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Challenges to Faith Formation in Contemporary Catholic Schooling in the Usa: Problem and Response

  • Patricia Helene Earl
Part of the International Handbooks of Religion and Education book series (IHRE, volume 2)

Traditionally, Catholic schools in the USA were staffed exclusively by priests, sisters, and brothers. Today, however, they are predominately staffed by laypersons. This change in teaching staff has inevitably altered, to one degree or another, the essential religious character and culture of Catholic schools. While the religious quite naturally fi lter all of their teachings through their own religious formation and emphasize the mission, spirit, culture, and charism of Catholic education, lay staff often lack the same intensely religious experiences to bring to the teaching/learning environment. In addition to high academic standards, an important attribute of Catholic education is, in fact, the religious, spiritual, values-oriented environment that parents value. To maintain this environment, do the laity need in-service assistance in the overall mission, spirit, culture, and charism of the Catholic schools' religious foundation? To provide this assistance, is there an available model for this formation that could be adapted to this purpose? In the Catholic schools, the principal serves not only as the instructional and managerial leader of the school, but also as its spiritual leader. This chapter examines the challenges and then proposes a model to assist in this faith formation of teachers in contemporary Catholic schooling.

Keywords

Character Education Emergent Literacy Catholic School Teaching Pedagogy Spiritual Leader 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patricia Helene Earl
    • 1
  1. 1.Catholic School Leadership ProgramMarymount UniversityUSA

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