Our Ethos & Values

Big enough to matter – small enough to care”

Choosing a secondary school for your son to attend for the next 7 years can be a very daunting task. All the concerns and worries over friendship groups changing, how to get to a new school, changing teachers, usually far bigger establishments, expectations of work at home and school and mixing with bigger pupils can all deter from what should be a very exciting and rewarding next step in becoming an adult.

St Boniface’s College is not a big secondary school and we pride ourselves on having a family feel. We fully appreciate that in society, as has always been the case, examination results in whatever guise they occur are very important but there should be more to spending seven years of a lifetime than simply a few bits of paper at the end. Every school should say that they are striving for academic excellence but St Boniface’s expects to go further. We are fortunate enough to have a faith that can give our lives a deeper purpose – all are encouraged to share and be proud of this aspect. This does not mean that only Catholic pupils will succeed at St Boniface’s, all are welcome in our family and diversity helps us to grow. Yes we stand up for what we believe in but we do not force others to follow, our mission is to help guide and encourage the young people who we are fortunate enough to come in contact with, along their own route but with a strong moral purpose based on Catholic teachings. We all hope that this will lead them to have a faith similar to our own but do understand if, once informed, they feel that they are not yet ready. Life is a journey not a race.

Owing partly to our size we are able to treat students as individuals, get to know them and their families well and support them through both good and challenging times. It is hard enough growing up in the twenty first century as it is, stability and standards both at home and at school act as a foundation for personal growth. New glossy buildings and expensive gadgets can be attractive but do they make for a better education or do people and relationships count? I am afraid I cannot answer that one for you as we are all different, unique.

So big enough to ensure we all strive for academic excellence yet small enough to know that each and every person is unique and made in the image of God!
The College takes its meaning from the gospels of Jesus Christ. The education it provides should affect the students for the rest of their lives. It provides each of them with a way of living that is based upon the gospel values of God and of our brothers and sisters, especially the poor and powerless.

The College seeks to instil an appreciation of the merits of an ordered community, to create ideal conditions in which learning may flourish, and to nurture the holistic development of mind and body. St. Boniface’s Catholic College provides a uniquely Catholic Christian-based education for children, of any faith, residing in the Plymouth area and beyond.

Our Mission Statement

“St Boniface’s College is a Roman Catholic Christian Community. It is committed to striving for excellence in all its members through the delivery of a broad and balanced curriculum involving spiritual, moral, cultural, academic, social and physical education, delivered to the whole young person. All teaching and learning is done within the context of the teaching of the Catholic faith.”

Chaplaincy

Our chaplaincy team is made up of a core team of Fathers Jonathan Bielawski and Jacek Kostuch and lay chaplain, Miss Fiona Hutchings . This core team is supported by all members of staff and the many students who take part in activities.

The core team is there to promote the Catholic ethos of the college through word, worship, witness, welcome and welfare. The lay chaplain, who is part time and the assistant chaplain, who is full time, are based in the chapel area and are available to provide pastoral support. We encourage students and staff to drop in for an informal chat. We can provide a listening ear and support in troubled times. Our parish priests also provide regular sacramental and pastoral support. They visit our classes and are a frequent presence in the school.

At St.Boniface’s we celebrate the liturgical year through planned services and celebrations which focus on the key feasts and events of the year. Parents are welcome to join us for those events such as the Carol Service or Easter Reflections which take place in the parish church. 
The core team works with an extended team of teachers and support staff to provide other experiences for students which will support their spiritual development. Every year group has an annual retreat day organised by the RE team. Year 7 students all take part in a residential retreat at Buckfast Abbey.
In addition students prepare and take part in assemblies on a regular basis encouraging them to reflect deeply and in a prayerful way on the issues they face in today’s world.

The chapel is open every school day and everyone is welcome to visit at any time to have a moment of quiet reflection or to speak with one of the chaplains. You will always receive a welcome. We are here to serve.
Fiona Hutchings

A Message from Mark O’Toole, Bishop of Plymouth

I have been aware in visiting the different parts of the city – and indeed the Diocese – of the impact that St Boniface’s has had on so many people’s lives. Among others who have been richly blessed by their time in the school I was delighted to meet a number of Priests who were educated at St Boniface College.

There have always been good Shepherds in the Church with the mind of Christ Jesus, the one true Shepherd – and with his compassionate and merciful heart. Your Patron – St Boniface – was one such good Shepherd. Born about the year 673 he lived firstly as a student and as a teacher in a Monastic school, and then himself went on to be a great missionary traveller, taking the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to various parts of Europe. He is remembered today particularly in Germany.

He was clearly a gifted communicator and came across to those who met him as a free man. He was able to convince, through debate and argument, so that many came to believe in the person of Jesus Christ and the power of His Gospel, such that many found freedom themselves through what St Boniface taught.

St Boniface was also a tremendously courageous person. Wherever he encountered opposition he would entrust that person to the mercy of God. He was such a good Shepherd that he was willing to lay down his life for the cause of the spiritual freedom of others, and was put to death for what he believed.

It is my hope and prayer that students and staff will be inspired by the rich heritage of their namesake, so that they can be courageous and powerful witnesses to the truth in our own day. May such a sense of missionary outreach to others be part of all of our lives and may St Boniface College continue to prepare men to live truthful and free lives after the example of their Patron.

St Boniface, pray for us.

Mark, Bishop of Plymouth