Questions for Reflection and Assessment

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Catholic Identity in Education: Questions for Reflection and Assessment helps Catholic school leaders facilitate reflection upon those elements the Church expects to be present in all Catholic schools and which distinguish them from other schools. The questions are structured upon five principles of Catholic identity derived from Church documents related to education. The five principles are: Inspired by Divine Mission; Models Christian Communion; Encounters Christ in Prayer, Scripture, and Sacraments; Integrally Forms the Human Person and Imparts a Christian Understanding of the World. Each principle includes a summary which is comprehensive, yet concise and is followed by a series of questions intended to serve as a general resource to guide Catholic school leaders in their efforts to enhance and assess their school’s Catholic identity.

The first four questions of each principle follow a general pattern. The remaining questions address specific sub-topics grouped according to content.

Intention for Use

Catholic Identity in Education: Questions for Reflection and Assessment is intended to help Catholic school leaders create or inform internal self-assessments of their school’s Catholic identity. It is not structured as a stand-alone or ready- to – use evaluation tool, but may be adapted to fulfill such a purpose.

Suggestions for Use

School leaders can use the resource to begin a global analysis of the school as they begin to gain a sense of direction for school improvement. Not every question needs to be asked or answered. The purpose of the document is to open up potential lines of inquiry and spark internal conversations leading eventually to targeted areas for school improvement.

Some schools may choose to adapt elements of Catholic Identity in Education: Questions for Reflection and Assessment into a series of faculty in-service programs tailored to their school’s needs. Such an exercise might involve choosing an area of focus and then dividing the faculty into small groups for discussion and then bringing them back together for group processing. Some schools may want to assign small groups to different topics and then have them present their findings leading the entire gathering in a discussion of the target area. Whatever dynamic is selected, school administrators should be present at group discussions to answer questions as they arise and to add additional information if needed.  All individuals involved in the learning environment should be involved in process that is open, safe, and positive. A process that is slow and deliberate will allow for fruitful, honest, and nuanced discussions. These discussions might then provide the opportunity for recording strengths and weaknesses, brainstorming ideas to enhance Catholic identity, and making specific plans for growth.

 

Principle I: Inspired by Divine Mission

Catholic education is an expression of the Church’s mission of salvation and an instrument of evangelization:1 to make disciples of Christ and to teach them to observe all that He has commanded.2  Through Catholic education, students encounter God, “who in Jesus Christ reveals His transforming love and truth.”3  Christ is the foundation of Catholic education;4 He journeys with students through school and life as “genuine Teacher” and “perfect Man.”5 As a faith community in unity with the Church and in fidelity to the Magisterium, students, parents, and educators give witness to Christ’s loving communion in the Holy Trinity.6  With this Christian vision, Catholic education fulfills its purpose of “critical, systematic transmission of culture in the light of faith”7 and the integral formation of the human person by developing each student’s physical, moral, intellectual, and spiritual gifts in harmony, teaching responsibility and right use of freedom, and preparing students to fulfill God’s calling in this world and to attain the eternal kingdom for which they were created.8 Catholic education is sustained by the frequent experience of prayer, Sacred Scripture, and the Church’s liturgical and sacramental tradition. 9

