years past and are still of the opinion that it is the best plan to adopt, making sure that the doctrinal teaching is really adopted as the basis of the whole instruction.  A list of prescribed Scripture stories for each class over a set period will not, in our opinion, meet the full need.  The Clergy teach in this school faithfully and regularly.  This is a great asset to the work and the class teachers are taking pains to integrate their own work with that of the priests.  Instruction in worship is also given, from time to time, by the Clergy in the Parish Church.

The response of the children in their classes was most promising.  The Infants were happy doing the many simple tasks which have arisen from the oral lessons.  Modern methods of presentation have been used and the visual-aids are in plentiful supply.  Much care has been expended in keeping the presentation of the stories fresh and attractive.  The children, in consequence, have a sharp impression of the stories and of the simple teaching which they are intended to convey.  The presentation has been fully amplified by the various kinds of expression work which are in regular use in these classes.  In general, there is a sound foundation being laid in this part of the school.  The work of the Junior School is making progress and we should like to put on record, in the first place, that, by the time the children reach the top of the school, they display considerable knowledge of the set work and a growing awareness of its religious purpose.  At the same time, there is a tendency in some classes to treat the set stories as ‘ends in themselves’.  This, together with the temptation to treat the Old Testament stories in isolation from the New Testament, should be resisted.  The children will not appreciate the full value of the instruction unless it is carefully integrated and simply directed towards a doctrinal end which the child mind can comprehend.  As we have already indicated, the children in the top classes are making rapid progress in relating the teaching to life with regard to worship and to right behaviour.  Some of the classes have had their work disrupted by illness amongst the staff and this almost certainly accounts for some of the lack of integration. The general tone and atmosphere of the school are happy and stimulating and there is no doubt that there is a dominating desire to serve the Church well and to prepare these children for Confirmation and full membership of the Church before they take their places in their Secondary Schools.

Frank Poulden
Diocesan Inspector

London Metropolitan Archive, Acc/1035/08/19
Reproduced with permission from the LDBS



First uploaded: 11 May 2017