Mark Beattie, principal of The Diamond Primary School, Ballymena. As a parent, church member and principal, Mark understands the various contexts that attendees will be working in, and will inspire us with his passion and experience.

Seminar Details

Select Two (One from Group A and one from Group B)


General Themes

The Changing Face of the Classroom
David Smyth, Evangelical Alliance

Shifts in society are being reflected in the classroom – how do Christian pupils and staff engage with lifestyle choices and ideologies that seem contrary to Scripture? This seminar seeks to look at some of the big topics of the day and how we might respond.

A Safe Space?
Chaired by Leanne Dunlop (SUNI)

Life is becoming increasingly complex for children and young people, meaning that school communities have a range of individual emotional and spiritual needs within them. This seminar looks at Chaplaincy as a developing model of Pastoral Care and Spiritual support and how the Church in Northern Ireland might be involved. 

Church-Specific Focus

Joel Hutchinson (SUNI) and Andy Brown (Stranmillis University College)

This seminar looks at the role of Church and Christian representation on Boards of Governors, and why we should be making the most of the opportunities afforded to us.

Parent-Related Focus

Mission at the School Gates
facilitated by Andrew and Jude Frame (Kings Church, Bangor)

Drop-Offs and Pick-Ups, Parent/Teacher interviews and Birthday Parties – parents and guardians have dozens of opportunities to connect with their child’s school community and be salt and light. This seminar will hear ideas from some parents as they seek to share God’s Good News.

School-Specific Focus

Being a Godly Teacher
Gary Halliday (Vice-Principal, Gilnahirk Primary School)

Teaching is always an influential role, but a Christian teacher has a unique opportunity to show what Jesus means to them, even in the pressurised environment that a classroom can sometimes bring. This seminar will encourage you as you seek to live for Jesus in front of children and young people who miss nothing!


General Themes

SU – not just another club
Lyndsey Marks (SUNI), James Cousley (Orangefield Primary School) and Simon Cardwell (Armagh Royal School)

Thousands of us attended an SU Group during our school days, and many cite them as being hugely influential in the development of their faith and their understanding of Community, Bible, Discipleship and Mission. Come and be inspired by the value and potential of your SU Group, or investigate starting one for the first time.

An Inclusive God
Anita Conkey (SUNI) and Mark Moorhead (SUNI)

Jesus instructed His disciples to go into all the world and teach about Him. This seminar is designed to think about what that might look like when the children and young people you’re seeking to include and teach have additional needs (intellectually, linguistically, socially).

Church-Specific Focus

Loving your Local School Community Well
Glenn Johnston (Scrabo Hall, Newtownards) and Rachel Tweedie (SUNI)

Is there a school on your doorstep? Have you considered how you might serve that School community? This seminar will be packed with practical ideas of how Churches can effectively serve, support and speak into their local schools. 

Parent-Related Focus

Raising A Bright Generation
Phil Howe (SUNI)

As fewer children and young people go to Church, your child might be the only Christian that many of their classmates know. How can parents and guardians raise children so that they understand their role as salt and light in the classroom? This seminar helps us think through some of these details. 

School-Specific Focus

Meeting the Needs of the Curriculum
Andy Brown (Stranmillis University College)

The Northern Ireland curriculum is steeped in Christian principles and the teaching of Christian faith is enshrined in legislation – so why do so many of us find it difficult to even find the time to teach a topic that means so much to us? Andy will help us think through some of these issues.