An outcome of a recent study on Catholic schools throughout the Diocese of Worcester was challenging local communities to ask strategic questions about their future. What would you envision for the future of an excellent, Catholic education for the Town of Webster? What do you believe should be offered in a rigorous, excellent Pre-K to 8, faith-based, educational program that allows students to grow in their relationship with God while becoming prepared to succeed in competitive high schools?
These challenging questions have been explored by the Webster Joint Study Committee made up of parish representatives and community leaders. Three sub-committees were formed: the Educational Program Study Committee, Finance Study Committee, and the Facilities Study Committee.
The Educational Program Study Committee began its work first as it considered what programming should be offered to best prepare students in our Catholic schools for the future. Excellence has been and must continue to be the hallmark of a Catholic education in Webster. This committee worked to define a Catholic educational program that would best prepare students for the future in a 21st century, competitive, global society. The committee envisioned programming before, after, and during the school day. It identified programming that would include world languages, STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), fine and preforming arts, robotics, athletics and so much more. They envisioned programming that meets and exceeds what other schools can offer because it is grounded in the Gospel. They considered the professional development needed by administrators and staff that would support the vision. What type of collaboration, sharing, and partnerships among the three parishes would help facilitate implementing such a vision?
It was the charge of the Facilities and Finance Study committees to determine how this new and expanded educational vision could be implemented. What kind of space would be needed for a 21st century education? What would be the space and staffing requirements needed to achieve the vision? What other resources would be needed? The facilities sub-committee carefully studied the physical plants of all three school facilities. The finance sub-committee studied the financials of each parish and considered the various resources that would be needed to accommodate the education committee's vision for an exemplary, competitive educational program.
The work and recommendations have been done with the knowledge that strong parish connections and the traditions of each of the three faith communities are and must continue to be a valuable part of the future. Detailed recommendations that look to the future for growing and improving Catholic education in Webster will be presented to the leadership of the parishes in May.
Each parish school remains an excellent choice for parents seeking a strong Catholic education for children. What is clearly agreed upon by those involved is that a design for the future of Catholic education in Webster must improve the educational opportunities for all children and their families. Education continues to change. Just as the last ten years saw significant changes, a proactive plan with vision will ensure our schools change in ways that build on the success of the past and provide for a future that will demand even more.
Webster Catholic School Vision for the Future