Diocesan Catholic Schools Office excited about future endeavors

FALL RIVER, Mass. — As we celebrate Catholic Schools Week the diocesan Catholic Schools Office would like to share with you the Catholic School Leadership’s vision and aspirations for the Diocese of Fall River’s 22 Catholic schools. We are emboldened by and hope-filled about the future of our Catholic schools, for each of them are deeply animated by Gospel values, academic excellence and innovation. These schools are truly regional treasures continuing to meet the Spiritual and diverse academic needs of the region’s children and the families they serve.

Prior to sharing our Catholic school goals, we want to first update you about some of the major initiatives that are underway. As you may be aware, the diocese’s Task Force on Catholic Education completed its work in the fall of 2016. Since that time, the Catholic Schools Office Leadership Team has spent the past year working to implement many of the Task Force’s recommendations. We would like to highlight just three of these major initiatives:

1. Under the leadership of Bishop Edgar M. da Cunha, S.D.V., we have established the Central Board of Catholic Education. The role of the central board is to support and ensure effective implementation of the Catholic Schools Office’s mission. The board does this by adopting policies and supporting Catholic schools with advancing practices and plans for academic excellence, sustainable financial management, and human resources. To learn more about the Central Board and its members visit our website at catholicschoolsalliance.org.

2. Each school is developing a strategic plan that will set priorities and guide its direction for the next three years in the areas of Catholic mission, academics, finances, enrollment/marketing, capital improvements, and governance. As part of the planning process each school is also going through an in-depth financial review. The CSO Team is visiting each school and meeting with representatives from all of the key stakeholder groups to learn from them the school’s strengths and challenges and how we can partner with them to advance the school’s mission.

3. Through the generosity of a private donor and public e-rate funding the CSO has invested more than $800,000 to improve the Wi-Fi infrastructure in 20 of our schools. The installation of new equipment over the next few months will enable schools to integrate more technology into their curriculum and prepare students for college and careers in an ever increasingly technology dependent world.

Looking to the future, the CSO has adopted the following four major diocesan-wide goals to be achieved by the start of school year 2020-2021:

1. Increase academic growth across all academic disciplines by five percent;

2. Increase enrollment by three percent;

3 Stabilize school finances;

4. Increase church attendance in school parishes.

Throughout the next four months we will share what is specifically being done to address each of these goals on our website. We invite you to visit www.CatholicSchoolsAlliance.org each month to learn about the exciting new projects and progress we are making. 

We are enormously grateful to Bishop da Cunha, the Central Board of Catholic Education members, school pastors, administrators, teachers, staff, volunteers, and donors for their extraordinary commitment and support. We are especially thankful for our parents, for their support of our Catholic schools, and for the trust they have placed in our schools to provide their child with an excellent academic program and to assist them with deepening their personal faith.

© 2020 The Anchor  †  887 Highland Avenue  †  Fall River, Massachusetts 02720