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Catholic high schools in the United States have been undergoing three major changes: the shift to primarily lay leadership and teachers; the transition to a more consumerist and pluralist culture; and the increasing diversity of students attending Catholic high schools. James Heft argues that to navigate these changes successfully, leaders of Catholic education need to inform lay teachers more thoroughly, conduct a more profound social analysis of the culture, and address the real needs of students. After presenting the history of Catholic schools in the United States and describing the major legal decisions that have influenced their evolution, Heft describes the distinctive and compelling mission of a Catholic high school. Two chapters are devoted to leadership, and other chapters to teachers, students, alternative models of high schools, financing, and the key role of parents, who today may be described as ''post-deferential'' to traditional authorities, including bishops and priests. Written by an award-winning teacher, scholar, and recognized educational leader in Catholic education, Catholic High Schools should be read by everyone interested in religiously- affiliated educational institutions, particularly Catholic education.
The administration of Pre K – 12 Catholic schools becomes more challenging each year. Catholic school leaders not only have the daunting task of leading a successful learning organization, but also to serve as the school community’s spiritual leader and the vigilant steward who keeps the budget balanced, the building clean, and maintaining a healthy enrollment in the school. Each of these tasks can be a full time job, yet the Catholic school principal takes on these tasks day after day, year after year, so that teachers may teach as Jesus did. The goal of this book is to provide both beginning and seasoned Catholic school leaders with some insights that might help them to meet these challenges with a sense of confidence. The words in this text provide research?based approaches for dealing with issues of practice, especially those tasks that are not ordinarily taught in educational leadership programs. This text helps to make sense of the pastoral side of Catholic education, in terms of structures, mission, identity, curriculum, and relationships with the principal’s varied constituencies. It also provides some insights into enrollment management issues, finances and development, and the day in day out care of the organization and its home, the school building. As a Catholic school leader, each must remember that the Catholic school is not just another educational option. The Catholic school has a rich history and an important mission. Historically, education of the young goes back to the monastic and cathedral schools of the Middle Ages. In the United States, Catholic schools developed as a response to anti?Catholic bias that was rampant during the nineteenth century. Catholic schools developed to move their immigrant and first generation American youth from the Catholic ghetto to successful careers and lives in the American mainstream. However, most importantly, Catholic schools have brought Christ to generations of youngsters. It remains the continuing call of the Catholic school to be a center of Evangelization—a place where Gospel values live in the lives of faculty, students and parents. This text attempts to integrate the unique challenges of the instructional leader of the institution with the historical and theological underpinnings of contemporary Catholic education.
How can Catholic leaders effectively train and form members of our institutions in the Gospel values that are the ultimate foundation of Catholic identities? Internationally recognized author, educator, and facilitator Gerald A. Arbuckle argues that it is time to acknowledge that the programs and processes used in the past are inadequate to our postmodern age. The systems previously used to educate the staffs of our hospitals, universities, schools, and other institutions rarely succeed today. Although didactic teaching and discursive learning have their place, they cannot be the primary method for forming identities. Catholic Identity or Identities? will assist a wide range of people- bishops, theologians, pastoral workers, institutional leaders and staffs, and more-in their various ministries. Arbuckle draws on several disciplines, including Scripture, theology, and history, but in particular cultural anthropology, to explain the importance of refounding adult formation for Catholic ministries and the practical ways to achieve it.
Roman Catholicism stands at a crossroads, a classic ''best of times, worst of times'' moment. On the one hand, the Catholic Church remains by far the largest branch of the worldwide Christian family, and is growing at a remarkable clip. Yet the Church has also been rocked by a series of scandals related to the sexual abuse of minors by clergy, and, even more devastating, the cover-up by the Church hierarchy. The decade-long crisis has taken a massive financial toll, but the blow to both the internal morale and the external moral standing of the Church has been even steeper. Today, the Church has enormous residual strength and exciting future prospects, but also faces steep internal and external challenges. The question of ''whither Catholicism'' is of vital public relevance, for believers and non-believers alike. In The Catholic Church: What Everyone Needs to Know, John L. Allen, Jr., one of the world's leading authorities on the Vatican, offers an authoritative and accessible guide to the past, present, and future of the Church. This updated edition includes a new chapter on the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, the election of Pope Francis, and his extraordinary tenure thus far.
Vouchers and charter schools aim to improve education by providing families with more choice in their children's schooling children and by decentralizing provision of educational services. This book reviews the theoretical foundations for vouchers and charter schools and presents new evidence of their effectiveness in academic achievement. It also examines outcomes in family choice, equitable access, racial/ethnic integration, and civic socialization. Recommendations are made for designing voucher and charter policies.

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