Office for Schools

Diocese of San Diego – November/December


Dear Catholic School Friends,

Advent is a time of waiting. Interestingly, the typically busy Christmastime does not produce a particularly strong market for “waiting” as part of its seasonal hope! In our world, there is no need to wait. Whatever we need is at our fingertips whenever we need it through our mobile devices. This sign of our times has incredible educational upside. Not only can my 4-year old navigate my iPad as well I can to get real-time feedback with her learning apps, but I am also embarrassed to admit that she has come to imitate me whenever we’re in the car, “This traffic light is taking FOREVER!” Yes, the age of instant results can have its downside.

In the spiritual life, waiting is a two-way street. We are afforded a wonderful opportunity this Advent as we wait for the birth of Jesus, who came to show us the face of God the Father’s love for us. We wait for him to be born again in our hearts, our classrooms, our homes, our parish communities, and in the whole world. What remains fortunate for us is the patience and ever-presence of our loving God even in our time of waiting. We are made in the image of a God who equally waits for us. God waits for our “yes” to create the conditions for love to occur. Like Mary, may our response be echoed, “I am the Lord’s servant; may it be done to me as you have said.”

However the Christ-child is born again into your hearts this Christmas, may you remain blessed, and know that our prayers remain with you.

Merry Christmas!

In Mission,
John & the OFS Team

Did you know...

  • Saint John's School in Encinitas received the "School of the Month" award from Today's Catholic Teacher magazine? See the article below.
  • We had over 20 teachers attend our first Learning Support Teacher meeting facilitated by Julie Foster from St. Francis? Our next meeting is scheduled for January 14 (2:00-4:00) at the Pastoral Center. Information will be sent out after Christmas break. All are welcome!
  • St. Michael's in Poway is working toward becoming a Visible Learning School? Mrs. Mock presented an overview of this at a recent Principals' meeting. See resources in our Google Drive.
  • Over 20 of our diocesan educators attended the latest Science and Faith Alliance meeting? Read about this organization that provides PD to assist with incorporating our faith into the NGSS.

Articles/Resources to check out in our Google Drive:

Celebrating Our Catholic Schools

St. John's Encinitas Earns National Recognition!

Our Lady of the Sacred Heart and USD

This past week USD professor Odesma Dalrymple conducted a STEAM teacher training for St. Rita's, Holy Family, and OLSH to build a foundation of engineering for these K-8 Educators to share with their students. Engineering seeks to find answers to real life problems and its never too early for children to learn to think like an engineer. In fact, when Jesus speaks to us in the Beatitudes, for example, he invites us to help solve our world's problems, and some might argue he invites us to think like engineers!

The latest collaboration between the nationally recognized Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering and our inner city Catholic Schools reflects the commitment that USD has to form "globally competent, ethical leaders committed to the common good and empowered to engage a diverse and changing world." This Fall an USD Engineering 101 class taught by Jason Partin, inventor, innovator, and USD adjunct professor, has been collaborating with middle school students at OLSH to co-develop robotic car kits in order to facilitate 21st Century skills that are transferrable to solving our future's problems, yet affordable for every child, in an effort to foster Peace & Justice through equitable education. For more information or to join in our middle school robot and Arduino project that meets every Tuesday, contact Christina Alton,

St. Augustine Breaks Ground on New Gymnasium!

We have many PD opportunities - most are free and not during school hours!

Diocese of San Diego Workshops - Dr. John Franey

Dr. John Franey, CEO and founder of Developing Difference Makers and lead researcher for our Diocesan CEPAL study, will be offering hands-on workshops for our Diocesan teachers and administrators. Topics include, but are not limited to the following: Curriculum Mapping, NGSS, Standards-Based Reporting, Data Analysis, and Technology Integration. Check out the Workshop Menu below and register for workshops by clicking on the Registration link.

Please email Dr. John Franey with any questions you may have:

Workshop Menu


Developing Difference Makers

Other Important News

USD Needs Your Input!

The University of San Diego, School of Leadership and Education Sciences (SOLES) is currently seeking interest in a parent-focused speaker series for school communities in San Diego County. Since the education of a child is done through the collaborative efforts of parents and educators, this series is designed for both parents and educators.

We are hoping that you will participate in this survey to determine your interest in a parent-focused speaker series to serve the needs of your school community.

This is an interest only survey. Participation in this survey does not imply commitment to the speaker series.

In order to have a voice in this important conversation, please respond to this survey by December 16.

Click HERE to participate.


Updates Posted for the SD Science Fair!

NCEA - Our Teachers and Administrators are Hosting!

Join us for NCEA 2016 in San Diego!

Shared Office for Schools Google Drive

In this Google Drive you will find resources for our educators and principals. Please send your favorite resources to and I will add them to our Drive. Thank you!

Diocesan Prayer

Lord, Jesus,

through the intercession of our patron saints,

San Diego and Our Lady of Refuge,

we beg you for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit

upon all of us called to be your disciples

and members of your Church.

Bless us to be obedient servants,

as you were obedient

in loving response to the Father’s love,

and to love one another

as you have first loved us.

Bless us with happy marriages and holy families,

with bishops, religious, deacons and priests

to image your presence among us,

and with dedicated lay people,

both married and single,

to be signs of your love in the world.

Help us to embrace

the mission you have entrusted to us,

in lives of fidelity, holiness and compassion.

San Diego, pray for us.

Our Lady of Refuge, pray for us.