Questions to Aid Reflection or Assessment

  •  How does the school, through the mission statement, governing documents, policies, and publications, express institutional commitment to the Church’s teaching on the divine mission of Catholic education?
  •  How does the school ensure members of the community (board, administration, faculty, staff, volunteers, students and parents) are committed to the Church’s teaching on the divine mission of Catholic education?
  • How does the school ensure employees and volunteers have the necessary knowledge, skills, dispositions and ongoing training to fulfill the Church’s teaching on the divine mission of Catholic education?
  • How does the school evaluate programs and personnel to ensure institutional commitment to the Church’s teaching on the divine mission of Catholic education?
  • How does the school ensure institutional commitment to the Church’s teaching on the divine mission of Catholic education, including…
    • the school is a place of encountering God and His love and truth?
    • the school has Christ as its foundation?
    • the school is a community united with the Church?
    • the school is faithful to the Magisterium?
    • the school provides frequent opportunities for prayer, reading of scripture, and the Church’s liturgical and sacramental traditions?
    • the school engages in the integral formation of the human person—spiritual, intellectual, and physical?
    • the school presents a Christian worldview of humanity and the dignity of the person?
    • the school transmits culture in the light of faith?
    • the school prepares students to be instruments of evangelization?
  • How does the school’s mission statement demonstrate a commitment to Catholic identity?
  • How does the school review its mission statement to ensure fidelity to the divine mission of Catholic education?
  • How does the school review fidelity to its mission?
  • How does the school ensure each member of the governing body is informed of and committed to the responsibility to respect, promote, strengthen, and defend the Catholic identity of the school?
  • How does the school ensure each member of the governing body is a practicing Catholic?
  • How does the governing body of the school advance the school’s Catholic mission?
  • How does the governing body ensure policies, programs, and strategic planning, are guided by the Church’s mission for Catholic education?
  • How are members of the school community informed of the school’s Catholic mission and educational philosophy to ensure understanding and commitment?
  • How does the school ensure that the educational philosophy is in harmony with the Church’s teaching on the divine mission of Catholic education?
  • How aware is the broader community of the school’s Catholic mission?
  • How does the school protect the mission of Catholic education in light of new educational paradigms, consumerist demands, government interference, threats to religious freedom, secular curricular standards, and societal expectations?

 

Principle II: Models Christian Communion and Identity

Catholic education teaches communion with Christ, by living communion with Christ and imitating the love and freedom of the Trinity.10 This communion begins in the home—with the divinely ordered right and responsibility of parents to educate their children—and extends to the school community in support and service to the needs of the family.11 It unites families and educators with a shared educational philosophy to form students for a relationship with God and with others.12 The educational community is united to the universal Church in fidelity to the Magisterium, to the local Church, and to other schools and community organizations.13

The school community is a place of ecclesial experience, in which the members model confident and joyful public witness in both word and action and teach students to live the Catholic faith in their daily lives.14 In an environment “humanly and spiritually rich,” everyone is aware of the living presence of Jesus evidenced by a Christian way of thought and life, expressed in “Word and Sacrament, in individual behaviour, [and] in friendly and harmonious interpersonal relationships.”15  The school climate reproduces, as far as possible, the “warm and intimate atmosphere of family life.”16 As members of the Church community, students experience what it means to live a life of prayer, personal responsibility, and freedom reflective of Gospel values. This, in turn, leads them to grow in their commitment to serve God, one another, the Church, and society.17

All teachers and leaders possess adequate skills, preparation, and religious formation and possess special qualities of mind and heart as well as the sensitivity necessary for authentic witness to the gospel and the task of human formation.18 Teachers and leaders of the educational community should be “practicing Catholics, who can understand and accept the teachings of the Catholic Church and the moral demands of the Gospel, and who can contribute to the achievement of the school’s Catholic identity and apostolic goals.”19

