Nine delegates from the Diocese of Meath completed two days of training facilitated by the Council for Catechetics of the Irish Episcopal Conference and the National Association of Primary Diocesan Advisors. It is hoped that the delegates will form a Diocesan Resource Team for the in-service training of teachers in the new religion programme over the next four years. It is intended to provide in-service for priests, principals and teachers of the infant classes over the year ahead.
The delegates representing the Diocese of Meath were: Leo Guinan, Paula Haigney, Margaret Healey, Padraig McCahey, Cathy O Brien, Lisa Price, Una Regan, David Gavin (Diocesan Advisor for Religious Education) and Fr. Brendan Ludlow (Diocesan Education Secretary).
The months ahead will be an exciting, challenging and busy time for the Catholic primary schools of the Diocesenof Meath. Minister Jan O’ Sullivan published the new Governance Manual for Primary Schools 2015-19 and an accompanying Circular Letter which specifies the procedures and timeframe for the election and nomination of the new Boards of Management which will take office on 1 December 2015. On behalf of Bishop Smith, I would like to thank all those who served on Boards of Management of schools of the Diocese during this term of office, for their generosity, service, dedication and commitment to your school community.
The publication of The Catholic Pre-school and Primary Religious Education Curriculum for Ireland has brought Religious Education in line with all other subject areas taught in primary schools. This is the first time we have a Primary Religious Education curriculum in Ireland. The new curriculum was granted theDecree of Recognitio by the Holy See last March.
Veritas has produced a programme entitled Grow in Love which fulfills all the requirements of the new R.E. curriculum. Grow in Love, which will succeed the Alive-O programme, will be rolled out in all Catholic primary schools over the next four years beginning this year with the introduction of the Junior and Senior Infant programme.
The content of the curriculum is divided into four interrelated strands: Christian Faith; Word of God; Liturgy & Prayer; and Christian Morality. Each individual lesson plan is intended to address two or more of these strands. These four interrelated strands progress, in a harmonious way, the religious understanding and literacy of each pupil. The four strands, specify the knowledge and understanding and skills which need to be developed and nurtured at each stage so as to attain the educational aims and objectives of each level of the curriculum. The curriculum also specifies the ideal standard of religious literacy which should be developed in students from preschool right up to Sixth class. These are divided into five categories: understanding, communicating, participating, developing spiritual literacy and developing inter-religious literacy.
(Fr Brendan Ludlow, Education Secretary)