This week, I spoke to Dr. Tom Burnford, the President/CEO of NCEA, about creating a new vision for Catholic schools on the Catholic School Matters podcast.  Coming one week after the marketing research podcast and two weeks after the Joy of the Gospel podcast, this trilogy of podcasts is designed to explain the foundation of creating a new vision for Catholic schools.

What do you parents say?  What are the perceptions of Catholic schools?  We need to know this and Tom mentions that he’s planning to distill the information into bite-sized bits of information (Top 10 Things Principals Need to Know, for example).

But we also need to be in touch with our mission.  Pope Francis describes our mission in Joy of the Gospel.  Tom has asked superintendents to explore the meaning and implications of that exhortation, which will be placed alongside the marketing research in Tempe as we try to develop a new vision for Catholic schools.

“Why are we trying to establish a new vision?” I asked Tom.  He displays a remarkable degree of transparency as he explains the crisis/opportunities of Catholic schools, which is a church problem.  Tom is leading the NCEA and as I like to say to the critics, “Who else is there?”   In other words, NCEA might not be perfect but it’s the best solution we have right now so we should all come together to rally around our Catholic schools.

Give the podcast a listen!

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