Growing Forward - Alberta Catholic School Trustees` Association

Growing Forward
2014 Catholic Education
Faith Infused Curriculum
Faith Infused Curriculum
 Must differentiate between faith permeated content (important) and faith
infused curriculum.
 A “spirit of Catholicism" should permeate the entire curriculum.
 Every school, and every educator in the school, ought to be striving "to form
strong and responsible individuals, who are capable of making free and
correct choices," thus preparing young people "to open themselves more
and more to reality, and to form in themselves a clear idea of the meaning
of life" (The Catholic School, 31)
Religion class and theological instruction only a small part of this. The Catholic
school must embody its genuine catholicity even apart from such programs and
projects. It is Catholic because it undertakes to educate the whole child,
addressing the requirements of his or her natural and supernatural perfection.
It is Catholic because it provides an education in the intellectual and moral
virtues. It is Catholic because it prepares for a fully human life at the service of
others and for the life of the world to come. All instruction, therefore, must be
authentically Catholic in content and methodology across the entire program of
Most Rev. Michael Miller
This can be done in two ways:
1. Incorporate in your school a culture or ethos that instills a “love
for wisdom and passion for truth”. Knowledge and understanding
are far more than the accumulation of information. Catholic
schools do far more than convey information to passive students.
They aspire to teach love for wisdom, habituating each student "to
desire learning so much that he or she will delight in becoming a
self-learner.“ We must create critical thinkers who evaluate facts
in light of their faith and values; explore the issues of the day
guided by Catholicism's social doctrine; explore the world of
science and technology with an integration of the ethical and
religions dimensions of life.
2. Faith, Culture and Life
“From the nature of the Catholic school also stems one of the
most significant elements of its educational project: the synthesis
between culture and faith. The endeavor to interweave reason
and faith, which has become the heart of individual subjects,
makes for unity, articulation, and coordination, bringing forth
within what is learned in a school a Christian vision of the world,
of life, of culture, and of history. “
The Catholic School on the Threshold of the Third Millennium
Schools form students within their own culture, teaching them an
appreciation of its positive elements and fostering a more
profound integration of the Gospel in their particular situation.
Faith and culture are intimately related, and students should be
led, in ways suitable to the level of their intellectual development,
to grasp the importance of this relationship.
 It is in this faith – life - culture context that incorporates the integration of
the Gospel, that religious instruction and religious education courses
provide the students with a basis and foundation.
 “A primary way of helping Catholic students become more committed to
their faith is by providing solid religious instruction. To be sure, "education
in the faith is a part of the finality of a Catholic school." For young Catholics,
such instruction embraces both teaching the truths of the faith and
fostering its practice. Still, we must always take special care to avoid the
error that a Catholic school's distinctiveness rests solely on the shoulders of
its religious-education program. Such a position would foster the
misunderstanding that faith and life can be divorced, that religion is a
merely private affair without doctrinal content or moral obligations.”
Challenge #1: Forming teachers to implement a faith infused curriculum
How does teaching “look/sound/feel different” in your school than the public
school across the street? (please – not better or worse –different)
If someone observed a social studies class in a Catholic School and the same
lesson in a Public School, not knowing which school was which, how might they,
by the lesson, identify which school they were in?
What help might a teacher need to take the Alberta curriculum and infuse it
with faith?
Challenge #2: An implementation plan for the division/school for a faith infused
Describe a staff professional development program which would enable and
support staff in implementing a faith infused curriculum (example: grade level,
subject area, whole school).
Who could be used as resources (not necessarily names of people but where
could resources be found)? What structure would this formation have? When
might this take place? How might CLS assist in this? What role, if any, could the
parish play?
Proposed Standards for Faith Infused Curriculum
The curriculum taught in the school reflects the Church’s understanding of the unity of
truth and the harmony between faith and reason.
The school offers a Catholic faith infused curriculum the lessons of which could be
duplicated in a non-Catholic school
The curriculum addresses the spiritual, moral and ethical life of the student, either
explicitly or implicitly.
Teachers are knowledgeable on Church teachings as it applies to the subject areas in
which they teach.
Appropriate funding is allocated and concrete initiatives are in place to assist school in the
theological training of staff.
Teacher meet on a regular basis to discuss methods of infusing faith in their subject areas.
Religious education is a core subject area. Teacher assignments, learner outcomes and
instructional delivery are given the same professional requirements and rigor as all other

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