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									PRELIMINARY PROPOSED DRAFT

  Strategic Plan for Catholic Schools
           in the Diocese of
       Kansas City-St. Joseph




                               February 2009




                               Prepared by


                               www.meitler.com
I. INTRODUCTION ...................................................................................................... 1 
II. VISION FOR CATHOLIC SCHOOLS...................................................................... 2 
   A.  DISTINCTLY CATHOLIC SCHOOLS............................................................................ 2 
   B.  ACADEMICALLY EXCELLENT SCHOOLS .................................................................. 3 
   C.  FISCALLY STABLE SCHOOLS .................................................................................... 3 
III. CATHOLIC IDENTITY............................................................................................ 4 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS .......................................................................................................... 4 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES ............................................................ 4 
IV. ENROLLMENT AND MARKETING ....................................................................... 8 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS .......................................................................................................... 8 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES ............................................................ 9 
V. ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE .................................................................................. 11 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 11 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 11 
VI. LEADERSHIP AND GOVERNANCE................................................................... 14 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 14 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 14 
VII. NORTHLAND ..................................................................................................... 17 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 17 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES FROM THE NORTHLAND
       PASTORAL PLAN ....................................................................................................... 18 
VIII. SOUTHEAST ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS ......................................................... 22 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 22 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 23 
IX. SOUTHEAST HIGH SCHOOLS .......................................................................... 26 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 26 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 26 
X. ST. JOSEPH AREA .............................................................................................. 28 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 28 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 29 
XI. SOUTHWEST ...................................................................................................... 32 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 32 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 33 
XII. RURAL SCHOOLS ............................................................................................. 34 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 34 
   B.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 34 
XIII. CENTRAL CITY ................................................................................................. 36 
   A.  OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................ 36 
   B.  MISSION OF THE CENTRAL CITY SCHOOLS ......................................................... 37 
   C.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 37 
   D.  FACILITIES ................................................................................................................. 40 
XIV. FACILITIES ....................................................................................................... 43 
   A.  GOALS AND RECOMMENDED STRATEGIES .......................................................... 43 
XV. FUNDING CATHOLIC SCHOOLS ..................................................................... 44 
   A.  INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................................... 44 
   B.  ASSUMPTIONS FOR FINANCIAL PLANNING .......................................................... 44 
   C.  TERMINOLOGY .......................................................................................................... 45 
   D.  PREFERRED FUNDING MODELS ............................................................................. 45 
   E.  ALTERNATIVE FUNDING MODELS .......................................................................... 48 
   F.  RECOMMENDATIONS REGARDING GEOGRAPHY ................................................ 51 
   G.  IMPLEMENTATION STRATEGIES............................................................................. 51 
   H.  TUITION AND STEWARDSHIP .................................................................................. 52 
   I.    TUITION ASSISTANCE .............................................................................................. 53 
   J.  PARISH INVESTMENT IN CATHOLIC SCHOOLS .................................................... 53 
   K.  SUPPORT FOR CATHOLIC EDUCATION FROM ALL PARISHES ........................... 54 
   L.  DEVELOPMENT AND ADVANCEMENT .................................................................... 55 
   M.  DIOCESAN SUPPORT FOR CATHOLIC SCHOOLS ................................................. 56 
   N.  TEACHER COMPENSATION ..................................................................................... 57 
I. INTRODUCTION

The U.S. Bishops have stated, “We are convinced that Catholic schools continue to be ‘the most
effective means available to the Church for the education of children and young people’ who are
the future of the Church.”1 Recognizing this, the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph began a
planning process in the spring of 2008 to develop a comprehensive strategic plan for its Catholic
schools. The goal of this process and plan is to ensure the long-term viability and vitality of
Catholic school education in the Diocese.
Extensive data was collected and analyzed from many sources in the Diocese and the broader
community. On-site visits with the leadership of each diocesan, parish and consolidated school
and numerous interviews with church leaders and others were conducted. A data report was
prepared summarizing the information gathered and the challenges currently facing the Catholic
schools of the Diocese. These challenges include demographic shifts, declining enrollments in
many areas, rising costs, aging facilities, diminished financial resources and population growth in
areas having no Catholic schools. The report served as a resource throughout the planning process
and is the basis for the recommendations and strategies in this plan.
A Planning Committee composed of representatives from across the Diocese met regularly with
the consultants to review the data and its implications, to critique the proposals drafted by the
consultants and to review feedback from the broader community. A Steering Committee
composed of Bishop Finn and other diocesan leaders also provided input, feedback and overall
guidance during the planning process. The plan was completed in March 2009 thanks to the
dedication and work of these committees and many other individuals who are deeply committed to
the Church’s mission of Catholic education and the ministry of Catholic schools in the Diocese of
Kansas City-St. Joseph. It is hoped that the goals and strategies which follow in this plan will be
used by leaders of Catholic school education at all levels to guide decision-making, planning and
policy determination and thus ensure the vitality of Catholic school education for many years to
come.



                                 Planning Committee Membership
            Vince Cascone                Marlon De La Torre           Sue Dorrel
            Kermit Fendler               Carol Hussin                 Fr. John McCormack
            Peggy McElduff               Joe Monachino                Alice Munninghoff
            Sandy Nickel                 Christine Ostrom             Maureen Poulin
            Fr. Shawn Ratigan            Dan Ryan                     Jane Schaffer
            Margo Shepard                Fr. Robert Stone             Mary Pat Storms
            Valarie Valle                Judy Warren                  David Woolwine




1
 Renewing our Commitment to Catholic Elementary and Secondary Schools in the Third Millennium, 2005
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Inc.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                        1
DRAFT February 2009
II. VISION FOR CATHOLIC SCHOOLS

