School Pastors is an initiative operated by The Ascension Trust, a national Christian charity, established in 2002, that oversees a number of projects. It is best known for the Street Pastors movement, which now has more than 9,000 volunteers in teams all over the UK and internationally.
Revd Les Isaac, founder and director of The Ascension Trust, pioneered Street Pastors because of his belief in the Bible’s challenge to the church to be a catalyst for social action.
The Ascension Trust originally planned School Pastors to be the first expression of their vision for social action in urban communities, but in the end it was Street Pastors that came first and School Pastors took several more years to reach fruition.
Like Street Pastors, the School Pastors initiative helps Christians to be relevant to and engaged with their communities.
School Pastors teams are now operating in sixteen areas across the country, in secondary schools and in the post-16 sector. A number of new areas are at various stages of set-up or information gathering.
What does a School Pastor do?
Reassurance – school pastors provide a reassuring adult presence at times in the school day when children may feel vulnerable. An adult who has the time to listen to what is worrying you and maybe to help.
Safety – looking to support the school in reducing instances of anti-social behaviour
Support – available to support the school community at the direction of the school. School pastors provide uniformed teams in groups of 2 or 3 for an hour or so in locations requested by the school. This could be by the school gates or in places where young people congregate.
As well as being there at the end of the school day, School Pastors teams may also be involved in mentoring schemes, leading assemblies and running reading clubs. There are many opportunities, with school pastors finding that once a relationship with a school is established, schools often say to them, ‘We like you … what else can you do for us?’
Chesterfield School Pastors launched in February 2014 with a team of seven volunteers and began to work in one local school. We are finding that working with and supporting individual students is our strength.
Who can be a School Pastor?
School pastors are christians from local churches, approved by a minister who knows them well. They will agree to complete the 25hrs of training and will need an enhanced CRB check. Most importantly they will be people with a heart to work with young people, taking time to listen, care and help.
If you are interested in becoming a school pastor or in supporting us as get started or would just like to know more contact :