In 2009, under the direction of Fr. Patrick McDevitt, Associate Professor, Department of Counseling and Special Education, DePaul University’s College of Education partnered with administrators at five local Catholic high schools to form the Catholic School Council (CSC). CSC provides educational opportunities for teachers and students within both DePaul University and Catholic partner schools, in conjunction with the Vincentian mission.
While the CSC’s initial work included creating leadership teams comprised of presidents and principals of these schools, its current structure focuses on the professional learning of each school. The CSC encourages professional development by working with partner schools to identify current and future needs and providing necessary resources. In addition, all partner schools are invited to participate in network-wide professional development sessions planned during the CSC leadership team’s four annual meetings. The Office of Innovative Professional Learning recently sponsored one of these training sessions on meeting the needs of diverse learners.
Additional site based training takes place at the individual schools to align with their identified needs. The most recent site based training session focused on assessment– specifically on using results to inform instruction and helping teachers develop common assessments across departments. The CSC hopes to expand and grow the network by continuing to both provide resources and invite additional schools to join. Educational Leadership faculty members have served on the council and have been instrumental in helping the schools create professional development plans that align with each of their goals. William Hoecker, Superintendent in Residence, and Superintendent Jeff Stawick, Adjunct Faculty, recently facilitated a leadership training session for all of the department chairs of CSC partner high schools. During this session, participants were able to share roles and responsibilities connected with their duties and discuss teacher evaluations and curriculum development.
The Educational Leadership Program looks forward to future collaborations with Catholic partner schools through the Catholic School Council.