The Bishops of the United States have stated clearly the importance of Catholic schools for the
future of the Church and society. They have reminded us that Catholic schools provide “an
education that no other school can supply – excellent academics imparted in the context of
Catholic teaching and practice.”2
The following statements give a vision for Catholic schools as we hope they will be in the Diocese
of Kansas City-St. Joseph now and in the future. The strategic plan will then provide a path to the
realization of this vision for all Catholic schools in the Diocese.
A. Distinctly Catholic Schools
    1. Teaching in the school is based upon the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Scripture, Catholic
       virtues and moral values. Doctrine and tenets of the faith are well taught and deeply integrated
       throughout the curriculum. Doctrine and faith are evident in all aspects of school life.
    2. Each school provides regular opportunities for prayer, worship and reception of the
       Sacraments of Eucharist and Reconciliation. Students are encouraged and assisted to
       develop life-long habits of prayer.
    3. A vibrant faith community is present at each school and that community is connected to
       and relates well with the parish community.
    4. Each school is an effective vehicle of evangelization and ongoing faith formation.
    5. The centrality of the family is recognized. Efforts are made to evangelize parents and to
       support and involve them in the spiritual and academic formation of their children.
    6. A clear mission that is Catholic and Christ-centered guides each school. The entire school
       and parish community understand the mission and work together to carry it out.
    7. Graduates know and understand the teachings of the Catholic faith. Their world view is
       shaped by Catholic teaching and moral principles.
    8. Teachers and administrators have a strong personal faith whereby they give witness to the
       Christian life and integrate Catholic teaching into all subject areas.
    9. While maintaining a strong Catholic identity, Catholic schools welcome students of other faiths.
    10. Schools across the Diocese serve a diverse population in terms of ethnicity, race,
        economic status, background and ability. Enrollment reflects the diversity of the parishes
        and local community served by the school.
    11. All parishes value Catholic schools as an important ministry of the Catholic Church of the
        Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph and accept their responsibility to support Catholic
        school education.
    12. Parishes and schools work collaboratively in a strong supportive relationship.
    13. Students and their families are active and involved in their local parish.



2
 Renewing our Commitment to Catholic Elementary and Secondary Schools in the Third Millennium, 2005
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Inc.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                        2
DRAFT February 2009
B. Academically Excellent Schools
    1. Schools provide a superior comprehensive academic program.
    2. Graduates have acquired an appreciation for life-long learning. They possess the skills
       necessary for critical thinking, moral decision making and team work.
    3. Every elementary school and high school maintains accreditation by the Missouri
       Nonpublic School Accrediting Association and the North Central Association. Schools
       are recognized in the community as academically excellent Catholic institutions with a
       rigorous curriculum.
    4. Early childhood centers maintain accreditation by North Central Association or National
       Association for the Education of Young Children.
    5. Learning needs of students are met through differentiated instruction, a variety of teaching
       strategies and creative methods. Objective measures of student growth and achievement
       verify this.
    6. All teachers and administrators are certified, demonstrate excellence in their profession
       and are faith-filled role models committed to the mission of the school.
    7. Up-to-date technology and current educational resources are used effectively by all
       teachers to enhance teaching and learning.
    8. Each school has an effective school board whose members have the necessary expertise and
       training to provide leadership and support for the school, school administration, and pastor.

C. Fiscally Stable Schools
    1. School facilities are of high quality and fully sufficient to support a superior educational
       program. Each school campus is safe, attractive, clean and in good repair.
    2. Revenue for schools grows to improve and sustain a vision for superior education.
    3. Catholic schools are affordable for parishes and parents who desire a Catholic school
       education for their children.
    4. All parishes contribute to the financial support of diocesan Catholic schools.
    5. Stewardship is well understood and practiced in local faith communities. Stewardship is
       far more than a means of funding ministry; it is a life changing commitment of time, talent
       and treasure.
    6. Every school has an effective development/advancement program that complements
       stewardship in the local parish. Donors increase in number and in their generosity to the
       mission of Catholic education.
    7. Every elementary school and high school maintains an enrollment capable of supporting a
       high quality program.
    8. Teacher compensation is sufficient to attract and retain qualified, excellent teachers.
    9. Every school operates with a balanced budget and practices good business management.
       Schools are openly accountable for use of funds.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                        3
DRAFT February 2009
III. CATHOLIC IDENTITY

Catholic identity is essential to the mission of Catholic schools. It is not enough for our Catholic
schools to be academically excellent. Bishop Finn has repeatedly indicated, our schools must be
“readily and unmistakably identifiable as Catholic schools…working hand in glove with the
Church in moving children and their families toward salvation.”3
A. Observations
    1. The Catholic character of the schools was evident when the schools were visited by the
       consultants. Signs and symbols of the faith were prominently displayed and students’
       participation in prayer and worship was frequently observed.
    2. Principals and pastors with schools expressed a deep commitment to the mission and
       ministry of Catholic schools. Many pastors visit the school on a regular basis and provide
       regular opportunities for Mass and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
    3. The NCEA-ACRE test is administered to students in grades 5 and 8 by schools during the
       year prior to completing the accreditation process. Students tested above the national
       average on all areas of this test.
    4. Schools use a religion curriculum approved by the Diocese.
    5. All religion teachers are required to acquire the appropriate catechetical certification.
    6. Over many years, members of religious communities have helped maintain a strong
       Catholic instruction and culture within the schools. Today this is the responsibility of
       mostly lay administrators and teachers in collaboration with local clergy, school boards
       and the Office of Catholic Schools.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
    1. Each school will be clearly identifiable as a Catholic school and will partner with
       parents and parishes to give students sound instruction in the Catholic faith and
       foster a personal faith commitment that is living, conscious and active.
        Strategies
        1.1    All schools should provide sound instruction in Catholic doctrine. Teachers should
               follow the diocesan religion curriculum and use textbooks approved by the USCCB and
               in conformity with the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
        1.2    Catholic moral formation and moral teaching should be emphasized appropriately at
               every grade and integrated across subject areas. The importance of respect for human
               life from conception to natural death and reverence for the body as a temple of the Holy
               Spirit should be stressed.
        1.3    Religion should be taught daily in elementary schools and early childhood centers. High
               school students should be required to complete eight semesters of theology.