Questions to Aid Reflection or Assessment

  • How does the school ensure that members of the community (board, administration, faculty, staff, volunteers, students and parents) are committed to modeling and teaching Christian communion?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers have the necessary knowledge skills, dispositions, and ongoing training to model and teach Christian communion?
  • How does the school ensure consistency and harmony between home and school, meaningful involvement of parents, and responsiveness to the needs of parents in teaching and living Christian communion?
  • How does the school evaluate programs and personnel to ensure that they model Christian communion?
  • How does the school ensure that formation of students is in communion with the Catholic Church?
  • How does the school instill in students a responsibility to respect, promote, strengthen, and protect the Catholic identity of the school?
  • How does the school ensure that students understand expectations for learning and behavior that reflect Catholic teaching and practice?
  • How does the school ensure that formation of students is in and for communion with others?
  • How does the school assist students to develop and nurture harmonious relationships with each other, with parents, and with employees and volunteers?
  • How does the school assist students to develop respect, kindness, mercy, and forgiveness when interacting with each other, parents, school employees, and volunteers?
  • How does the school assist students in developing virtuous ways to heal hurting or broken relationships?
  • How does the school ensure that the community is united in faith to the Catholic Church and to the Magisterium?
  • How do school leaders communicate with and support the needs of local Catholic pastors, priests, and religious?
  • How does the school community serve, support, and participate in the activities of local parishes and Catholic apostolates?
  • How does the school demonstrate respect and faithfulness to the teaching authority of the local and universal Church?
  • How does the school ensure that operations are consistent with the Code of Canon Law, Catechism of the Catholic Church, and other magisterial teachings of the Church?
  • How does the school protect Catholic moral norms in the selection of outside service providers and organizations?
  • How does the school protect Catholic moral norms in the approval of student and faculty organizations, associations, or activities?
  • How does the school ensure that the community is united in service to others?
  • How does the school support and serve the local community in fulfilling the mission of Catholic education?
  • How does the school support and collaborate with other schools and community organizations in fulfilling the mission of Catholic education?
  • How does the school ensure communion with parents?
  • How are parents invited to participate in a meaningful partnership with the school and community?
  • How does the school assist Catholic and non-Catholic parents to integrate into the Catholic community and, if appropriate, formally transition into the Catholic Church?
  • How does the school ensure that non-Catholic families feel part of the community, and, if appropriate, create opportunities to further explore and understand the teachings of the Catholic Church?
  • How does the community, in a supportive role with the school, assist families who are struggling with personal challenges, difficulties, and crises?
  • How does the school make Catholic education accessible to large or economically disadvantaged families?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers live in communion?
  • How does the school assist employees and volunteers to develop and nurture harmonious relationships with each other, students, and families?
  • How does the school assist employees and volunteers to develop respect, kindness, mercy, and forgiveness when interacting with each other, parents, and members of the school community?
  • How does the school’s environment evidence a Christian way of life that reflects an extension of the warmth of family life?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers live in communion with the Catholic Church?
  • How does the school express to all employees and volunteers the expectation to respect, promote, strengthen, and protect the Catholic identity of the school?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers are practicing Catholics who understand and respect the teachings of the Catholic Church, the moral demands of the Gospel, and are committed to public witness of the Church’s teachings in both word and action?
  • How does the school monitor, assist, and hold accountable employees and volunteers to ensure a commitment to Catholic ideals, teachings and principles?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers are committed to, and participate in, the religious formation of students and catechetical ministry of the school?
  • How does the school ensure that organizations and associations to which employees and volunteers belong conform to Catholic ideals, principles, and teachings?
  • How does the school, in the rare instance when only a non-Catholic is available to fill a teaching position other than a theology class, ensure that the teacher is aware, supportive, and respectful of the school’s Catholic mission and identity?
  • How does the school ensure that only Catholic faculty are assigned to teaching positions where formal catechesis occurs?
  • How does the school ensure that employees receive ongoing professional development and formation in moral and religious principles, the social teachings of the Catholic Church, and critical issues in society today?

 

Principle III: Encounters Christ in Prayer, Scripture & Sacraments

Rooted in Christ, Catholic education is continually fed and stimulated by Him in the frequent experience of prayer, Sacred Scripture, and the Church’s liturgical and sacramental tradition.20 The transmission of faith, catechesis, is intrinsically linked to these living encounters with Christ, by which He nurtures and educates souls in the divine life of grace and the gifts of the Holy Spirit.21 By their witness and sharing in these encounters, educators help students grow in understanding of what it means to be a member of the Church.22 Students discover the real value of the Sacraments, especially the Eucharist and Reconciliation, in accompanying the Christian in the journey through life. They learn “to open their hearts in confidence to Father, Son, and Holy Spirit through personal and liturgical prayer”, which makes the mystery of Christ present to students.23

