The school – parish – home relationship is the foundation upon which Catholic education was created and still stands. First Eucharist, Reconciliation and Confirmation preparation is provided all of our Catholic elementary schools, in partnership with parents and our local parishes. It is via this powerful triad that the Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations are instilled in the daily life of our schools. A significant goal of the school system is to ensure ongoing faith formation opportunities are provided to our staff. One such program is From Information to Transformation – a faith formation program launched in partnership with the Diocese of Hamilton and available to new and emerging leaders among any of our staff members in the school district. A survey of school administrators and clergy to gather information about parish/school relationships revealed that 81% of respondents believe our schools nurture school, parish and home relationships. Results of the survey are informing how we can continue to strengthen the relationships between our school communities and our local parishes. One of the factors contributing to such positive relationships is the presence in each of our schools of an Ontario Association of Parents in Catholic Education (OAPCE) representative. Seven of these dedicated parent volunteers were able to attend the OAPCE Annual General Meeting.
Of course, our efforts to bolster the school-parish-home triad are supported by other activities in the school system, such as our Catholic School Councils and the Catholic Parent Involvement Committee. These initiatives are discussed in the Parent Engagement section of this report.