Values and Ethos
Our LOVE values each person and the gifts they bring; it encourages all to participate in building a school community in which all can flourish.
At St Mark’s we:
Help one another
Care for each other
Our HOPE means that we expect the best of ourselves and others; it enables perseverance in the face of setbacks and encourages the fresh starts that come from forgiving ourselves and others.
At St Mark’s we:
Forgive ourselves and others
Persevere to overcome challenges
Listen to the views of others
Our TRUST encourages us to rely on God, and one other, as we all take responsibility for ourselves and for the whole school community.
The Symbol of the Lion
In the Gospel of Mark, the writer Mark describes St John the Baptist’s voice (which witnesses said sounded like a roaring lion) crying out in the wilderness to prepare the way for Jesus’ ministry, and Mark himself helped deliver the Gospel message to people with boldness, like a lion. So people began associating Saint Mark with the lion.
The lion symbolises courage, strength and leadership. At St Mark’s, we are courageous in heart, strong in our faith and leaders in the community through service.
Our Local Christian Community
We are proud members of the Diocese of Southwark https://southwark.anglican.org/
With strong links with our local Church St Mark's Church in Mitcham http://www.stmarksmitcham.org.uk/
In the Classroom
St. Mark’s is a learning community based on the core values of Love, Trust and Hope. We spend most of our time learning together in lessons under the leadership of adults.
Our Golden Rule is “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” and;
In St Mark’s we:
|Do what we are asked to do -
|Listen to others -
|and give people a chance to speak
|Are respectful, courteous and polite -
|all the time
|Respect personal space -
|we keep our hands and feet to ourselves
|Work hard -
|and challenge ourselves
|Are truthful and honest -
|we admit our mistakes
|Are nice to each other -
|we avoid hurtful behaviour
|Forgive others -
|we all need a second chance
How our Local Governing Body (LGB) Contribute
As an LGB, we understand and take seriously our responsibilities in terms of ensuring that St Mark’s has developed and implemented its inclusive and distinctive Christian vision and values of Love, Hope, Trust and Transformation for all.
We play a key role in monitoring the impact of the Academy’s vision and values to ensure that it enables all students and staff to be transformed by the renewing of their minds, realise their God given potential and develop their unique gifts and talents so that they flourish and can live “life in all its fulness”.
As local governors, an important part of our role is to preserve the Academy’s original foundation by promoting the importance of Academy engagement in diocesan and national school initiatives. We also ensure that the Academy’s distinctive Christian vision and values shape policies, actions, decisions and strategic planning.
One of our central responsibilities as governors is to ensure that a robust self-evaluation process is in place that involves the school community in evaluating the effectiveness of St Mark’s as a church school which includes focussed link local governor visits, participation in SIAMS reviews conducted by the diocese of Southwark as well as taking part in staff and student panels and joining acts of worship.
Rachel Norman - Chair of Governors
British values are at the forefront of all we do at the Academy. Students are taught to think morally and to distinguish between right and wrong. This is particularly evident in RE lessons, PSHE, assemblies and the curriculum in general.
We work in partnership with our police officer on site, and he acts as a role model and informs students on criminal laws.
We teach students how to channel their disagreements through the school council, debate clubs, and to lead change through our extensive student leadership programme.
Through our curriculum, we teach students about ethics, this is especially evident in RE, PSHE, Citizenship and Philosophy. Lessons on euthanasia, British-ness and diversity, abortion and human rights actively support students in understanding other viewpoints on these complex issues.
Our behaviour policy establishes a clear use of rewards and sanctions when appropriate and the staff gives a clear reason why they are being given out. Positive behaviour to and from school is reinforced by the presence of our senior leadership team in the local community. It is also reflected in our core values of Love, Hope and Trust.
Trips contribute to students actively learning about contemporary British issues, for example trips to Merton Council allowed students across the key stages to take part in debates which included voting at 16 and the laws on domestic abuse.
Achievements, Awards & Accreditations
At St Mark's we are extremely proud to have been the first Secondary school in the UK to be awarded the Enhanced award for values-based education.
We are also aspirational in our ambition to offer exceptional education for all. As such, we're working towards achieving all SSAT accreditations against their rigorous Framework for Exceptional Education. So far we're making good progress with our leading practice identified in the three (of twelve) areas to the left.
We are fortunate to work with the London Borough of Merton to offer specialist provision to newly arrived refugees and students requiring significant support to develop the ability to master the English Language.
We employ a dedicated team, with a wide range of linguistic and specialist skills, who provide a nurturing, inclusive, and rigorous environment in which a range of students, arriving from across the world, are supported to thrive.
The following video tells the story of two of our students who access this provision.