New Direction in Religious Education
Two Religious Education consultants, one for the elementary level and one for the secondary level, work with schools to ensure that the Religious Education programs of study are implemented in accordance with the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), the Alberta Catholic Bishops and Alberta Education. The Religious Education consultants work in collaboration with all district curriculum staff to permeate the Catholic faith into curriculum, instruction, and staff development.
Some of the duties of these consultants include:
- Providing support to teachers and administrators in the delivery of the Religious Education programs of study by:
- Researching, developing, and implementing plans for curriculum and program implementation that include resources and professional development for teachers
- Providing assistance in the cross-curricular integration of Religious Education outcomes into other subject areas
- Researching and recommending best practices re: curriculum and instruction in Religious Education
- Preparing summary reports for improving and enhancing the Religious Education curriculum
- Communicating learner outcomes of Programs of Study to stakeholders
- At the elementary level - providing assistance and support for celebrations, prayer services and days of reflection for staff and students; at the secondary level schools are provided with chaplains to assist in this regardAssisting in district events such as the School Opening Mass and Faith Development DayParticipating in Staff Development Initiatives
- Collaborating with other District consultants in support of District priorities Supporting schools in the parish-home-school relationship and sacramental preparation
- Liaising with organizations within the community, the Edmonton Catholic Archdiocese and with out-of-District committees
- Supporting staff faith development through encouraging participation in courses and workshops offered through Newman College, St. Joseph's College, the Archdiocese of Edmonton and other similar opportunities
The Religious Education Curriculum- Grades 1-12
The Religious Education resources for grades 1 to 8 are being re-written over the next few years. The grade 1 program will be implemented during the 2015-2016 school year. It is expected that Grades 2 and 3 will be implemented during the 2016-2017 school year and the rest will follow over the next few years. These resources are being developed by educators from Alberta, Ontario and Saskatchewan. Revisions to the grade 9 and Kindergarten programs will also be explored soon.
The Religious Education courses for High School are Religious Studies 15, 25, and 35 and Religions of the World 35. Like the K to 9 resources, these originate under the umbrella of the CCCB and are approved for use by the Catholic Bishops of Alberta. We have made changes to study World Religions in a thematic approach at each grade level. This allows schools to offer the Religions of the World 35 course without the concern of overlap between this course and Religious Studies 15, 25 and 35.
The textbook resource for each course are as follows, although teachers are encouraged to access a wide variety of additional supplementary materials such as online and digital resources to assist the students to achieve the outcomes of the courses:
- Religious Studies 15 – Christ and Culture
- Religious Studies 25 – either Encountering Jesus in the New Testament or Jesus Christ: God's Love Made Visible or Jesus Christ: God's Revelation to the World
- Religious Studies 35 – In Search of the Good
- Religions of the World 35 – World Religions: A Canadian Catholic Perspective
- Father Glenn McDonald and Father Julian Bilyj are the District Chaplains serving the needs of our students and staff.
- Father Glenn McDonald and secondary religious education consultant will work closely with our Junior and Senior High School Chaplains in the District.
- Father Julian Bilyj will primarily be involved at the Elementary level and with our Ukrainian Bilingual schools.
- An additional part-time Religious Education Consultant (Theological) will liaise with Newman Theological College and programs offered to administrators and staff.
To learn more about our religious education-theological leadership in the District, visit /page/1757/religious-services