3
 “Catholic Identity and Catholic Excellence in Our Schools.” Action Conference on Catholic Education
February 4, 2008.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                         4
DRAFT February 2009
       1.4   All teachers of religion in grades K through 12 should be Catholics in good standing
             with the Catholic Church. Religion teachers in the elementary schools should acquire
             the appropriate catechetical certification within five years of being hired. High school
             theology teachers should be appropriately degreed.
       1.5   As part of their acceptance of an offer of employment and teaching agreement, all
             Catholic school teachers will sign the Oath of Fidelity developed by the Diocese of
             Kansas City-St. Joseph for those who exercise the role of teacher in the name of the
             Church.
       1.6   All teachers should be required to participate in ongoing courses and in-service
             programs to deepen their own knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith and to
             increase their ability to integrate Catholic teaching and values throughout the
             curriculum.
       1.7   Sacred Scripture, the Catechism of the Catholic Church and other church documents
             should be used as sources and references for the ongoing formation of faculty and staff.
       1.8   Each school should regularly provide opportunities, resources and encouragement for
             faculty, students and families to engage in daily prayer and scriptural reflection, weekly
             celebration of the liturgy and frequent reception of the sacraments of Eucharist and
             Reconciliation.
       1.9   Catholic schools should collaborate with parishes to support and complement parish
             sacramental preparation.
       1.10 The environment of each school should be Christ-centered. Images, visual symbols and
            reminders of the faith should be evident throughout each school building. Each
            classroom should contain an area of sacred space.
       1.11 Each school should identify ways to consciously and deliberately invite and encourage
            the involvement of parents in the religious instruction and faith formation of their
            children. Parents should be encouraged to attend Mass weekly and actively participate
            in the life of their parish or faith community. School parents of other faiths should be
            invited to learn about the Catholic faith and its integral role in the life of the school.
       1.12 Each school should prominently display its mission statement and school leadership
            should promote awareness and understanding of it among staff, students, parents and
            parishioners. It should inspire and direct all aspects of school life.
       1.13 Catholic social teaching and Gospel principles of social justice should be taught in an age-
            appropriate way across the curriculum and modeled within the school. Meaningful service
            opportunities for students and teachers should be provided and related to Church teaching.
       1.14 Each school should encourage students to consider a vocation in the Church as a priest,
            religious or full-time lay leader.
       1.15 The ACRE assessment from NCEA should be administered every two years by all
            schools in grades 5, 8 and 11. The results should be used locally and diocesan-wide to
            identify strengths and correct weaknesses in the religious formation of students.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    5
DRAFT February 2009
   2. All Catholic school administrators will be strong spiritual leaders in their schools.
       Strategies
       2.1   Catholic school administrators should be members in good standing of the Catholic
             Church committed to and knowledgeable of the Catholic faith and active participants in
             the life of their parish. Confirmation of an applicant’s status by their parish pastor
             should be a requirement of the application process.
       2.2   All administrators will strive to continually strengthen the Catholic identity of their
             school. The Catholic School Handbook developed and approved by the Diocese of
             Kansas City-St. Joseph will inform and guide these efforts.
       2.3   Administrators should ensure that teachers understand and follow the approved religion
             curriculum and acquire the appropriate catechetical certification required by the Diocese.
       2.4   Administrators should ensure that all newly hired teachers participate in an orientation
             program focused on the ministry of the Catholic school teacher and the role of each
             teacher in ensuring the Catholic identity of the school.
       2.5   Administrators should communicate the expectation that all school personnel and volunteers
             will act as Christian role models for students. Yearly performance evaluations for teachers
             should include their integration of Catholic teaching and values in classroom instruction and
             their witness of these values in student, staff and parent interactions.
       2.6   Administrators should engage teachers, staff and school board members in a yearly
             review of school policies and practices to ensure their compatibility with the school’s
             Catholic mission and teaching.
       2.7   Administrators should ensure that retreats and other opportunities are regularly provided
             to assist faculty, staff, students and school board members to deepen their personal faith
             commitment and foster the growth of a faith community within the school.
       2.8   When hiring teachers, administrators should give preference to qualified Catholic
             applicants.
       2.9   Administrators should follow the role of the Catholic school leader as outlined in the
             Diocesan Administrative Manual for Schools.
   3. Catholic schools will be valued throughout the Diocese and recognized as
      the shared responsibility of all parishes and parishioners.
       Strategies
       3.1   Parishes without schools should promote the value of Catholic school education and
             encourage parents to consider enrolling their children in an area Catholic school.
       3.2   Each school should identify ways to maintain and strengthen a meaningful connection
             with the home parishes of its students. The Office of Catholic Schools should identify
             and communicate best practices in this regard.
       3.3   Key ideas from the USCCB document, Renewing Our Commitment to Catholic
             Elementary and Secondary Schools in the Third Millennium, regarding the value of
             Catholic schools for the Church and society should be communicated to all parishes.
             Parish leadership should be encouraged to dialogue, reflect and educate parishioners on
             its implications for their parish.


Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                         6
DRAFT February 2009
       3.4   Each school should identify specific ways to collaborate with its sponsoring parish(es) in
             Christian service and in evangelization.
       3.5   Diocesan leadership should use The Catholic Key and other appropriate avenues of
             communication to educate parishioners regarding the importance of Catholic schools and
             their shared responsibility for this ministry.
       3.6   The value of Catholic schools to the Church and the responsibility of all pastors and
             parishes for this ministry should be part of priestly formation and ongoing clergy and
             pastor in-service.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                   7
DRAFT February 2009
IV. ENROLLMENT AND MARKETING

