From Commission Co-Chairs: John McMahon and Karen Rauenhorst

On May 16, 2011, the Catholic Schools Commission reviewed input from 3 of the Commission’s 4 committees. Below is a summary of discussion at this meeting.

I. COMMISSION OVERALL

Input:

  1. Web surveys—A web survey related to finance ran from April 29 to May 12. 392 pastors, elementary and secondary school principals/presidents, parish business administrators, and parish finance council members participated in this first survey. A web survey related to school marketing ran from May 12 through May 23. 66 elementary and secondary school principals/presidents, marketing directors and other marketing staff and volunteers participated in this survey. A parent survey aimed at perceptions of Catholic schools and school choice decision-making launched on May 25. The survey is intended for prospective school parents, current Catholic school parents, and parents of school age children not enrolled in Catholic school. As of May 31, nearly 700 parents have participated in the survey. We’ll continue to push for parent participation for the next several weeks during this busy time of year. The information being gathered is useful not only for the work of the Catholic Schools Commission but also the soon-to-be-named Archdiocesan Catholic Schools Advisory Council and the Archdiocese’s Office of Catholic Schools going forward.
  2. Information collected via comments made to cscommission@archspm.org. We have received many very insightful and useful comments and suggestions that we are incorporating into the Commission’s work. We encourage all school stakeholders to share their comments at cscommission@archspm.org before June 3.

II. ADVANCEMENT COMMITTEE

  1. Branding firm is working to develop an archetype around which a branding message will be built.
  2. The Advancement Committee will be the final committee to develop recommendations; branding initiative will continue into the 2011-2012 school year. The above-mentioned parent survey will provide additional insight as this work continues.

III. EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE COMMITTEE

  1. Commission approved a recommendation for establishing benchmarks for addressing school vitality and viability for all Catholic schools to support a culture of continuous improvement and ongoing renewal within the schools.
  2. Commission approved a recommendation regarding the enhancement, formalization and support of principal recruitment, selection, development and assessment.

IV. FUNDING MODELS COMMITTEE

  1. Commission approved 5 recommendations related to standardization of financial reporting, revisions to archdiocesan financial aid distribution, all parishes’ support of Catholic schools, enrollment guidelines related to financial viability and revenue enhancement and cost reduction opportunities.

V. GOVERNANCE COMMITTEE

  1. Commission approved a recommendation related to clarification of roles and responsibilities for the parties involved in the governance of consolidated schools in order to enhance the schools’ capabilities and long-term viability.

We continue to ask for input and participation in this important process. You may email your comments, concerns or questions before June 3 to cscommission@archspm.org.