Our Programming is Grounded in Unitarian Universalist Faith and Values

Unitarian Universalist principles and sources extend beyond words — they represent a model for an ethical, faith-filled, and compassionate life. Follen Church strives to teach the principles and sources of Unitarian Universalism through a variety of modes, such as real-world experiences, discussions, stories and crafts, and personal reflection. Each class is designed to give learners of all ages a chance to examine and discuss Unitarian Universalist values and help them integrate and implement those values into their lives.

Registration

Each child and youth must be registered in order to participate regularly in the program. Guests are welcome to VISIT up to three times before they are asked to register. While there is a fee for registration, if any program cost presents a financial hardship to your family scholarships and waivers are available. We would never want an inability to pay to prevent your child’s participation. Requests for financial assistance should be made to Beryl Aschenberg, Director of Religious Education, and are held strictly confidential.

“It Takes a Village”…

Follen Church offers a religious education program that teams trained, dedicated teachers and staff with parents and guardians of our children to promote faith exploration.  We strongly encourage each person to serve and support the religious education programs as they are able. Opportunities include: teachers and assistants and substitutes, youth mentors and group advisors, field trip and overnight chaperones, game and craft leaders, food donations, and more. If this is your first year with us, please talk with the DRE about what might be a good entry level  commitment to get your feet wet… or ways to help your family become connected to the church community.

Safety

All volunteer and paid staff are screened. A minimum of two trained staff are required in each group to ensure that no adult is alone with a child. Parents are responsible for attending to their children when they are not in the class group in order to keep our physical space safe as well. For additional Safety Procedures during the Covid 19 pandemic, please see the church’s safety policy elsewhere on our website, or visit THIS PAGE for RE-specific plans.

Behavior

In keeping with our UU principles we strive to teach respect and compassion for all persons. We expect that all of the children, youth and RE leaders will treat one another with respect, and kindness. We strive to practice patience and concern for each other inside the unique conditions of our shared physical space.

Special Needs

If your child encounters problems or needs special accommodations to participate in the life of the church please contact the RE Director for confidential conversation to brainstorm a solution in our volunteer-led program. We are all lifelong learners. Parents whose children are neuro diverse are encouraged to reach out to Follen’s Child and Family Support Committee.

Social Justice Learning

Our religious education program strives to engage children and youth of all ages in social justice work and learning. This includes opportunities for elementary school-aged children to participate in fund-raising and hands-on service programs that share UU values, Middle school retreats and trips to connect with service organizations, and for high school youth, participation in an annual service learning trip (on hold during Covid pandemic)

Anti-Racism

In 2017, the congregation passed a Follen Responds to Racism initiative. As part of this initiative, the congregation resolved to raise anti-racist children who deeply understand racial inequality and work to support racial justice. This learning is incorporated into the curricula offered to all ages in our religious education program.