1976: United States Catholic Conference
Link to the Document To Teach Them
Gwen Byrd, Executive Director for Catholic Education/Superintendent for the Archdiocese of Mobile, one of the longest-serving Catholic school superintendents, explores the impact of this follow up from the US Bishops.
STUDY GUIDE & DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
To Teach Them (US Bishops, 1976)
- Reading Questions
- How many Catholic youth are enrolled in formal religious programs? In schools? How many are not enrolled? How do those numbers compare with the present day?
- In the fourth paragraph, the document points to reasons why some children are not enrolled. What are those reasons?
- In the second section, the document refers to the threefold purpose of Catholic education as outlined in To Teach As Jesus Did. What are the three purposes?
- In the same paragraph, the document points to teacher formation as crucial to Catholic schools. On the next page, the document returns to this theme. Why is teacher selection, evaluation/motivation, and formation so important?
- The Bishops offer 5 reasons why they support Catholic schools.
- The Bishops discuss the “concerted focus” of schools and point to evidence of lay collaboration. Give a few examples.
- In this section, the Bishops point out the changing role of administrators–many of whom are staffed by lay people. How has the role of the administrator changed?
- Later the in section, the Bishops spotlight the efforts of Catholic schools to educate the Black community. Why is this so important?
- In Section 4, the Bishops contextualize the struggle for governmental support to the United States (as opposed to the entire world). What is their central argument?
- Reflection/Discussion Questions
- How collaborative is your school community? Are parents active stakeholders? Past parents? Students? Teachers?
- How frequently does your school talk about racism?
- Do you believe Catholic schools should serve primarily Catholic students? Or are they instruments of evangelization?
- In Section 3 under the “Pastors and the Community” section, the Bishops argue that Catholic schools serve the entire diocese. Do you believe your school(s) serve the entire diocese?
- List 3-4 quotes that you could pull out from this document to use in your own communication.