School Philosophy & Principles
Our Mantra: "Consistently Outstanding"
Our expectations and standards are high; we seek to be outstanding in all that we do and demand excellence from all our learners. Success is recognised and celebrated in all aspects of school life and we are very proud of our academic achievements, extensive extra-curricular provision and our major sporting achievements. We expect all our young people to work hard and create a positive learning environment for others. Our staff is expected to adhere to school policies and strive to be consistently outstanding in all aspects of their professional roles at Our Lady's. We are fully committed to all aspects of the Single Equality Policy, the safeguarding of learners and staff and promoting community cohesion.
Great value is placed on parental partnerships and we have been re-designated in 2011 with the Leading Parent Partnership Award in recognition of our outstanding relationships with the community to which we serve. Also we have achieved the prestigious Investors in People Gold Award, the Inclusion Quality Mark, and Centre for Excellence for Inclusion, the Specialism Quality Mark, the Cultural Diversity Quality Standard, the Quality in Study Support Award, received commendation from the DfE and Specialist Schools and Academies Trust, placing us in the top 100 schools for continuous improvement. Over the past 5 years outcomes have continuously improved. We believe that it is crucial to work together to ensure that our children receive the best possible education and are prepared for their future life. This is done in a positive, friendly atmosphere which is based on mutual respect. Parents can expect excellent information, advice and guidance through: progress and written reports, Induction Day, Parents' Evenings, Information Evenings and you are always welcome to make an appointment to come into school to meet Learning Managers, Form Tutors and Teaching Staff. Parents may contact the leadership team at any point to discuss any worries or make suggestions on how to continue to improve our school.
Our school is a Catholic school with an Engineering specialism situated in Skelmersdale, Lancashire. We have outstanding links with local primary schools. We are proud to be a strong faith community and welcome children from other Christian and religious backgrounds.
To live by our Mission Statement "In Christ We Grow" is at the heart of all that we do. It is our mission to make Christ known to evey child and foster genuine love in each of them. We recognise that it is of fundamental importance that Christian principles are at the centre of every aspect of school life. Our staff works on the understanding that Catholic education is a journey that never ends and we strive to help our community to make the connection between faith, learning and life. We work on the principle that it is not what we educate but how we educate that is important and that children will only learn through the smiling eyes of the staff charged with their formation. The school strives to be a positive influence in the life of the local Church by enabling the learners to experience a living tradition of faith and by maintaining the highest ideals within the curriculum. We recognise the social diversity and need to work for cohesion in our society.
The moral, spiritual, social and cultural development of all learners permeates the curriculum. We aim to maintain a just and caring school community in which all learners, teachers and members of the associate staff are given personal recognition and a sense of security, respect and dignity. We believe that it is only in such an environment that learners can recognise and appreciate achievement in its various forms including high academic standards and good examination results. All learners are encouraged to fulfil their full potential, personal ambitions and aspirations within a safe and caring environment. We believe in the philosophy that it is not what we learn but how we learn which fully develops children.
Our Engineering Status reflects our commitment to supporting the local community. The development of the work force for the future through the extension of problem solving, team work and creative thinking is important. "Engineering The Future" is the theme for our college status. We achieved the Specialism Quality Mark and leading and transforming level in 2013.
Every effort is made to cater for the individual needs of learners. The recognition of the continuity and progression of education means that Our Lady's works closely with our partner primary schools and with the post-16 institutions especially St. John Rigby 6th Form College. We are the first school to have been given the Inclusion Quality Mark and Centre of Excellence at the same time. It is testament to our mission to be fully inclusive, break down barriers to learning and allow everyone to flourish, regardless of their starting point. Our 75 minute lessons allow for full differentiation to ensure no-one is left struggling or in need of further materials to stretch and challenge the mind.
Great emphasis is placed upon the need for learners to develop self-discipline and respect for others. The wearing of school uniform is insisted upon. High levels of attendance and punctuality are viewed as vitally important. Good manners and courtesy to others are expected from everybody. Good order and the importance of personal relationships are insisted upon throughout the school to allow genuine learning and academic and personal development to take place. Poor behaviour will not be tolerated but every effort is made to stress the positive and celebrate achievement to boost the self-esteem, confidence and dignity of the individual members of Our Lady's. An array of out of class activities give learners the opportunity for self-expression and the enjoyment and satisfaction which comes from achievement. Motivation is enhanced through the relationships that are strengthened through engaging with staff in different situations.
The school depends on the partnership with the parents. Our home-school agreement recognises the role we play in ensuring the best for the learners. All learners receive personal study opportunities every night. Communication through reports, meetings and the learners' journals ensures close links.
In general the school aims to create an ethos that supports a sense of co-operation, pride, identity and purpose in all learners, members of staff and parents. The raising of standards is a key theme throughout Our Lady's. Our learners deserve the best. Our Catholic ethos is realised through making the most of opportunities to progress and achieve.