Forge Integrated Primary School is classed as a ‘controlled’ integrated school, i.e. under the control of the Education Authority for Northern Ireland.
This means that Forge is run like any other state school; we are not maintained by a grant, or run by a parent council. The principal manages the school, and is responsible to the Board of Governors currently made up of staff, parents and representatives of both the Education Authority and Department of Education.
Forge’s mission statement is to
‘provide an integrated learning environment which seeks to develop well rounded individuals, by encouraging enquiring minds and promoting self respect and respect for others. Whilst mainly Christian we strive to create a school community which is fully inclusive and values the active contribution of all involved with the school.’
There’s a lot in there! Here it is broken down a little bit…
- Forge is completely integrated; its intake of children of different cultures and beliefs is only a starting point. Throughout the children’s seven years at Forge they will have many opportunities to explore their own culture and appreciate the culture of others.
- We believe that children should leave with a variety of skills. They will have learned many facts and academic skills, but will also take with them thinking and problem solving skills, encouragement in all aspects of creativity, team work and interpersonal skills.
- Forge has an R.E. curriculum that looks at many aspects of Christianity but also other world religions. There is also a large overlap between RE and PDMU (Personal Development and Mutual Understanding), so for example a lesson about friendship could be classed as either. Assemblies will usually include a Christian ‘act of worship’ (a song, reading or a prayer perhaps). The children will however, be taught to respect other religions and cultures (click on the ‘Curriculum’ link, and then ‘R.E.’ for more details).
- Finally, our school really is a community. It’s not just about staff and pupils, it’s also about parents, friends and people in the locality. Forge is not just about sums and spellings and tests; it’s about people and everybody has a part to play. Maybe that’s why Forge has such a warm, welcoming atmosphere.