A. Observations
    1. From 2002-03 to 2008-09, Catholic elementary school enrollment in grades K through 8
       in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph declined 15.8%, while Catholic high school
       enrollment increased 4.5%.
    2. The high school increase was experienced by the private Catholic high schools in the
       Diocese. Enrollment in the diocesan high schools decreased 13.7% with most of the
       decrease occurring at St. Mary and Archbishop O’Hara High Schools.
    3. In 2007-08, Catholic elementary schools in the Diocese operated at 74% of capacity with
       about 2,500 empty seats and an average class size of 18.
    4. Twenty-one of thirty elementary schools have fewer students enrolled in 2008-09 than in
       2002-03.
    5. The greatest loss of students occurred in the Central City pod where three schools closed
       from 2003 to 2008.
    6. The kindergarten class of 2002-03 declined from 1,046 students to 793 by the time these
       students reached grade 5, a loss of 253 students indicating that the loss of students is a
       problem of both recruitment and retention.
    7. Overall, 76% of the elementary enrollment in 2007-08 came from the sponsoring parishes.
    8. In 2007-08, the number of Catholic students enrolled in grade 2 was equal to 34% of the
       number of infant baptisms in 2000.
    9. In 2007-08, about 35% of the June 2006 Catholic elementary school graduates in the
       Diocese enrolled in a diocesan high school. About 35% enrolled in other Catholic high
       schools and 30% did not enroll in a Catholic high school.
    10. Schools vary widely in marketing resources and the expertise needed for effective
        marketing efforts.
    11. Schools typically market themselves as separate entities even when several schools serve
        the same city or geographic area.
    12. There is no common message to raise awareness and communicate the benefits of
        Catholic school education in the Diocese.
    13. While many schools have a website, they are not regularly updated and often do not
        effectively entice new families to learn more and consider registering.
    14. There are increasing numbers of Hispanic families in the Diocese. This new pool of
        Hispanic children provides an opportunity to increase enrollment in Catholic schools since
        these families are traditionally Catholic.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                      8
DRAFT February 2009
B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Catholic schools in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph will be effectively
      marketed to create a strong public image in the community, promote the value
      and benefits of a Catholic school education, support development efforts and
      increase enrollment.
       Strategies
       1.1    A diocesan-wide marketing plan should be developed and implemented for Catholic
              school education early childhood through grade 12. The plan should include:
              • Clear and consistent messaging about the advantages and benefits of Catholic
                 school education. The message should focus on what is important for parents.
              • Corporate identity with a common logo and tag line to build “brand” recognition
                 in the community.
             • A media campaign to broaden public awareness of Catholic schools and
                 encourage parents to consider this possibility for their children.
       1.2   The program must have long-term funding and a consistent message since the impact is
             recognized only after two or three years of consistent communication.
       1.3   Establish a position in the Office of Catholic Schools with responsibility for
             implementing the diocesan marketing plan and providing leadership, direction and
             training to local education boards in developing local marketing plans in collaboration
             with the Diocesan Director of Communications.
       1.4    The Office of Catholic Schools should ensure that training is provided for local school
              personnel in the fundamentals of marketing and public relations. The training should include:
              • Development of local marketing plans
             • Customer service training for all school personnel including teachers
              • Practical methods to develop local media relationships
              • Best practices
              • Effective website development
             • Opportunities to network with others in the Diocese engaged in marketing
   2. Individual schools will implement focused marketing and retention programs to
      increase enrollment and consistently operate at 90% capacity or above.
       Strategies
       2.1   Each school should develop a marketing plan which will be submitted to the Office of
             Catholic Schools annually for review and feedback.
       2.2   Every school board should have a Marketing Committee which will be actively involved
             in developing, implementing and evaluating the school’s marketing plan.
       2.3   Each local budget should include a line item with funding for marketing initiatives.
       2.4   Each member of the school community should recognize and fulfill their role in building a
             positive image of the school, recruitment and retention.
       2.5   When more than one school serves the same area, collaborative efforts to promote
             Catholic education for the area should be initiated.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                      9
DRAFT February 2009
       2.6   Communication should be established with Catholic families with children 0 to 4 years
             and with area pre-school programs to encourage Catholic school enrollment.
       2.7   Specific strategies should be developed to retain students from PreK through grade 12.
       2.8   Local marketing efforts should be coordinated with the diocesan program to maximize
             visibility and build a unified, comprehensive program.
   3. Diocesan and local marketing efforts will include a program to actively
      recruit Hispanic children.
       Strategies
       3.1   Advice should be sought from key leaders in the Hispanic community and the Diocesan
             Director of Hispanic Ministry regarding effective methods to gain access to the Hispanic
             community and effectively attract students to enroll.
       3.2   These efforts need to be supported by bilingual marketing materials and school
             personnel.
   4. Parishes with and without a school will be expected to actively encourage
      parents to choose a Catholic school education for their children.
       Strategies
       4.1   Each school should work with area parishes to promote Catholic school education and
             facilitate the dissemination of information to parishioners, especially those with young
             children.
       4.2   Pastors should be encouraged and assisted to promote the value of Catholic school
             education to their parishioners and invite parents to consider enrolling their children in
             areas where Catholic schools are an option.
       4.3   Specific strategies should be developed to attract students enrolled in area religious
             education programs.
   5. When new parishes are established, the parish plan will ordinarily include
      the building of a school to be accomplished in the early phases of the parish
      plan.
       Strategies
       5.1   A market study should be done to validate the need for a school and the ability of the
             parish to sustain it long term with sufficient enrollment and funding.
       5.2   The impact of a new school on existing Catholic schools in the area should be assessed
             to ensure that enrollment in the existing schools is not significantly affected.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    10
DRAFT February 2009
V. ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE

To attract students and be true to its mission, “It is necessary that the Catholic school be
recognized for its pedagogical purpose.”4 Academic excellence must be a hallmark of every
Catholic school. This excellence demands that each student acquire the knowledge and skills
necessary to be a productive member of society. However, this is not enough. Excellence also
demands that students are taught to seek truth, make moral decisions and integrate their faith with
daily living.
A. Observations
       1. The Iowa Test of Basic Skills is administered to students in grades 4 and 6. On this test,
          students scored above grade levels in every area tested in 2006-07, the most recent year
          for which results were available when schools were visited.
       2. High school students score above the State and national average in the ACT assessment.
          More than 95% of the graduates of diocesan high schools go on to college.
       3. The consultants observed students engaged in learning and teachers using up-to-date
          resources.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
      1. Every Catholic school in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph will be
         recognized for its effective combination of Catholic identity and academic
         excellence which distinguishes Catholic schools as uniquely different from
         other schools in the community.
           Strategies
           1.1   The combination of these two integral aspects of the school’s mission should be clearly
                 articulated to the community.
           1.2   The Office of Catholic Schools should identify specific benchmarks to be achieved in
                 these two inter-related areas.
           1.3   Curriculum guidelines for core subject areas K to 8 should be developed under the
                 leadership of the Office of Catholic Schools.
           1.4   Each elementary and high school should achieve and maintain accreditation by the North
                 Central Association. In addition, elementary schools should maintain accreditation by
                 the Missouri Non-Public Accrediting Association.
           1.5   All schools should offer a complete program including instruction in fine arts, global
                 language and physical education and should provide co-curricular opportunities which
                 are age appropriate.
           1.6   Standardized testing should be required in grades 4, 6 and 8 when a new testing contract
                 is negotiated.