Questions to Aid Reflection or Assessment

  • How does the school ensure that members of the community (board, administration, faculty, staff, volunteers, students, and parents) are committed to providing opportunities for living encounters with Christ?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers have the necessary knowledge, skills, dispositions, and ongoing training to provide opportunities for living encounters with Christ?
  • How does the school ensure consistency and harmony between home and school, meaningful involvement of parents, and responsiveness to the needs of parents in providing opportunities for living encounters with Christ?
  • How does the school evaluate programs and personnel to ensure opportunities to encounter Christ in prayer, scripture, and the Sacraments?
  • How does the school ensure opportunities for prayer, liturgy, and the Sacraments are prioritized on the school calendar and daily schedule?
  • How does the school ensure opportunities for students to encounter Christ in:
    • personal prayer?
    • community prayer?
    • essential traditional Catholic prayers?
    • Eucharistic adoration, benediction, and procession?
    • Marian devotions?
    • days of reflection?
    • prayers for particular devotions or charisms of the school?
    • prayer in the classroom?
    • prayer during extracurricular activities and programs?
    • prayers of the liturgical season and feast days?
    • prayers for spiritual direction?
    • prayers for vocational discernment?
  • How does the school ensure that prayer is meaningful, respectful, and assists students in   deepening their relationship with God?
  • How does the school ensure opportunities for students to encounter Christ in scripture through:
    • individual reading and contemplation?
    • community reading and contemplation?
    • frequent reference to Scripture in classroom instruction?
    • instruction in authentic interpretation of Scripture through courses focused on catechesis and exegesis?
  • How does the school ensure opportunities for students to encounter Christ in the Sacraments?
  • How often does the school provide opportunities for participation in the Mass and reception of the Eucharist?
  • How does the school form students in the meaning, value, and proper participation in the Mass?
  • How does the school form students in the meaning, value, and proper reception of the Eucharist?
  • How often does the school provide students the opportunity for participation in the Sacrament of Reconciliation?
  • How does the school form students in the meaning, value, and proper reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation?
  • How does the school form students in the meaning, value, and preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation?
  • How does the school ensure that liturgies and Reconciliation follow Church norms?
  • How does the school reflect on the experience of students in these encounters of prayer, scripture, and the Sacraments to ensure that they are personal and meaningful?
  • How does the school ensure that spiritual direction is available and administered by qualified and faithful priests, religious, or trained laity?
  • How does the school ensure that there is an active program to promote vocations and vocational discernment to religious life?
  • How does the school support parents, students, faculty, and parishes in sacramental preparation for Baptism, first Reconciliation, first Holy Communion, and Confirmation?
  • How often are retreats provided for students, employees, and parents?
  • How does the school ensure that opportunities for spiritual retreats are formational and effective in deepening a relationship with God?
  • How does the school ensure opportunities for employees and volunteers to encounter Christ in prayer, scripture and the Sacraments?
  • How does the school provide formation for employees and volunteers in the meaning and value of the liturgy, the Eucharist, prayer, and the Sacraments, to effectively share these “living encounters with Christ”?
  • How does the school encourage participation by employees in prayer, retreats, liturgies, and the Sacraments?
  • How does the school ensure employees and volunteer are witnesses to Gospel values?
  • How does the school provide professional development for employees to aid in the integration of scripture according to their particular duties?
  • How do school employees and volunteers assist and encourage, students and families to participate in the prayer and sacramental life of the school?
  • How frequently does the school provide opportunities for parents to encounter Christ through prayer, liturgies, and the Sacraments?
  • How does the school inform students and families about the use of sacramentals to ensure an understanding of their purpose in faith and devotion?
  • How does the school ensure that spiritual direction is available and administered by qualified and faithful priests, religious, or trained laity?
  • How does the school ensure that sacred images, icons, artwork, furnishings, and spaces are present and facilitate opportunities for living encounters with God?

 

Principle IV: Integrally Forms the Human Person

A complex task of Catholic education is the integral formation of students as physical, intellectual, and spiritual beings called to perfect humanity in the fullness of Christ.24 The human person is “created in ‘the image and likeness’ of God; elevated by God to the dignity of a child of God; unfaithful to God in original sin, but redeemed by Christ; a temple of the Holy Spirit; a member of the Church; destined to eternal life.”25 Catholic education assists students to become aware of the gift of Faith, worship God the Father, develop into mature adults who bear witness to the Mystical Body of Christ, respect the dignity of the human person, provide service, lead apostolic lives, and build the Kingdom of God.26

Catholic education forms the conscience through commitment to authentic Catholic doctrine.  It develops the virtues and characteristics associated with what it means to be Christian so as to resist relativism, overcome individualism, and discover vocations to serve God and others.27 “Intellectual development and growth as a Christian go forward hand in hand” where faith, culture, and life are integrated throughout the school’s program to provide students a personal closeness to Christ enriched by virtues, values, and supernatural gifts.28 As a child of God, made in his image, human formation includes the development of personal Christian ethics and respect for the body by promoting healthy development, physical activity, and chastity.29

In Catholic education, “There is no separation between time for learning and time for formation, between acquiring notions and growing in wisdom”; education and pedagogy, inspired by Gospel values and distinguished by the “illumination of all knowledge with the light of faith” allows formation to become living, conscious and active.30 The atmosphere is characterized by discovery and awareness that enkindles a love for truth and a desire to know the universe as God’s creation. The Christian educational program facilitates critical thinking that is ordered, precise, and responsible as it builds strength and perseverance in pursuit of the truth. 31

