What would you do if an entire class of students suddenly couldn’t see the whiteboard? You’d probably move away from a PowerPoint slideshow and incorporate different teaching methods. What if your entire PE class suddenly couldn’t walk? You’d stop requiring a mile run and work on different skills.
Many of our schools are seeing increasing numbers of students affected by anxiety and other mental health issues. Many of those schools are struggling with how to deal with this new normal. Fortunately, the Greeley Center at Loyola-Chicago is offering a conference next month to address mental wellness of our students.
This year’s Mustard Seed Project October 3-5 in Chicago is designed to surface these issues, present best practices and frameworks for addressing the issues, and to offer work time for school leaders (and school teams) to work toward solutions.
The Mustard Seed Project is based on the Gospel parable of the mustard seed—from the smallest of seeds can come the largest of trees. Designed to serve Catholic schools seeking to serve students with disabilities, this year’s conference has put the focus on mental health.
This week’s podcast includes interviews with Dr. Mike Boyle, the Greeley Center director, and two of its presenters. Curtis Klesinger, the executive director of the Mother Teresa Academy in Regina, Saskatchewan, will lead a skill-building session and discuss how his Nativity School has a tiered intervention system. Keith Crowley, the principal of St. John’s Prep in Danvers, Massachusetts, discusses the holistic approach of their all-boys Xaverian high school and their organizational supports for student mental health. It’s a great episode focusing on cutting edge innovation in Catholic schools.
For further reading on mental health and SEL (Socio-Emotional Learning):
- A great blog entitled “Taking Care of Our Kids“
- A NY Times opinion piece entitled “We have ruined childhood“
- A great Mind/Shift article on student transitions
- A blog post on the value of Positive Behavior
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Welcome back to another season of Catholic School Matters. This week’s newsletter focuses on the Mustard Seed Project (Oct 7-9) in Chicago, the great annual conference put on by the Greeley Center of Loyola-Chicago. This year’s conference focuses on the mental health of our students. The Top 5 articles this week:
- The first article in the American Catholic news section spotlights the great work being done at ACE at Notre Dame as seen through the eyes of Dr. Bill Mattison from the program. He talks about the importance of formation of our leaders, which we often overlook in favor of formation of our students.
- The second article features a great school leader at a fantastic school—Bryan Carter from Gesu School in Philadelphia. The article has a school choice bent but it’s a insightful celebration of what makes the school succeed.
- In the leadership section, I present three great articles on feedback. While they are all great, the article on how to ask for feedback is probably the one which stuck with me the longest. It’s an often overlooked skill.
- In the Teaching & Learning section, the first article about how learning is supposed to feel uncomfortable is timely and insightful. Like our students, we often believe we should be able to to pick up and master new skills without any problems. But…c’mon!
- The next article in that section on the rise of the haphazard self is great reading for anyone feeling disjointed and adrift at times. In other words, all of us!
Have a great week! I’ll be back next week with a spotlight on the Catholic schools which opened this fall.
Wednesday’s Catholic School Matters Radio Hour podcast features three great guests from the upcoming Mustard Seed project in Chicago October 7-9th. This week’s podcast includes interviews with Dr. Mike Boyle, the Greeley Center director, and two of its presenters. Curtis Klesinger, the executive director of the Mother Teresa Academy in Regina, Saskatewan, will lead a skill-building session and discuss how his Nativity School has a tiered intervention system. Keith Crowley, the principal of St. John’s Prep in Danvers, Massachusetts, discusses the holistic approach of their all-boys Xaverian high school and their organizational supports for student mental health. It’s a great episode focusing on cutting edge innovation in Catholic schools.