4
    Benedict XVI, September 20, 2008

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                     11
DRAFT February 2009
   2. Catholic schools will provide program opportunities for students with a wide
      range of gifts and needs.
       Strategies
       2.1   Teachers should be trained in methods of differentiated instruction and supported in
             implementing them.
       2.2   Schools should utilize the assistance available from the Foundation for Inclusive
             Religious Education (FIRE) when possible to enable them to serve students with special
             needs and provide these students with an inclusive education.
       2.3   Schools should offer enrichment programs that attract and challenge students who are
             accelerated learners.
   3. Each elementary school and high school department will develop a multi-
      year curriculum improvement plan.
       Strategies
       3.1   Standardized test scores (ITBS) and other objective measures of student achievement
             should be analyzed each year to determine areas of strength and weakness and identify
             specific improvement goals.
       3.2   Progress in meeting improvement goals should be evaluated regularly.
       3.3   The school’s improvement plan and an update on its implementation should be
             communicated to parents periodically.
       3.4   Each elementary school should strive to achieve an average score of the 75th percentile
             or above for all grades on all sections of the diocesan recommended standardized testing
             program.
       3.5   Student achievement should be a factor included in the yearly evaluation of teacher
             performance. Multiple measures of student achievement should be used.
       3.6   Teachers should engage in ongoing professional development that is aligned with the
             goals of the improvement plan. The Office of Catholic Schools should work to continue
             the professional development program supported by the Kaufman Grant and identify
             ways to provide professional development opportunities for teachers in all areas of the
             Diocese without requiring excessive travel.
       3.7   Teachers should be encouraged to explore opportunities in the broader community which
             will enable students to experience the practical application of the concepts they are
             learning.
   4. Technology will be integrated throughout the instructional program to enhance
      teaching and learning.
       Strategies
       4.1   Teachers should continue to be trained and supported in the use of current technology as
             an instructional tool.
       4.2   Each school should have a written technology plan which will address the use,
             acquisition and maintenance of up-to-date hardware and software.



Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                 12
DRAFT February 2009
       4.3   The Office of Catholic Schools should investigate options for a common web-based
             student information system that will enable schools to share grades, progress reports and
             other information with parents online, and for diocesan-wide software licenses.
       4.4   Each school budget should contain an allocation for technology.
       4.5   Libraries should be automated and access to resources expanded through technology.
   5. Schools will continue to assist families by providing safe, supervised,
      enriching, high quality programs for young children.
       Strategies
       5.1   Whenever possible, elementary schools should offer the option of full day PreK
             programs as a service to parents and a potential feeder for the elementary program.
       5.2   Early childhood centers should maintain accreditation by the North Central Accrediting
             Association or acquire NAEYC Accreditation.
       5.3   All early childhood programs should provide age-appropriate faith formation,
             evangelization and quality education.
       5.4   Whenever possible, early childhood, PreK, extended day and summer programs should
             be priced to ensure they are at least self-supporting.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                 13
DRAFT February 2009
VI. LEADERSHIP AND GOVERNANCE

A. Observations
    1. All school principal candidates must be approved by the Bishop of the Diocese before
       being offered a position.
    2. School administrators in the Diocese have a strong commitment to the mission and
       ministry of Catholic schools.
    3. Effective school administrators and strong supportive pastors are essential to the success
       of Catholic schools.
    4. The Office of Catholic Schools with the approval of the Bishop determines overall
       policies and guidelines for the operation of Catholic schools in the Diocese. The Office of
       Catholic Schools also provides support and oversight for schools and administrators.
    5. There are four school governance models currently operating within the Diocese:
       • 23 parish schools and 8 parish early childhood centers
       •     6 inter-parochial schools
       •     4 diocesan high schools
       •     3 private high schools sponsored by religious communities
       •     1 private high school and 1 private elementary school not sponsored by a religious
             community
    6. Most elementary schools have an advisory board. These boards have varying degrees of
       involvement, responsibility and effectiveness.
    7. The vision, expertise and assistance of lay leaders is increasingly important for the long-
       term success of Catholic schools.
    8. There is a Diocesan Catholic School Board which is advisory to the Bishop through the
       Superintendent of Schools.
    9. Preparing and recruiting qualified future administrators to replace the current group of
       veteran administrators will be critical to maintain top quality Catholic schools in the
       Diocese.
    10. Few schools have a comprehensive strategic long-range plan.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Developing strong leadership to effectively carry out the mission of Catholic
      schools will be a priority for the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph.
       Strategies
       1.1     Emphasis should be given to the “vocation” of leadership ministry in the Church and the
               unique ways in which leaders are called by God to serve the Catholic school community
               and the Church’s educational mission in the ongoing professional development of
               administrators and teachers.
       1.2     All principals should continue to be approved by the Bishop before being hired.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    14
DRAFT February 2009
       1.3   All newly hired school administrators should be required to participate in a leadership
             program developed by the Office of Catholic Schools which addresses the mission of
             Catholic school education, the spiritual and religious education components of Catholic
             school leadership, Church documents related to Catholic schools and best practices
             regarding faith formation and growth in spiritual life for faculty and students.
       1.4   The Office of Catholic Schools should conduct a regular review of school principals and
             presidents to evaluate job performance and facilitate planning for professional
             development. The canonical administrator of the school should be involved in the
             evaluation process.
       1.5   The Office of Catholic Schools and school principals should identify teachers with
             administrative potential and encourage them to attain the certification and other
             requirements needed for such a position.
       1.6   Diocesan leadership should continue to appoint pastors to parishes with schools who
             have a commitment to the ministry and mission of Catholic schools, view the school as
             integral to the Church’s educational mission and are able to further the school’s mission.
       1.7   Pastors of all parishes should be encouraged by diocesan leadership and assisted to
             understand the critical value of Catholic schools in fulfilling the teaching ministry of the
             Church and to promote Catholic school education to parish families. This topic should
             be included in ongoing in-service for pastors and clergy.
   2. Catholic schools in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph will be governed by a
      model that best fits their local situation. Under ordinary circumstances, the parish
      model is preferred.
       Strategies
       2.1   Each school should have a school board which is given a meaningful role in strategic
             planning, marketing and development for the school in keeping with the advisory or
             jurisdictional status of the board.
       2.2   The Office of Catholic Schools should develop a common set of bylaws for each type of
             board – parish, co-sponsored and diocesan high school – which will be adopted by all
             schools under each governance model.
       2.3   The Office of Catholic Schools should provide ongoing in-service for all board
             members.
       2.4   Board members should be chosen for their expertise, and membership should include lay
             people who are not parents of current students. The number of parents should be limited
             to no more than half of the members.
       2.5   The Office of Catholic Schools should assist pastors and principals to effectively work
             with a school board by sharing best practices and providing in-service.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    15
DRAFT February 2009
   3. Each school will develop a five-year strategic plan with specific goals and
      strategies for strengthening its Catholic identity, academic program, enrollment,
      finances and facilities.
       Strategies
       3.1   School Board members and school administrators should collaborate in this effort.
       3.2   The Office of Catholic Schools should review and update the criteria for school viability
             checklist and assist all schools to use it as a planning tool in setting minimum standards.
       3.3   The strategic plan for each school should include the following components:
              • Vision, mission, Catholicity
              • Climate of the school
              • Leadership
              • Professional development as part of continuous improvement
              • Instruction as part of continuous improvement
              • Curriculum
              • Services/resources
              • Facilities
              • Finance/budget
              • Planning/marketing
              • Data-based five-year plan
              • Communication with stakeholders
             Some of these components already will have been developed to meet accreditation
             requirements.
       3.4   The plan and progress in implementing the strategic plan should be shared with the
             school community.
   4. The Bishop will make and promulgate appropriate changes in the role of the
      Superintendent of Schools to reflect the increased responsibility of the
      Superintendent for oversight and school accountability.
   5. The Office of Catholic Schools will be adequately staffed to assist the
      Superintendent in providing leadership and oversight for the schools in the
      Diocese.
       Strategy
       5.1   This plan identifies additional responsibilities in the areas of marketing, planning and
             board development which will need assistance and oversight from the Office of Catholic
             Schools.
   6. The revised Diocesan Policy Book for Catholic Schools, when approved by
      the Bishop, will be promulgated as diocesan policy.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                   16
DRAFT February 2009
 VII. NORTHLAND

