Wednesday, March 23, 2011

It takes a committee...

From the Catholic Telegraph, official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati

March 17, 2011

ST. FRANCIS DE SALES DEANERY — The Archdiocesan Pastoral Council meeting March 12 had an especially full agenda, with presentations on Catholic schools, archdiocesan policy on working with labor unions and a review of the 2010 financial statement.

Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr noted that he has learned there is no standard religion curriculum for archdiocesan Catholic high schools and has asked Jim Rigg to put together a committee to examine this.

This news raises two questions for this catechist:
1. How has this only recently come to his excellency's attention? He has been at the helm for over a year, and served as coadjutor for another year before ascending to the cathedra. I would think in that time one would have gained a degree of familiarity with, among other things, the state of religious education in the Catholic schools.

2. Why does this require the formation of a committee, and what exactly is to be examined? That there is no standard curriculum is already evident.And there is no need for them to reinvent the wheel; In 2007 the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops published what is essentially a religious curriculum framework. It was entitled Guidelines for Publishers of Catechetical Texts, but it clearly lays out a scope and sequence for a national religious education curriculum. Far from being a guarded secret, this document has been the topic of many presentations at NCEA conventions and the Ohio Catholic Educator's Conference held in Cincinnati.

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