I asked Patricia Eaton, a member of Fitzroy and Director of Teaching and Learning at Stranmillis College to give us Prayer Points for the world of education during Coronavirus.
We give thanks for our young people and all they contribute to our church and community.
We pray for them all as they have had their academic year cut short so abruptly and are adapting to an uncertain future. We pray particularly for
- Those vulnerable students for whom school provides their only stability, and often the only source of a hot meal, in an uncertain life; that they will be remembered, identified and protected in the coming weeks and months.
- For those with special needs for whom the lack of school and the loss of routine can be really bewildering, especially with alternative provision hard to provide at home; that they may know your peace and be provided with the care and support they need when schools are closed.
- For those due to take exams that determine their future; that they will not be anxious about the future.
- For those changing or leaving school or university who finished in the strangest of circumstances; that they too will know your peace at this time.
- All our young people as they adapt to life without friends to socialise with in person; that the vulnerable will be befriended and that they find innovative ways to stay in touch with each other in this time of distance keeping.
- For volunteering and support opportunities that our young people can be involved in; give them creativity in ways they connect with grandparents or other older relatives they may not be able to see for a while, and guide them to find other ways to support those around them.
We pray for parents as they respond to school closure. Give them reassurance that they do not need to recreate the full experience of school and freedom from guilt because they can’t! Pray for a new rhythm of living and learning together in families to be established quickly and for creativity for all involved.
We give thanks for the dedicated workforce in education in Northern Ireland and beyond.
We pray for our teachers and educators who are facing major changes to the whole education system and being asked to make massive adjustments quickly.
- For strength and stamina in the uncertainty and the adaptability to provide a supportive teaching environment remotely.
- For those working in schools remaining open for key workers; that they know your peace and guidance as they provide support for a whole range of pupils.
We pray for education support workers such as classroom assistants, administrative staff, canteen staff and others as they find their role in these difficult times or face uncertainty about their future.
We pray for educational leaders as they make major decisions under the most challenging circumstances that impact on so many young people; for wisdom and guidance and peace of mind.