Questions to Aid Reflection or Assessment

  • How does the school ensure that members of the community (board, administration faculty, staff, volunteers, students, and parents) are committed to the integral formation of students?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers have the necessary knowledge, skills, dispositions and ongoing training for the integral formation of students?
  • How does the school ensure consistency and harmony between the home and school, meaningful involvement of parents, and responsiveness to the needs of parents in the integral formation of students?
  • How does the school evaluate programs and personnel to ensure the integral formation of students?
  • How does the school ensure a strong foundation in catechesis for students to understand and appreciate the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church?
  • How is the Catholic faith integrated into academic, co-curricular, and extracurricular programs?
  • How does the school’s catechetical program engage both the intellect and will of students?
  • How does the school’s program provide students with an understanding of the history of the Catholic Church?
  • How does the school integrate the teachings of the Church when addressing ecumenical and interreligious issues?
  • How does the school ensure students’ moral formation is faithful to the teachings of the Catholic Church?
  • How does the school instill in students a desire to live the truth and practice holiness in their daily lives?
  • How does the school teach students that authentic freedom is the ability to do what God desires for them and not just what one wants to do?
  • How does the school instill in students a respect for religious freedom and a sense of responsibility for its protection and use?
  • How does the school instill in students the virtue and wisdom needed to avoid sin, the near occasion of sin, and the loss of a sense of sin?
  • How do the school’s disciplinary policies reflect a commitment to teach virtue?
  • How does the school express the reality of God’s mercy and forgiveness so students, in turn, will model mercy and forgiveness for others?
  • How does the school instill in students the Christian obligation to live lives of love and service, seek justice, and minister to the poor, marginalized, and outcast?
  • How does the school instill in students an understanding and appreciation for the moral and social teachings of the Church?
  • How does the school acknowledge and encourage virtuous behavior throughout the school community?
  • How does the school ensure a commitment to the integration of Catholic intellectual traditions throughout the academic program?
  • How does the school’s educational philosophy, standards, and pedagogy embrace knowledge for its own sake and move beyond an accumulation of knowledge for utilitarian ends?
  • How does the school provide for learning opportunities that develop creativity, reflection, critical thinking, and moral decision-making?
  • How does the school assist students to integrate faith and life?
  • How does the school provide for interdisciplinary instruction to expose underlying relationships between subject matters?
  • How does the school promote dialogue between faith and reason?
  • How does the school foster in students a love for truth and a desire for knowledge about God and His creation?
  • How does the school introduce students to the transcendentals of truth, beauty, and goodness?
  • How does the school teach students to confront materialism and relativism?
  • How does the school ensure that academic disciplines and instruction instill in students ethical and religious principles faithful to Catholic teaching?
  • How does the school ensure that students understand and appreciate man’s integral nature as both a spiritual and physical being?
  • How does the school instill in students an understanding that man is created by God, made in His image and likeness, and destined for eternal life with Him?
  • How does the school instill in students a respect for the dignity and sanctity of human life?
  • How does the school monitor human sexuality programs and teaching about other sensitive topics to ensure fidelity to teachings of the Church?
  • How does the school partner with and respect the role of parents as primary educators when introducing topics of a sensitive nature into the curriculum?
  • How does the school instill and promote in students the virtue of chastity?
  • How do the school’s expectations for decency and modesty in speech, action, and dress encourage respect for one’s body and the dignity of others?
  • How does the school prepare students to resist the temptations associated with misuse of technology and the negative influences of secular media?
  • How does the school instill in students a Christian view of family life and the vocation of marriage as an expression of Trinitarian love?
  • How does the school assist students to understand the relationship between mind, body, and soul and the importance of caring for one’s spiritual, physical, and mental well-being?
  • How does the school provide for the unique needs of students who have educational, developmental, or physical exceptionalities?
  • How does the school ensure that co-curricular and extracurricular programs provide for the integral formation of students in mind, body, and spirit?
  • How does the school ensure that students understand and appreciate the integral formation of mind, body, and soul in co-curricular and extracurricular activities?
  • How does the school approve clubs, co-curricular, and extracurricular activities that are faithful to the Church’s teaching and allow for the intellectual, physical, and spiritual formation of students?
  • How does the school’s athletic program contribute to the spiritual development of students and allow them to grow in Christian virtue?
  • How do the visual and performing arts foster the integral formation of students and aid in the development of Christian virtue?
  • How often does the school create opportunities for extracurricular service projects to allow students to build the Kingdom of God through ministry to the poor, marginalized, and outcast?
  • How do field trips enhance the intellectual, spiritual, or physical formation of students?
  • How do school dances and music selections foster the integral formation of students and aid in the development of Christian virtue?

