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Federation Begins Fourth Year of Parishes and Schools Working Together

posted Sep 6, 2013, 9:04 AM by Cara Koen   [ updated Sep 6, 2013, 12:36 PM ]
     The start of the 2013-14 school year marks the beginning of the fourth year of collaboration among the eleven Catholic parishes in the Northeast Deanery as the Federation of Catholic Schools.  Established in 2010, the Federation aims to strengthen our Catholic elementary schools with leadership, activities and programs that foster academic excellence and evangelization, while embracing diversity and Catholic identity.

     Of course, North County has a long history of supporting our Catholic schools, dating back to the early 1800s when St. Rose Philippine Duchesne taught and lived right here in our community at what is now known as the Old St. Ferdinand Shrine. This longstanding commitment to Catholic education does not go unnoticed. St. Louis Archbishop Robert Carlson, when speaking about his priorities for Catholic schools as part of the Alive in Christ Mission Advancement Initiative, frequently shares the Federation as one example of an effective model for collaboration among Catholic parishes and schools.

     Pastors and principals from each parish and school continue to lead the Federation by convening for quarterly meetings to review and approve collaborative programs and activities including:

  • Professional Learning Teams (PLTs) where all teachers participate in best-practice learning communities, segmented by grade level and/or subject area, sharing teaching tools and best practices to enhance learning in their classrooms.
  • Joint marketing helps to spread the good news about our schools in new and creative ways, inviting all parents to consider a Catholic education for their children.
  • Summer Academy was offered at the end of July to students entering grades 3-8 who needed additional help to prepare for the next grade level.
  • CatholicFIT, a values-based fitness and nutrition education pilot program will be implemented for 6th grade students and families in January.

     Our elementary schools are welcoming over 200 new students, many who have this opportunity to attend a Catholic school for the first time thanks to the financial assistance available through the Alive in Christ Scholarship program.  These newcomers, along with their classmates, will experience the benefits of a Catholic education including faith, academic excellence, service, discipline and morals, all rooted in developing -  through prayer - a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  As we continue our proud tradition of Catholic education here in North County, we find strength in our roots and look forward to a strong future -  working together.