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 CHRISM MASS 2019

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Call to Continuing Conversion and Rite of Election 2019

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May 19, 2019

May 5, 2019

April 21, 2019 Easter Sunday

 

 

    The Dead Sea Scrolls series

 

   St. Nicholas School, Kinsley, Advent Cantata, Dec. 7, 2008

 

   

 

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Scroll to bottom to navigate to different departments

Superintendent addresses Catholic school

curriculum, common core standards

By Bob Voboril
Reprinted with permission from the Wichita Advance.
A Catholic school curriculum prepares students for the here and now – and for the hereafter. The aim of a Catholic school is to help students understand God’s purpose for them in this life (their vocation) on this earth and to prepare them for their destiny with God in eternity. The two go hand in hand. Schools prepare students for their vocation in life which typically means a family, continued education, and a career, but Catholic schools accomplish that goal mindful that students are destined to stand before God accountable for the gifts God has given them.
A Catholic school curriculum begins with its mission. In the Diocese of Wichita, the mission of Catholic education is to form disciples of Jesus Christ. Every course offered, indeed every action taken, must be consistent with that mission.
The mission is supported by a distinctively Catholic philosophy (beliefs) and core values. This philosophy, always consistent with the mission, explains the principles upon which the school is operated. The core values describe the primary outcomes of a Catholic education. In the Diocese of Wichita, those core values are unity, faithfulness, stewardship, and scholarship. This foundation of mission, philosophy, and core values is operationalized by the pastor, the principal, and the teachers. The pastor and the superintendent collaborate on hiring the administrator, and the administrator hires teachers under the pastor’s supervision. In the Diocese of Wichita, we work very hard to find principals who will lead a faithful school community through example and action.  Likewise, teachers have an extensive and ongoing formation for the vocation of Catholic school teacher. Our principals and many of our teachers are inspiring in their spirituality and passion for Catholic education.
Once the foundation is set and principals and teachers hired and trained, then curriculum standards are next. Curriculum standards came into existence when textbooks could no longer keep up with all that was needed to be learned in a course. We have had curriculum standards since about 1990, and the common core standards are the fifth generation of state standards.
What has caused all the fuss is that the common core standards have been adopted in much the same form in more than 40 states. Some see a conspiracy at work here, but others see common sense. Why should third grade math standards be different in Colorado, Oklahoma and Kansas or even different parts of Kansas?
There are a lot of misconceptions about the common core standards. I will mention only three. First, it is said that the common core standards will make our schools less Catholic because they are “government” standards. Almost no one has questioned the Catholicity of our schools for the last 20 years that we have been using state-approved standards, and I see no reason to do so now. Our schools need to make sure our students master these new standards, true, but diocesan curriculum is built upon mission, values, faith-filled principals and well-formed teachers. The common core standards constitute the minimum level of instruction; not the final goal.
Secondly, the common core standards are not new. They were drafted in 2007. They were adopted in Kansas in 2010-11. Our Catholic schools are in their third year of implementing these standards. Almost all the textbooks have been revised. This is not a sudden leap off a cliff into the unknown.
A third concern is that common core standards represent a government takeover of our schools. It is important in today’s secular society to weigh carefully the impact of any government actions before agreeing to them or implementing them, and we do that. Nevertheless, it is equally important not to condemn every action by the government.
Our schools have been accredited by the State of Kansas since 1955; our teachers have been licensed by the state at least that long. We accept government-funded services for remedial reading and mathematics, staff development, English learners, drug and alcohol education, food services, and transportation of students. The critical factor that bishops and superintendents must weigh is whether or not government action violates our mission and gospel values. If it does, like the HHS mandate or the question of gay marriage, it must be resisted. If it serves the common good, we should welcome it.
Once standards have been determined, the principal and teachers must convert the standards into a curriculum that integrates faith and knowledge. Catholic educators undergo ongoing staff development to develop instructional methods that will serve all students. The most appropriate instructional resources are sought out. The common core standards place more emphasis on higher level thinking and application, and Catholic educators then infuse those standards with Gospel values.
The common core standards are not perfect. No set of standards is. They are written for a secular society, just as are textbooks, drivers’ manuals, and medical prescriptions. Although educationally strong and morally acceptable, no set of standards is sufficient by themselves. They are also proving to be very challenging at the upper grade levels because of their great emphasis on critical thinking and complex problem-solving. Based in part on ACT-quality testing standards, they challenge teachers and students alike.
However, the key driver for Catholic schools must be fidelity to our mission, trust in our beliefs and core values, and confidence in our dedicated Catholic school educators. In the hands of people who don’t care or who don’t know how to use them, common core standards would be a waste of time and energy. In the hands of faith-filled educators, common core standards can become tools for excellence and stepping stones to eternity.

