This is the story of one school’s transition from a state comprehensive to a Church of England Academy. This report is a personal reflection on this process of transformation. It is an honest tale of my fears and doubts as well as the opportunities presented to embrace a vision of life in all its fullness.
It may be helpful to the reader to see this report as an improvised play. With this in mind, I have chosen to present this report in two ‘acts’. Act one scene one will give some context for this tale of transition, the opportunities it has presented and the prospects for future development. In act one scene two, I will tell a story of how the school initially set about developing a distinctively Christian character and how we have begun to find a way for Ilfracombe to realise a ‘deeply Christian’ vision. The second act will focus on two areas for development as a result of this vision. Firstly, I will discus the rationale and educational value of collective worship in schools and how Ilfracombe introduced and began to develop a dynamic model for collective worship suitable for our context. In the second scene I will comment on the forging and development of various community links, in particular the role and purpose of local clergy and the Christian youth worker in school. At each stage in the journey I will pose questions in relation to the further development of these key areas.