Catholic School Matters
March 22, 2021
Josh Hale, the President/CEO of the Big Shoulders Fund, joins me on the Catholic School Matters podcast this week to discuss the great work of the organization supporting Chicago Catholic schools. The Big Shoulders has raised over $450 million for Catholic schools, giving away approximately $30 million per year. The conversation and our look at Big Shoulders builds on last week’s focus on the new research project on urban Catholic schools.
With so many dioceses strapped for cash, organizations like Big Shoulders have picked up the slack and have provided a model for so many other school foundations. Certainly their efforts have been successful in providing a way for people to give money and support Catholic schools. Their work began with scholarships to needy students, expanded to school aid, and has now spread to innovative programs.
It’s interesting to note that Big Shoulders has begun to get involved in school governance and has pledged money if they have a voice in selecting the school leaders. This has involved a new paradigm for urban Catholic elementary schools as the Archdiocese of Chicago has developed more clusters of parishes & schools and has moved away from the one pastor-one parish-one Catholic school model. More information here.
Why is this so important? If we want to be a mission-driven school system whose purpose is to serve the world (not just serve those who can afford our tuition) we need to look at innovations which strengthen our mission. Governance is a great place to start.
Come for the talk on governance and fund-raising, stay for conversation about Wyoming summer camps and replacing windows.
Here’s background on Big Shoulders, here’s an article announcing their efforts to bridge the digital divide, and another their expansion to Gary, Indiana, and another recent announcement. I referenced this Crux article on co-responsibility as well as the Boston College/NCEA research study.
Want to keep up with the conversations surrounding Catholic education? Set up your own Google Alert, subscribe to this newsletter by clicking "follow," subscribe to the Catholic Schools Daily, or subscribe to the Catholic School Matters podcast.
Dr. Tim Uhl
Catholic School Links
Teaching & Learning
Catholic School Matters podcast
Check out the past episodes from this season:
- Big Shoulders Fund with President/CEO Josh Hale
- Urban Catholic School Research with Dr. Charles Cownie, Dr. Andrew Miller, and Annie Smith
- Catholic Social Teaching with Mark Shea
- Part One, Fratelli Tutti, with Dr. Ann Garrido; Part Two, Fratelli Tutti, with Fr. Joe Corpora; Part Three, Fratelli Tutti, with Dr. Carmen Nanko-Fernández; Part Four, Fratelli Tutti, with Dr. Leonard DeLorenzo;
- Part Five, Fratelli Tutti, With Dr. Katherine Greiner
- 12 Christmas podcasts: Michael Deegan of the Archdiocese of NY, Nicole Garnett of Notre Dame law school on religious charters, Maka Black Elk on truth & healing, Dr. Jeannine Hill Fletcher on The Sin of White Supremacy, Dr Leslie Lipovski from the Diocese of Arlington & St. Isidore Virtual Catholic School, Mary Flock of the Diocese of Orange & St. Polycarp Virtual Catholic School, Bruce Davis of Catholic Virtual, Jeff Hausman of AVLI, Kyle Pietrantonio of DIA Schools, Sr. Angela Ann Zukowski of VLCFF, Frankie Jones of ACE, and Mike Derrick of San Diego Cristo Rey HS.
- Thought Leaders: Dave Stuart, Jr., George Couros, Dr. Christian Dallavis from Partnership Schools; Dr. Debbie Sullivan & FADICA reports;
- Pandemic-focused podcasts: Fr. Eric Ramirez, SJ from Regis Jesuit HS; John Galvan from the Diocese of San Diego; Elizabeth Goettl, CEO, Cristo Rey Network; Dr. Tim McNiff of Engineering Tomorrow.; Dr. Brandi Odom Lucas of Verbum Dei (Cristo Rey) HS; Jenny Oliver, the principal of St. Joe's in Auburn, CA; Br. John Montgomery, FSC, the principal of Cathedral High in Los Angeles; Leanne Geise, president of Dominican High in Wisconsin; August 19, 2020 Bea Kaleva (MT attorney) on COVID-related legal issues;
- August 12, 2020 Dr. Daryl Hagan of the Diocese of Evansville on reopening
What I'm Reading
The Last 5 Books:
- Culture Care: Reconnecting with Beauty for Our Common Life (2017) by Makoto Fujimura
The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration (2013) by Isabel Wilkerson
I Came as a Shadow: An Autobiography (2020) by John Thompson
One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America (2015) by Kevin M. Kruse
The Surprising Gift of Doubt: Use Uncertainty to Become the Exceptional Leader You Are Meant to Be (2021) by Marc A. Pitman
Click this link for a full list of my professional reading
Past Issues of Catholic School Matters
Mar 15, 2021 "Researching Urban Catholic Schools"
Mar 8, 2021 "Catholic Social Teaching"
Mar 1, 2021 "Collective Conscience"
Feb 22, 2021 "Pope Francis & the Politics We Need"
Feb 15, 2021 "Fraternity of All"
Feb 8, 2021 "Mercy"
Feb 1, 2021 "Fratelli Tutti"
For previous newsletters, click this link
A couple of years ago I set out to write a book which would explore the challenges of Catholic school leadership. My premise that there are no easy answers and that we have to learn from our (and other's) mistakes in order to form a mindset appropriate for orchestrating conflict proved prescient as we all faced completely new and unexpected challenges in 2020. The book,Orchestrating Conflict: Case Studies in Catholic Leadership is now available on Amazon or on the Barnes & Noble site in print or e-book formats. The book explores issues in Catholic school leadership and the tensions between building community and following Church policies and introduces deliberate practice as a method for leadership formation.