Superintendent's Message - May 2022
And in the journey of life, let us allow ourselves to be taken by the hand. Mothers take their children by the hand and lovingly introduce them to life... We need to learn from mothers that heroism is shown in self-giving, strength in compassion, wisdom in meekness. (Pope Francis, Homily, 01/01/2019)
In our Catholic faith, Mary, the Mother of God, plays a central role for us. Through her “yes” to God, salvation was born into this world in the person of Jesus. We begin our calendar year with the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, and have many other special days to honour her. The month of May is one in which our eyes are turned toward our Holy Mother, so it is only fitting that we also celebrate Mother’s Day this month. Pope Francis has given us a beautiful picture of the importance of those who fill the role of mother for our children. Love, heroism, compassion, wisdom; these are the gifts we receive from Mary, and from those who fill this sacred role in our lives!
As the 2021-2022 school year is fast coming to a close, our Division is well into planning for the upcoming school year. Our Board of Trustees has approved our Division Plan for Continuous Growth 2020-2023 (Year 3), and our schools will now spend the month of May aligning their School Plans for Continuous Growth with our Division’s work.
In Edmonton Catholic Schools, we believe that each person is created in the image and likeness of God and in the goodness, dignity and worth of each person. We honour the dignity of each person by treating one another with empathy, compassion, and respect. Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Anti-Racism (EDIAR) are guiding values consistent with Catholic Social Teaching, reaffirming dignity at every level. In the spring of 2021, our Division began a project with Norquest’s Colbourne Institute for Inclusive Leadership and MNP to determine our strengths and opportunities for growth in furthering the work of EDIAR from a Catholic worldview in our Division through a formal strategic plan. Our new EDIAR strategic plan outlines the strategic priorities and key strategies identified through surveys and focus groups and explores possible actions that will shape the way in which EDIAR values are embedded in the ongoing work of the Division. You can read the strategic plan and explore more about EDIAR in ECSD by clicking here.
This year, we celebrate Catholic Education Week from May 23-27. It is an excellent opportunity to celebrate and give thanks for the gift of publicly funded Catholic education that we are blessed with in Alberta. The cornerstones of our Catholic educational community are found in the relationship between the home, the school, and the parish as we lead our students into a deeper relationship with Jesus. Watch our Division social media to see examples of the great things that happen in our schools as #ECSDfaithinspires!
As we continue to celebrate the season of Easter, I leave you with a thought from our Holy Father: “The Easter joy is not to be kept to oneself. The joy of Christ is strengthened by giving it, it multiplies sharing it. If we open ourselves and carry the Gospel, our hearts will open and overcome fear.” (Pope Francis, Twitter, 04/18/2022)
Yours in Christ,
Robert Martin Chief Superintendent