Catholic Identity and Religious Education
Catholic schools in the Diocese of Sale, through their defining culture, their curriculum and their classroom-based Religious Education programs, play important formative roles in support of families in the Religious Education and general education of students. They are places where the sacramental and dialogical approaches to the teaching of Religious Education promote a recontextualising school environment, helping students realise the beauty, the power and love of faith in Jesus Christ. In undertaking this work, schools utilise a wide range of learning and teaching approaches, and are aware of and informed by the personal experiences of students.
In all the endeavours of schools across the diocese, and most especially through our Religious Education Curriculum, our key objective is to walk alongside students, listening to their challenges and aspirations, sharing their joy and pain, and helping to create a stillness and an openness in their hearts to the presence and action of God in their lives.
From the very first moment a person enters a school in the Diocese of Sale, we want them to encounter the person, story and message of Jesus Christ. It is through this encounter that a fullness of life is gifted to our school communities and to the individuals that form these communities. We want people in our schools to encounter an authentic Christian message through their lived experience of the school. In this encounter, and through the formal Religious Education programs offered in our schools, school community members are called to witness and contribute to God’s plan of salvation.
Key work in the area of Catholic Identity and Religious Education includes:
· Promotion, continued development and support of the Religious Education Curriculum, To Live in Christ Jesus and its companion resource Sexuality Education in Catholic Schools
· Development of expert teacher practice in the area of Religious Education through the promotion of pedagogical practices that support the development of post critical belief in students
· Offering spiritual and professional formation for principals and leaders of Religious Education
· Providing access for teachers to the Certificate of Religious Education course, enabling teachers and leaders to attain appropriate accreditation to teach in Catholic schools
· Providing access for school leaders to the Master of Education and Theology degree offered within the diocese by the University of Divinity
· Strengthening and enhancing Catholic school identity
· Promoting school and parish links