As this school year comes to a close, all of our schools are showcasing the great work, inventive creativity and high energy that always characterize our Catholic schools.
We held both our diocesan-wide art festival and the diocesan track meet in which our students celebrate their artistic and athletic talents. Individual schools have honored Our Blessed Mother with May Crownings and celebrated spring First Communions.
The list of year-end school activities also includes hosting everything from fun runs, spring concerts and theatrical productions to field trips, sports breakfasts and academic festivals.
There have also been special Masses, grandparent lunches, field days, teacher appreciation celebrations and, of course, our graduations.
Our school parents and principals are forming transition teams to address the new reality of one school serving many parishes. Teams of parents and faculty are planning events for students and families to become comfortable and secure in their new school environment.
Some have held retreat days and field days to integrate students, and some have had evening pot luck suppers or barbeques where parents and children can meet each other. Our hope is that, by joining together, all families will bring with them their gifts, talents and personalities to enrich and grow their new school communities.
The good news is that Catholic education in the Diocese of Buffalo continues to grow with new programs. The STREAM (Science, Technology, Religion, Engineering, Art and Mathematics) education initiative is a diocesan investment to support the future of Catholic education and will be implemented throughout our elementary schools over the next two years.
The diocese will design, fund and direct STREAM beginning with a pilot program of 10 schools in the fall of 2014. All schools will have the opportunity to implement STREAM Academy into their programming.
We have encouraged and provided ways to enhance the involvement and participation of our parents in the governance of our schools. In the end, we can talk about programs, systems and organizations, but it's the picture of children nurtured in the Catholic faith, excited about making new friends and blending their spirits to create new school communities that proclaim the good news about our schools.