A. Observations
    1. The population in the Northland (Clay County and Platte County) was estimated to be
       296,833 in 2007. In the seven years from 2000 to 2007, population grew by 39,000 or
       15%. Cities with the largest growth are Kansas City, Liberty, Kearney, and Smithville.
    2. From 1980 to 2000, the population in Platte County grew 27,400. From 2000 to 2020, the
       population is projected to grow about 30,300 or 41%.
    3. From 1980 to 2000, the population in Clay County grew 47,500. From 2000 to 2020, the
       population is projected to grow about 55,600 or 30%.
    4. The population of 5 to 14 year olds is projected to increase 10% and 15% in Platte and
       Clay counties from 2010 to 2020. The population of 15 to 19 year olds is projected to
       increase 6% and 22% in the same period. Population growth is not even across the
       counties, and schools in growth areas will see disproportionately more growth.
    5. Liberty and the Shoal Creek Valley are the largest growth areas of the Northland. Shoal
       Creek Valley, an area between I-435 and I-35, is projected to grow 12,500 persons from 2000
       to 2020. The area east of I-35 including the City of Liberty is projected to grow 9,100 persons
       from 2000 to 2020. Together the population of these regions was 37,000 in 2000 and is
       projected to be more than 58,000 by 2020.
    6. K to 8 enrollment in Catholic schools in the Northland grew from 1,832 in 2002-03 to
       1,901 in 2008-09, a 4% increase. Three schools grew by a total of 243 students, while
       three schools declined by a total of 174 students. Kindergarten enrollment for 2008-09 is
       about the same as it was in 2002-03, and down from 2001-02.
    7. Four Catholic schools operate in the southern part of Clay County (St. Charles,
       St. Patrick, St. Andrew and St. Gabriel). These schools have an enrollment capacity based
       on current staffing levels of 1,250 (K to 8 assuming 25 per class). Current enrollment in
       these schools is 922, 74% of capacity.
    8. Catholic schools generally have a regional service area, reaching a population wider than
       the host parish.
    9. School capacity is greatest in developed areas where population is stable and mature. In
       order for these schools to achieve full enrollment, they must reach outside of their
       geographic area and reach beyond parish boundaries.
    10. Catholic schools are generally not available or located in areas of the Northland where
        growth is greatest.
    11. Freshman enrollment at St. Pius X High School is 98 in 2008-09, down from 125 two years
        earlier. The high school attracted 72% of the 8th grade class from schools in the Northland
        for 2007-08, up from prior years. An increase in enrollment from public schools has not
        occurred.
    12. About $10 million has been invested in improving and expanding facilities at St. Pius X High
        School. To the credit of the community supporting St. Pius X High School, facilities are up
        to date placing the school in a strong position to serve students and remain competitive.


Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    17
DRAFT February 2009
    13. Enrollment at St. Pius X High School is 418 in 2008-09. The capacity of the building is
        between 550 and 600. A larger enrollment would give the school more funds with which
        to improve and expand programs.
    14. The Northland does not have the population base or the number of Catholic elementary
        schools necessary to support two Catholic high schools. St. Pius X High School should
        remain as the Catholic high school of the Northland at its present location.
    15. A market study was conducted in 2007-08 for new Catholic schools in the Northland.
        Participating in the study were the parishes of the Northland. The study concluded that a
        new Catholic elementary school is needed and should be opened at a new Holy Family
        Parish site.
    16. Holy Family will be the only parish located in the “North Oak Corridor”, the area within
        I-435 and north of Barry Road. By 2020, the population in this area on the Clay County
        side is projected to grow from 22,400 in 2000 to 36,700, an increase of 14,300.
    17. A formal agreement is in place between St. James Parish and Annunciation Parish to make
        Catholic school education available and affordable for families who want a Catholic
        education.
    18. Strong cooperation continues between Holy Family Parish and St. Charles Borromeo
        Parish with enrollment and operational support for St. Charles Borromeo School.
    19. St. James recently completed building seven new rooms for library/computers, youth, pre-
        school, kindergarten and homerooms. The cafeteria was expanded along with other renovations.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies from the Northland Pastoral Plan
   1. Collaboration among the Northland schools will be maintained and
      increased.
       Strategies
       1.1   Catholic education in the Northland will benefit from collaboration in marketing and
             sharing of expertise. Conduct a market survey of potential school families to
             determine why enrollment is not higher, perceptions of the school, and expectations
             of parents. A telephone survey methodology is recommended. Use the results of
             the study to craft a marketing plan and refine the school improvement plan.
       1.2   Catholic schools should be in dialogue with neighboring schools to look at ways to
             collaborate in planning programs and sharing resources. This is particularly true for
             schools in close proximity to each other with overlapping enrollments: St. Charles
             Borromeo, St. Patrick, St. Andrew the Apostle, and St. Gabriel the Archangel.
       1.3   Continue to strengthen the collaboration between St. Pius X High School and
             St. Patrick School. Identify ways to share resources and support one another.
             Explore ways to share physical facilities for the benefit of both institutions.
             Complete a plan to develop land that could become common to both institutions.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                  18
DRAFT February 2009
   2. All Northland area parishes will participate in the support of Catholic
      schools in the Northland.
       Strategies
       2.1   A formal agreement should be established between St. James Parish and St. Ann Parish
             to make Catholic school education available and affordable for families who want a
             Catholic education.
       2.2   Continue the strong cooperation with Holy Family Parish to sponsor St. Charles School.
             Work at marketing and recruiting to sustain full enrollment in two classes per grade.
       2.3   When a school is opened at Holy Family, establish formal agreements with other
             Northland parishes (e.g., Twelve Apostles Parish, Church of Good Shepherd) to make
             Catholic education available to non-parishioners. The agreement would specify
             admissions priority, financial support, and other terms. Maintain the agreement with
             St. Charles Borromeo Parish, and rewrite the agreement when the time comes to open a
             new school at Holy Family.
       2.4   As long as Good Shepherd Parish does not have a school, the parish should enter into a
             formal agreement with nearby parishes which have (or will have) a school. This will
             make Catholic school education available and affordable for families who want a
             Catholic education until such time as Good Shepherd Parish has its own school.
   3. In the future, expand Catholic schools as needed to serve the large
      population growth occurring in some areas. Open schools only after a
      careful enrollment market study makes a compelling case that the new
      school will be able to sustain viable enrollment and does not create over
      supply causing undesirable consequences for existing schools.
       Strategies
       3.1   At least one new Catholic school will need to be opened, another expanded, and long
             term there is a possibility another will need to be downsized to balance the capacity of
             schools with the school-age population.
       3.2   A new Catholic school should be built at the new site of Holy Family Parish. This
             should be the next new school to open in the Northland. The current site and facilities of
             Holy Family Parish are not adequate to serve the growing community long-term. The
             parish should relocate to the new site at 106th Street and Woodland Avenue. Building a
             Catholic elementary school at the new site of Holy Family Parish is a second priority
             after building a new church. The timing will depend on capital fundraising potential.
       3.3   In the first phase of construction at the new site of Holy Family Parish, include
             classroom space designed for early childhood education with pre-kindergarten and
             extended day programs. The program should be a strong feeder for a Catholic school.
             Before launching a program, thoroughly study the market and determine the interest for
             such a program and the type and breadth of programs that could be offered.
       3.4   It is very possible a new school at Holy Family Parish will compete with existing
             schools, in particular St. Charles Borromeo School. Plan for the opening of a new
             school in collaboration with St. Charles Borromeo Parish to avoid a negative impact on
             St. Charles Borromeo School. Annually monitor enrollment trends at St. Charles and
             make adjustments to number of classes as necessary.


Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                  19
DRAFT February 2009
       3.5   A Catholic school could be a possibility for Church of the Annunciation in Kearney
             sometime in the future. The demographics and finances of the parish are not sufficient
             to construct or operate a school at this time.
       3.6   Build facilities space at St. James Parish for an expanded early childhood center
             providing a range of programs. This should be part of a master plan. This will serve a
             real need in the community and provide a solid source of students for the school. A
             study may be needed to determine the scope and scale of programs that would be viable.
       3.7   Build into the master site plan for St. James Parish a long-range option for expanding the
             school by another 10 or 12 classrooms. Construction would not be considered in the
             short-term, but more like 15 years in the future. These classrooms allow for the
             possibility of expanding the school to three classes per grade if the need arises. The
             need to grow will depend on whether a new school opens in the Northland, population
             growth and market demand. This expansion should go forward only after a professional
             enrollment market study is completed. Including additional classrooms in the master
             plan does not commit the parish to building them.
       3.8   Twelve Apostles Parish will be established in the Platte City area. A school is part of
             the master plan for the parish. However, a school should be considered after the parish
             has an established presence at a permanent site, the number of active households
             provides a sufficient pool of school-age children, and the parish has the financial ability
             to support a school. A new school would serve Platte City, Weston, and the surrounding
             area. Until a school is formed, a formal agreement should be established with other
             parishes to make Catholic school education available and affordable for families who
             want a Catholic education.
       3.9   In the next 10 to 15 years, a new parish is needed to serve Platte County and relieve
             St. Therese Parish as population growth continues. A new parish should be established
             at another site in Platte County and within the service area of St. Therese. The new
             parish should open a school as soon as it is feasible to do so. There should be close
             collaboration between St. Therese Parish and the new parish/school.
       3.10 A new parish should be established at a strategic site between St. James Parish and Holy
            Family Parish, perhaps in 15 to 20 years. It is not likely a new school would be needed
            at this site if there are schools at the sites of Holy Family Parish and St. James Parish.
            The new parish should have an agreement with other parishes to provide enrollment and
            operational support for Catholic schools.
   4. Increase enrollment at St. Pius X High School and build greater support in
      the community through an effective and integrated marketing program.
       Strategies
       4.1   Conduct an audit of all marketing functions and identify strengths and gaps in the
             current program.
       4.2   Determine reasons for declines in 9th grade enrollment. Conduct market research of
             families in feeder schools.
       4.3   Develop a written marketing plan that prioritizes marketing activities. Review the
             budget needed to implement the plan and identify financial resources needed.
       4.4   Seek to strengthen the partnership relationship with parishes in the Northland. Seek
             parish support and promotion for Catholic secondary education.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    20
DRAFT February 2009
   5. Update the comprehensive strategic plan for St. Pius X High School.
       Strategies
       5.1   The School Board should have a lead role in updating the plan.
       5.2   Evaluate progress on all goals in the last plan and make adjustments as needed.
       5.3   Approve an updated plan by May 2009.
       5.4   Prepare a five-year financial projection. Make realistic projections of parish support
             and cost of loan payments. Evaluate options for financial sustainability in light of
             these challenges and others that may be identified.
       5.5   Address enrollment decline in freshman class.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                  21
DRAFT February 2009
 VIII. SOUTHEAST ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

