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Catholic Schools Are Thinking Smarter

By Carol Kostyniak
Secretary for Catholic Education
Diocese of Buffalo

What is the future of Catholic elementary schools in the Diocese of Buffalo? Are Catholic elementary schools sustainable? What will Catholic schools look like in the year 2015? How do we keep our strong schools strong? How do we assist those schools that are struggling?

Our Lady of Black Rock School Begins Year with Parade

Instead of hitting the books, students at Our Lady of Black Rock School in Buffalo hit the streets. The students kicked off the first day of class today with a parade around the neighborhood. New principal Martha Eadie wanted the first day of school to be full of fun festivities to introduce over 20 new students and their families to current students and staff, commencing the school year with a positive and unified spirit.

“We have such a big influx of new students, we have multicultural students, students with English as a second language. I thought it would be a good way to invite the families in on the first day, have that atmosphere of a community, and in a very unconventional way, welcome in the new year,” Mrs. Eadie said.

Picture Perfect Start to School Year

With cameras in hand, parents came to St. Andrew’s Country Day School today (Sept. 7) as the Kenmore elementary school opened its doors for another year of reading, ’riting and ’rithmatic. While the poparazzi and mamarazzi snapped photos, Principal Dennis Welka and St. Andrew’s pastor, Msgr. Richard Siepka, welcomed the new and returning students.

Parents admitted to be nervous and anxious for their kids, especially those starting kindergarten. Many are already familiar with the school from having attended pre-K there, so aside from attending a full five days a week, it’s not too big a change for the wee ones.  “I like the small atmosphere. I like the Catholic education. And he just enjoys being here. That helps it,” said Lucia Gullo, mother of 5-year-old Antonio.

Christ the King Seminary to pilot distance learning at Canisius, St. Bonaventure

Christ the King Seminary will be piloting a Distance Learning program for two of its Continuing Education classes during the Fall 2010 semester. The new program is intended to provide more options to help students access the Seminary’s courses in the manner most convenient to their lifestyle and needs. Students who register to take either “Theology of God” (Tuesdays, 7-9 p.m. beginning September 14) or “The Gospels” (Thursdays, 7-9 p.m. beginning September 16) will be given the option of taking the class at the Seminary’s East Aurora campus or taking it via video-conferencing technology at Canisius College or St. Bonaventure University.

Catholic School Teachers Go Back to School

With the start of the new school year less than two weeks away, Catholic elementary school teachers are not only busy preparing their classrooms, they are engaged in professional development as well.

During the week of August 17, the diocesan Department of Catholic Schools hosted a number of workshops, ranging from brain-based learning to using learning centers in the classroom.

The sessions included:  Brain Based Learning: Procedures and strategies to address all learners; Using Learning Centers in the Primary Classroom; a Practical Guide to Design and Manage Learning Centers.

Autistic Services, Inc. Returns to ArtSpace for 2010

(BUFFALO, NEW YORK) The return of Autistic Services to ArtSpace means more than 30 artists from their Arts Program will be highlighted.  This successful program allows the participants of Autistic Services Inc. to communicate through many different art media thus showing their understanding of composition, color theory and the use of space. “Many people with Autism are challenged by living in our mainstream society. But that doesn’t mean they cannot find other ways of communicating with the public. Art is a sophisticated way of doing that,” says Veronica Federiconi, Executive Director of Autistic Services Inc.

ArtSpace will once again welcome the show which will be exhibited from August 6 to August 28.  The exhibit opens with a reception on Friday, August 6, 2010 from 6PM until 9PM. ArtSpace located at 1219 Main Street Buffalo, NY.