Voboril is superintendent of Catholic Schools for the Diocese of Wichita.

Past Issues

April 7, 2019

March 24, 2019

March 10, 2019

Feb. 24, 2019

Feb. 10, 2019

Jan. 27, 2019

Jan. 13, 2019

Dec. 23, 2018

Dec. 9, 2018

Nov. 25, 2018

Nov. 11, 2018

Oct. 28, 2018

Oct. 14, 2018

Sept. 16, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: 2018 Golf Classic; student athletes; physically challenged; Leonard Stegman; Lesson in forgiveness; Sending us on a mission

Sept. 2, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Priest crisis; Scandal; Opioid addictions; Seeds of Suicide; Leightons; St. Anne; Vincke; seminarians; Dominican Sisters; Stewardship Conference; Dead Sea Scrolls; PSR programs; Roe V. Wade

 

August 12, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Prayer and Action; Totus Tuus; Janee Bernal; Diana Ramirez; Heidy Ramirez; Bishop Gilmore honored for 20 years ministry; suicide; contraception and abortion; Dead Sea Scrolls; Humanae Vitae; certification in youth ministry; Chuck Weber; Cathedral rectory chapel; Sister Viola Heichelbech; Adam Urban

July 15, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Immigration Protest/Rally; Faith and Light Fiesta; Seeing the Dead Sea Scrolls; Corpus Christi procession; Prayers for priests; Sisters turn 100; Michael Brungardt; Gerald Vincke; Massacre in San Salvador; Action for Alex 

 

June 3, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Parish Pray for Priestly Vocations; Appeal reaches $10 million; Gangs; Seminarians; Pam Willis; Why I like being a priest; Happy Father's Day; Patricia Lujan; Tyler and Rachel Bennett; Adoption Protection Act.

May 20, 2018
KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Track meet; Beloved Sinners; Benjamin Martin retires; Smiles; Future of Fortune Telling; Hoisington mission; DofI; Getting Equipped; Spring Social; First Communion; Confirmation
KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Track meet; Beloved Sinners; Benjamin Martin retires; Smiles; Future of Fortune Telling; Hoisington mission; DofI; Getting Equipped; Spring Social; First Communion; Confirmation

May 6, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Archbishop Romero; Seeing, Touching, Tasting; Exhortation; Father Patrick Conroy; Happy Mother's Day; A child on your doorstep; Vibrant Ministries Grant; From the heart of a young father; Love Gives Life; Roman Holiday; Smartphone; retirement
Fossil Hunting

 

April 15, 2018

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Easter Vigil; Angelica Village; Colorado woman; The art of anger; Cimarron Couple; Staats; Adoption; 

Father Ultan Murphy anniversary; Coughlan; Spiritual Advisor to Hoodlums; Woman of Courage; Oration contest; Darcy Feist  

 

April 1, 2018

 

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Defending Adoption; Led by the Spirit; Knights; ABC Pregnancy Center;
Memorial of Mary; Homeless; Relics; Down syndrome abortion; Chrism Mass

 

March 18, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: SKYAC; Aleksandr Men; Fasting for Priestly Vocations; Uganda; School for deaf; Rannah Evetts; Oberle; Rachel and Doug Trombley; Oscar Romero; Paul VI; DACA

 

 

March 4, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Fasting for priestly vocations; Father Juan; Fasting and prayer;
Quest Weekend 2018; DACA; With God, anything is possible; Homelessness in our communities; Rhubarb, Kansas;
What's the point of fasting; Rite of Election; same-sex couples

 

Feb. 18, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Catholic Schools Week; Rachel Doll; Ellinwood; Great Bend; Garden City; Ness City; Dodge City; Sister Rita Schwarzenberger; Nigeria; Bishop Hermes; Fasting for Priestly Vocations; World Day for Consecrated Life; 50th Anniversary St. Dominic School; What will life be like in 50 years?

 

 

Feb. 4, 2018

 

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: March for Life; Tracy and Ross Smith; Adoption; Vibrant Ministries; Faith and Light;
Pro-Life; Mortal sin to discard elderly; DACA; Abortion; Dreamers; Human Trafficking

 

Jan. 21, 2018

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Louise Korbe; Anne Frank; Miep Gies; Home Heat; Father Solanus

 

Jan. 7, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Good news and kingdom living; dreamers; Sister Teresa Orozco; Infant Adoption; Elderly; a moral conundrum; seminarian; feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

 

 

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