 

Principle V: Imparts a Christian Understanding of the World

In the light of faith, Catholic education critically and systematically transmits the secular and religious “cultural patrimony handed down from previous generations,” especially that which makes a person more human and contributes to the integral formation of students.32 Both educator and student are called to participate in the dialogue of culture and to pursue “the integration of culture with faith and of faith with living.”33 Catholic education imparts “a Christian vision of the world, of life, of culture, and of history,” ordering “the whole of human culture to the news of salvation.”34 This hallmark of Catholic education, to “bring human wisdom into an encounter with divine wisdom,”35 cultivates “in students the intellectual, creative, and aesthetic faculties of the human person,” introduces a cultural heritage, and prepares them for professional life and to take on the responsibilities and duties of society and the Church.36 Students are prepared to work for the evangelization of culture and for the common good of society.37

Questions to Aid in Reflection or Assessment

  • How does the school ensure that members of the community (board, administration, faculty, staff, volunteers, students and parents) are committed to imparting a Christian understanding of the world?
  • How does the school ensure that employees and volunteers have the necessary knowledge, skills, dispositions and ongoing training to impart a Christian understanding of the world?
  • How does the school ensure consistency and harmony between home and school, meaningful involvement of parents, and responsiveness to the needs of the parents in imparting a Christian understanding of the world?
  • How does the school evaluate programs and personnel to ensure that they impart a Christian understanding of the world?
  • How does the school ensure the transmission of Catholic culture to allow for a Christian understanding of the world?
  • How does the school emphasize Catholic contributions to theology, philosophy, ethics, literature, science, mathematics, and the visual and performing arts?
  • How does the school ensure that students understand the impact of a Catholic worldview on language, idioms, intellectual tradition, and stories of western culture?
  • How does the school ensure that students gain cultural literacy and fluency in language, idioms, stories, civics, and knowledge that forms the American experience?
  • How does the school ensure that students gain cultural literacy and fluency in language, idioms, stories, philosophy, civics, and knowledge that forms the Western experience?
  • How does the school foster appreciation for the good and beautiful, when it can be found in a culture’s accomplishments, traditions, and arts?
  • How does the school ensure that Catholic culture is transmitted with attention to its religious dimension?
  • How does the school present a Christian anthropology of man (e.g., who man is, especially in his relationship with God and creation; man’s bodily integrity and human dignity)?
  • How does the school instill Catholic values?
  • How does the school ensure that curriculum standards, guides, texts, and pedagogy integrate truths of the Catholic faith?
  • How does the school instill in students analytical reasoning and ethics to critically evaluate culture according to Catholic moral and social teachings?
  • How does the school engage students in dialogue comparing culture and the Catholic faith?
  • How does the school encourage students to pursue an integration of culture with faith and faith with living?
  • How does the school ensure that students are prepared to evangelize culture and their fellow man?
  • How does the school form students’ intellectual, creative, and aesthetic faculties to assist in ordering culture to God’s will and truth?
  • How does the school instill in students the desire to serve the common good and promote human rights, human dignity, and religious freedom?
  • How does the school prepare students for professional life to fulfill responsibilities and duties to society and the Church?
  • How does the school explicitly encourage students to bring others to Christ and grow the Church?

 

 

Notes

1 Sacred Congregation for Catholic Education, The Catholic School (Vatican City, 1977) 5-7; Pope Paul VI, Gravissimum Educationis (Vatican City, 1965) 2; United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, To Teach as Jesus Did (Washington, National Conference of Catholic Bishops, 1972) 7.

2 Matthew 28:19-20.

3 Pope Benedict XVI, Meeting with Catholic Educators: Address of His Holiness Benedict XVI (Washington, April 2008) 2; Pope Benedict XVI, Spe Salvi (Vatican City, 2007) 4.

