Schools chaplaincy is incredibly varied. School chaplains work in a range of schools from those that belong to faith groups, to schools that have little formal contact with a faith organisation. This can mean that often school chaplaincy is the only contact schools have with a church. In some schools, there is an employed full-time chaplain, in other schools, the local church community develops a project and offers chaplaincy to the school. 

School chaplains support the whole school community, from the pupils, to the staff, to parents and carers and to the wider community. This can include leading assemblies and opportunities for collective worship. It might mean offering pastoral support to pupils or staff at difficult times. Sometimes it means appropriately challenging school practices when things don't seem right. As with any chaplaincy, relationships are key.

 These videos from the event 'Thinking about... School Chaplaincy' offer an insight into school chaplaincy.

Videos featuring School Chaplaincy



Part of my presbyteral appointment is chaplain to Gunnerside & Reeth Confederated Primary school in Swaledale. One January, I spent time with the 14 children in Year 5 talking about New Year resolutions and the importance of keeping promises. Briefly I sketched the outline of the story of Jonah and suggested they updated it, to help the story connect with the other pupils watching their assembly.

The following week, I returned to find that a teenage girl named Jo had replaced Jonah, and she was told by God to go to the fallen city of Newcastle, as short dramas demonstrated how gambling, robbery and fighting were diverting the people from worshipping God. But Jo didn't want to go; so she got on an aeroplane flying to Spain – the inside of the aircraft becoming three plastic chairs, sitting one behind the other.

The air hostess did her quick safety routine and they were up, up and away. Soon the plane hit a storm, with the pilot announcing they had to abandon the aircraft; Jo was first on her feet as she told the crew that the storm was her fault for not obeying God. She grabbed her parachute (a handy Tesco carrier bag) and jumped from her seat to the floor, as the narrator explained how she then landed on a ferry going to Newcastle and realised there was nowhere from which she could escape God.

Janet Park
School chaplain

For more information check out our Chaplaincy Resources and Links and Chaplaincy Reading pages.

Check out these Chaplaincy Blog posts too:
Authenticity is key

These pages may also be helpful:
Supporting school life
Emotional and mental wellbeing
Changing times at home and school
The Methodist Podcast Episode 20

These external links may also be of interest:
How do I become a school chaplain?

The Methodist Church is not responsible for any third party content linked to from this website.

You will find contact details on our Chaplaincy Contacts page.