This letter was sent to all parents this morning by Parentmail, the first day back after half term.
Many of you will have heard that Bishop Martin recently issued a formal apology following the settlement of a legal civil claim regarding child abuse against the Right Reverend George Bell, who was Bishop of Chichester from 1929-58.
Child abuse in any form is of course abhorrent and contrary to everything Bishop Luffa stands for, and we are shocked and saddened by the news. It is vitally important that public organisations like schools and the church should be open and vigilant to ensure that young people are safe and can thrive in a trustworthy and secure environment.
As a result of this announcement, I consider it no longer appropriate for the school to have Bishop Bell’s name attached to one of its Houses. We shall start immediately the process of choosing a new name for Bell House by asking pupils and staff for their views.
The safety and security of our young people is always our prime responsibility. This has been recognized by pupils, parents, and by Ofsted and SIAMS Inspectors alike. If any parents have any concerns about this matter, please feel free to contact me.
Mr Nick Taunt, Headteacher
PRESS RELEASE – Bishop Martin’s apology in connexion with Bishop George Bell
Nick Taunt, Headteacher of Bishop Luffa School, said, “I support wholeheartedly the Bishop of Chichester’s statement about child abuse. It is right that public organisations like schools and the church should be particularly open and vigilant to ensure that young people are safe and can thrive in a trustworthy and secure environment.
Mr Taunt said, “Since arriving as Head in 2000, the security and safety of the young people in the School’s care has been an over-riding priority.
“We create an open culture in school in which pupils and staff can talk frankly about serious issues. Pupils trust the adults who work here and know that they can speak to them about any concerns they may have.
“When pupils speak to us they are always listened to. We regularly talk with pupils about any aspect of their school experience that they think needs improving.
“I am pleased that, in every formal inspection and every survey we ourselves undertake, pupils and their parents feel that the school is a safe, secure and happy environment.”
The School’s last Inspection, under the SIAMS process, took place in February 2015 and was judged outstanding in every area. It comments, “The understanding that ‘everybody matters’ and should be ‘entitled to the best’ has a significant impact on relationships across the school. Pupils and parents remark on the care and family feel and relate this to the Christian atmosphere of the school. Pupils develop a strong sense of the importance of equality as they grow in their understanding of the school’s values.”
The last OfSTED Inspection judged as outstanding every area of the School, including Safeguarding and Personal development and well-being.
Nick Taunt, Headteacher