4 The Catholic School (1977) 34; Congregation for Catholic Education, Educating Today and Tomorrow: A Renewing Passion (Vatican, 2014) III.

5 Congregation for Catholic Education, The Religious Dimension of Education in a Catholic School (Vatican City, 1988) 25.

6 Congregation for Catholic Education, Educating Together in Catholic Schools: A Shared Mission Between Consecrated Persons and the Lay Faithful (Vatican City, 2007) 5, 10; The Religious Dimension of Education 44.

7 The Catholic School (1977) 49.

8 Canon Law Society of America, Code of Canon Law (Washington, D.C., 1983) 795; Gravissimum Educationis, Introduction; Congregation for Catholic Education, Circular Letter to the Presidents of Bishops’ Conferences on Religious Education in Schools (Vatican City, 2009) 1.

9 The Catholic School (1977) 54.

10 Educating Together 10, 12-14.

11 Code of Canon Law 793 §1; Congregation for Catholic Education, Lay Catholics in Schools: Witnesses to Faith (Vatican City, 1982) 12.

12 Lay Catholics in Schools 22; The Catholic School (1977) 53; The Religious Dimension of Education 34.

13 Educating Together 50; The Religious Dimension of Education 44.

14 Educating Together 5; Congregation for Catholic Education, Educating in Intercultural Dialogue in the Catholic School: Living in Harmony for a Civilization of Love (Vatican, 2103) 86; Lay Catholics in Schools 18; United States Conference Catholic Bishops, Renewing Our Commitment to Catholic Elementary & Secondary Schools in the Third Millennium (Washington, DC, 2005) excerpt.

15 The Religious Dimension of Education 26, 28.

16 The Religious Dimension of Education 25-26, 28-29, 40; Educating Together 48.

17 Code of Canon Law 795; To Teach As Jesus Did 107; The Religious Dimension of Education 39; Educating Today and Tomorrow, conclusion.

18 Gravissimum Educationis 5, 8; Code of Canon Law 803 §2; To Teach as Jesus Did 104.

19 United States Catholic Conference Bishops, National Directory for Catechesis (Washington DC, 2005) 231-233; Congregation for Catholic Education, The Catholic School on the Threshold of the Third Millennium (Vatican, 1997) 19.

20 The Catholic School (1977) 54-55; Pope Pius XI, Divini Illius Magistri (Vatican City, 1929) 15-17, 76; Catechism of the Catholic Church (Vatican City, 1993) 2675; Educating Today and Tomorrow I, 1b.

21 Pope John Paul II, Catechesi Tradendae (Vatican City, 1979) 23; Educating Together 17, 26.

22 The Religious Dimension of Education 78; Educating Together 26.

23 The Religious Dimension of Education 79, 83.

24 Circular Letter 1; The Catholic School on the Threshold 4; The Religious Dimension of Education 98.

25 The Catholic School on the Threshold 9; The Religious Dimension of Education 55, 84.

26 The Religious Dimension of Education 95; The Catholic School (1977) 7; Educating Today and Tomorrow III.

27 The Catholic School on the Threshold 10; The Catholic School (1977) 12, 45; Educating Together 46.

28 The Religious Dimension of Education 51, 63; Educating in Intercultural Dialogue 64-67; The Catholic School (1977) 37; Lay Catholics in Schools 56; Educating Together 24.

29 The Religious Dimension of Education 84, 112.

30 The Religious Dimension of Education 1; Educating in Intercultural Dialogue 56; The Catholic School on the Threshold 14; To Teach as Jesus Did 102.

31 The Religious Dimension of Education 49.

32 Lay Catholics in Schools 12; The Catholic School (1977) 26, 36; The Religious Dimension of Education 108.

33 The Catholic School (1977) 15, 49; The Religious Dimension of Education 34, 51, 52.

34 The Catholic School on the Threshold 14; The Religious Dimension of Education 53, 100; Gravissimum Educationis 8.

35 The Religious Dimension of Education 57.

36 Gravissimum Educationis 5; Lay Catholics in Schools 12.

37 Saint Pope John Paul II, Ad limina visit of bishops from Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin (May 30,1998); Renewing Our Commitment, excerpt; Educating Today and Tomorrow II-1.

Photo credit: Nheyob (Wikimedia Commons)