All students and teaching staff attend a Chapel service at least once each week. On each occasion, Barker’s Christian identity and mission is articulated and affirmed.
Barker is an Anglican School and welcomes students from a variety of Christian denominations and other faith traditions.
The role of our Chaplaincy team is to inspire our community through the Bible, to know God’s purpose for us. We consider this in the big questions of life but also in the details of how we live and learn; play and perform; grow and then eventually go from this School.
In a rapidly changing culture, we believe that Anglican schools should be a safe place where students can freely investigate, test and question biblical truth.
Our educational philosophy is grounded in the precepts of the Christian gospel and in Christian teaching. Christian values undergird all that we do. The School expects that parents, who may not necessarily themselves share the Christian faith, will nonetheless encourage their sons and daughters to approach Christian teaching receptively and openly, and that they will attend special family worship services each year with their sons and daughters.
You can read more about the School's historical Anglican roots here.
The School strives to offer each student the opportunity to come to a closer understanding of the Christian faith, and the teaching staff draw upon their personal and professional qualities in ways which provide our young people with a constant example of Christian living.
Barker's Chaplaincy team are fully immersed in the life and breadth of the School.
There are four Chaplains who work in the Secondary School: Reverend Peter Tong (Senior Chaplain), Mrs Luisa Maxwell, Mr Dave Chilton and Mrs Rachael Picton. Alongside teaching, our additional responsibilities are to conduct Chapel for each year group and play a pastoral role in the lives of the students and staff. Jeff Ware is the Community Chaplain who pastorally supports and encourages members of our wider Barker community.
In the Prep and Junior School, Rev Andrew Brown and Becky Shu lead a vibrant and engaging combination of Chapel, Christian Studies and Cru that makes an understanding of God, Jesus and the Bible accessible, relevant and fun for the youngest hearts and minds in our school. Rev Brown also visits Darkinjung Barker and Ngarralingayil Barker each week for Christian Studies and Chapel.
Barker's Chaplains are available to meet with students and their families to discuss personal issues that may arise from time to time. Pastoral matters are also addressed in Chapel services, Christian studies lessons and Cru. Students and parents are welcome to contact the School Chaplain at any time for pastoral assistance.
Christian Studies teachers
Tom Anderson is the Head of Christian Studies and focuses on leading the teaching side of our team. All the Chaplains and Youth Works teach Christian Studies and you can read more about the courses here. Every year several teachers from other departments take a class or two of Christian Studies and in 2020, even Phillip Heath is teaching within our department.
Our Youth Workers are graduate teachers who work closely with students to lead Cru and lunch time Bible studies. They also teach Christian Studies and other subjects.
Message from the School Chaplain
Thank you for visiting this page to find out more about Chaplaincy at Barker.
It's my honour to lead the Chaplaincy team at the School. I’m married to Katelyn, who works at another school as a school psychologist, and we have three children Chloe, Lily and Sam. As a father of primary and high-school aged children I know well the vital contribution that schools play in the raising of our children. Environments that are warm, open and safe provide the perfect context in which to grow academically, socially and spiritually.
Until recently, my working world was that of a local church. I’ve been an Anglican Minister in churches for many years, however I’ve always been convinced of the formative nature of school ministry. For me, high school was a time of questioning and testing my faith before slowly coming to understand that Jesus had given his life for me to create a personal relationship with God my Creator and Father. It’s a privilege, then, to come to a setting like Barker and assist students in their own journey of faith during such a foundational phase in their lives.
You can read my weekly message here.
If you would like to support the Chaplaincy team by receiving regular emails with prayer points for the school, please email me.
The Reverend Pete Tong
Did you know?
Barker was bought by the Church of England (now the Anglican Church) in 1919 and the School Council was established.