Session 5: Formation of Staff to Support a Catholic Perspective

Report
QCEC Colloquium 12-13 June 2014
Rev Dr Kevin Lenehan
Catholic Theological College, University of Divinity
Professional
Learning
Conversations:
•relevant evidence
•inquiry habit of
mind
•knowledge and
skills
•relationships of
respect and
challenge


Do you consider yourself to have
STRONG/AVERAGE/NO faith in Christ?
Primary school teachers (n=1473)
 48.2% strong faith in Christ
 45.4% average faith in Christ
 3.3% no faith in Christ

Secondary school teachers (n=917)
 37.9 % strong faith in Christ
 38.3% average faith in Christ
 12.1% no faith in Christ
Source: CECV & KU
Leuven, 2010, 2012

Do you support the Catholic faith?
Primary
Students
Adults
Full support
Support but critical
Neither positive nor
negative
Dislike Catholic
faith
(n=5492)
(n=4203)
42.1%
38.8%
31.2%
61.3%
12.4%
5.7%
1.6%
0.4%

Do you support the Catholic faith?
Secondary
Students
Adults
Full support
Support but critical
Neither positive nor
negative
Dislike Catholic
faith
(n=5013)
(n=1788)
18.8%
42.3%
28.5%
57.8%
27.5%
11.7%
5.3%
0.8%

Do you support the Catholic identity of
schools?
Primary
Students
Adults
Strong support
Support
It’s ok
Don’t care
(n=5235)
(n=4112)
22.0%
41.9%
21.7%
5.6%
33.6%
52.5%
9.1%
1.4%

Do you support the Catholic identity of
schools?
Secondary
Students
Adults
Strong support
Support
It’s ok
Don’t care
(n=4908)
(n=1711)
7.7%
30.7%
30.6%
21.4%
29.7%
48.8%
13.5%
4.2%
How should schools respond to the
increasing diversity and plurality of their
communities?
Responses by adults (teachers, parents, leaders):




Institutional secularisation
Reconfessionalisation
Recontextualisation
Christian Values Education
10%
23%
40%
22%
Spirit Matters: How
Making Sense of Life
Affects Wellbeing.
Peter Kaldor, Philip
Hughes and Alan
Black. Melbourne:
Mosaic Press, 2010.

“For [the mostly secular] religion and spirituality
are not so much rejected as ignored. Life is lived
in the present, in the world of the here and
now... If religion and spirituality is there at all, it
is there in the background...

“What is clear is that few Australians with
little religion or spirituality have totally and
explicitly rejected it. The major problem is
not necessarily a philosophical one…[rather]
the day-to-day world does not require that
they engage with religion or spirituality.
They are ‘practical’ secularists, rather than
ideological secular.”
Spirit Matters, 57
Principles of Catholic Social Teaching
 the dignity of the human person
 the common good of persons
 the universal destination of goods
 the principle of subsidiarity
 participation
 solidarity
 social values: truth, liberty, justice
 the way of love

the common good
“the sum total of social conditions which
allow people, either as groups or as
individuals, to reach their fulfilment fully
and more easily”
GS 26; CCC 1905-1912; CSDC 164.

CSDC 165. .. No expression of social life —
from the family to intermediate social
groups, associations, enterprises of an
economic nature, cities, regions, states, up to
the community of peoples and nations — can
escape the issue of its own common good, in
that this is a constitutive element of its
significance and the authentic reason for its
very existence.
participation
“a series of activities by means of which
the citizen… contributes to the cultural,
economic, political and social life of the
community…. Participation is a duty to be
fulfilled consciously by all, with responsibility
and with a view to the common good.”

CCC 1913-1914; CSDC 189-191; GS 75

CSDC 191:“The overcoming of cultural,
juridical and social obstacles that often
constitute real barriers to the shared
participation of citizens in the destiny of their
communities calls for work in the areas of
education and information.”

“Catholic schools are at
one and the same time
places of evangelization,
well-rounded education,
inculturation and
initiation to the dialogue
of life among young
people of different
religions and social
backgrounds.”
John Paul II, Ecclesia in Africa, n. 102, cited in
Educating to Intercultural Dialogue, n.17.

“… the prime
responsibility for
creating this unique
Christian school
climate rests with the
teachers, as individuals
and as a community.”
The Religious Dimension of the Catholic
School, n.26
How do the principles of the common good and
participation relate to the mission of our school?
 How can staff formation assist to increase
participation of staff in the mission of the school?


QCEC Policy, Formation of Staff Members in
Catholic Schools in Queensland (2010)
 2.5 Continuing professional development includes
both professional and religious formation
Student
Learning
Focus
Individual
and Team
Ongoing
and
Support
Embedded
in Practice
Effective
Professional
Development
Research
Based
Evidence
and Data
Collaborative

Professional learning
 is informed by principles of adult learning
 uses research on effective learning and teaching
 links pedagogy and discipline content
 content is aligned with actual curriculum standards
 is given sufficient time, support and resources to
master new pedagogy and integrate into practice
 is collaborative, with reflection and feedback
 is intellectually engaging and recognizes the
complexity of learning


professional formation for presenting the
Catholic worldview in a post-critical, inquirybased, pluralistic learning environment
3-fold approach
 apologetic in face of opposition/contradiction
 hermeneutic in face of misunderstanding
 dialogue in face of indifference or other
worldviews
apologetic
in face of
opposition/contradiction
EXPLAIN
hermeneutic
in face of
misunderstanding
INTERPRET
dialogue
in face of
indifference or
other worldviews
ENGAGE
principles of religious freedom
1)
o
o
o
o
o
right to religious liberty based in dignity of
person
truth communicates by its own power, not by
coercion
to seek and assent to truth is an act of human
freedom and conscious
is aided by teaching and dialogue with others
faith is the free act of the whole human person
2.
dimensions of conversion (Lonergan)
 intellectual
 moral
 religious
3.
the skills of discernment – personal and
communal






.
Be still
Be silent
Be aware
Be centred on Jesus
Be patient
Be grateful





1. Become aware of God’s presence
2. Review the day with gratitude
3. Pay attention to your emotions
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray
from it.
5. Look toward tomorrow

Ron Ritchhart (2002), 8 factors affecting
classroom/school culture








expectations
time allocation
modelling
routines
opportunities
relationships
physical environment
language and conversation

characteristics of effective routines:
 explicit
 instrumental
 used over and over
 across a variety of contexts
 individual and group practices

Roles within the teaching staff
 Witness
▪ Catholic tradition is ‘confessionally constitutive’ for
identity of religious educator
 Moderator
▪ Religious educator, without compromising their own
confessional identity, moderates the interaction of
student’s pluralised worldviews
 Specialist
▪ able to inform learning experiences with expert
knowledge and sound pedagogical approaches to the
content of Christian revelation

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