As mentioned in the last blog post, our work on the Catholic pupil profile has now started in earnest. This focuses on characteristics, or ‘virtues’, that we aim to foster within the pupils that we serve.
This work is an extension upon our work on Gospel values. The Gospel values themselves represent the guiding principles by which we strive to live, and as a school we ensure an understanding of these by providing all pupils with the beautiful passage of scripture known as ‘The Beatitudes’, from the Gospel of Matthew,along with an explanation of the values that we draw from this passage.
The eight beatitudes feature in different ways in and around the school, in each pupil’s book and centrally within the Main Hall’s ‘Beatitudes Gallery’. The treatment of each of the eight beatitudes with different artistic styles really demonstrates very powerfully the imagination and creativity of our pupils, with Lichtenstein-inspired pop art, abstract and traditional depictions of each of the promises or statements made in Christ’s ‘Sermon on the Mount’:
Blessed are the poor inspirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek ,for they will inherit the land.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
From this gospel, we draw the gospel values of faith, sacrifice and service, courage,truth and justice, peace, hope, love, community, tolerance and reconciliation. Striving to exhibit these values in our daily lives we can develop the ‘virtues’ of living out the values in all that we do.
The Catholic pupil profile is an approach taken by many Catholic schools to celebrating and encouraging these virtues, or character traits. Essentially,the virtues are the ‘habits’ or characteristics that are evident when the values are embedded in day-to-day practice. The virtues are generally represented in pairs and are often depicted in the following diagram:
We aim, then, that our pupils will lead more fulfilling lives by being:
Grateful for their own gifts,for the gift of other people, and for the blessings of each day; and generous with their gifts, becoming men and women for others.
Attentive to their experience and to their vocation; and discerning about the choices they make and the effects of those choices.
Compassionate towards others, near and far, especially the less fortunate; and loving by their just actions and forgiving words.
Faith-filled in their beliefs and hopeful for the future.
Eloquent and truthful in what they say of themselves, the relations between people, and the world.
Learned, finding God in all things; and wise in the ways they use their learning for the common good.
Curious about everything; and active in their engagement with the world, changing what they can for the better.
Intentional in the way they live and use the resources of the earth, guided by conscience; and prophetic in the example they set to others.
Throughout the school year, we will be looking at each of these pairs in more detail. We are currently focusing on the paired virtues of being‘faith-filled and hopeful’ as, with faith and hope in this first term of the academic year, all sorts of exciting possibilities lie ahead!
With best wishes for the fortnight ahead to all pupils and their families.