A. Observations
    1. There are six elementary schools. Elementary school enrollment is:
                                                            K to 8     K to 8  Average         K to 8
                                                       Enrollment % Capacity Class Size   Enrollment
         School                         City              2007-08    2007-08    2007-08      2008-09
         St. John LaLande               Blue Springs         327        73%         18           253
         Nativity of Mary               Independence         228        65%         16           269
         Our Lady of Peace              Kansas City          139        79%         20            94
         St. John Francis Regis         Kansas City          256        79%         20           251
         Our Lady of the Presentation   Lee's Summit         441        77%         19           454
         Our Lady of Lourdes            Raytown              112        50%         12            99

         Total                                              1,503       72%         18         1,420


    2. St. John Francis Regis Parish funds its school using a combination tithing and tuition
       model. The other five parishes use a tuition model. Our Lady of Peace changed from a
       tithing to a tuition model five years ago when the school became co-sponsored. Nativity
       of Mary changed to the tuition model seven years ago and St. John LaLande changed to
       tuition in 2008-09.
    3. St. Bernadette School closed in 2003.
    4. Our Lady of Peace is a regional school sponsored by four area parishes and is located at
       St. Catherine of Siena Parish. This is the southern most school in the southeast corridor.
       In 2008-09 Our Lady of Peace School has multi-age sections for grades K and 1, 2 and 3,
       and 5 and 6.
    5. In 2008-09 students at Our Lady of Peace School became eligible to apply for Central
       City School Fund tuition grants.
    6. Tuition in 2008-09 at Our Lady of Peace School and St. John Francis Regis School are
       $3,100 and $3,240 respectively and the lowest of the schools in the pod.
    7. From 2002-03 to 2007-08, K to 8 enrollment increased 52% at Nativity of Mary School,
       11% at St. John Francis Regis School and 3% at Our Lady of the Presentation School.
       Over the same period, enrollment decreased at St. John LaLande School (-15%), Our
       Lady of Peace School (-61%) and Our Lady of Lourdes School (-24%).
    8. In 2007-08 non-Catholic enrollment at St. John Francis Regis School and Our Lady of
       Lourdes School was 30% and 39% respectively. Non-Catholic enrollment at St. John
       Francis Regis School grew from 19% in 2002-03 to 30% in 2007-08.
    9. Nativity of Mary School, a parish school, is the only Catholic elementary school in
       Independence and serves the Independence area with about 27% of its enrollment coming
       from 12 other parishes in 2007-08.
    10. Population is projected to increase in the Lee’s Summit and Blue Spring areas though
        registered households have declined in the Blue Springs parishes.
    11. The Blue Springs Public School District indicates that their enrollment increases by 200
        students each year. Enrollment in the Lee’s Summit School District increased by 2,300
        students from 2002-03 to 2008-09.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                          22
DRAFT February 2009
B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Our Lady of Peace School is not sustainable under the current
      circumstances and should close in June 2009.
       Rationale
       • Enrollment in grades K to 8 has declined to 94 students in 2008-09. The school has 56
         empty seats and is at 63% of capacity. The decline in total PreK to 8 enrollment has
         been fast and significant, declining from 408 in 2002-03 to 107 in 2008-09.
       • The school is not located in an area that is likely to attract new enrollment.
       • Each year the school has been losing anywhere from 29 to 53 students due to attrition.
         This does not reflect stability.
       • Only 8 students in kindergarten for 2008-09 is not a viable number to populate upper
         grades in the future, especially since due to attrition, enrollment has declined 21%
         every year for the last three years.
       • Our Lady of Peace changed from a tithing to a tuition model five years ago when the
         school became co-sponsored, causing students to leave.
       • In 2008-09 students at Our Lady of Peace School were given permission to receive
         funding through diocesan grants provided through the Central City School Fund. The
         school will receive a total of $14,200 for 14 families in 2008-09 through this fund.
       • In 2007-08, over $60,000 in tuition assistance was provided by St. Catherine Parish
         from the spring auction and Ruysser Funds.
       • The current facility will need major capital investment in the near future.
       • Three of four parishes supporting the school had an overall decline of 18% in their
         offertory giving from 2002 to 2007. St. Sabina Parish was the only parish where
         offertory grew (20%). Revenue from the supporting parishes may not be sufficient to
         provide a balanced budget that maintains a quality program.
       • The budget was balanced for 2007-08, but a deficit of about $180,000 is anticipated in
         2008-09. Savings will be used to supplement development income to cover the deficit
         this year. Savings will not be sufficient to cover future deficits.
       • Despite many efforts to market the current school and the availability of tuition
         assistance from CCSF in 2008, enrollment continues to decline.
       Strategies
       1.1   Current students should be encouraged and assisted to transfer to other Catholic schools
             for the next school year.
       1.2   Tuition assistance should be provided to current families to assist them in the transition
             to other schools.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                   23
DRAFT February 2009
   2. Determine the feasibility of establishing a new school with a covenant
      agreement at St. Sabina Parish in Belton or utilizing the Kurzweil property.
       Rationale
       • There is currently no Catholic school in Cass County.
       • St. Sabina is the largest of the sponsoring parishes and the only one with more
         registered households in 2007 than in 2000. It is located west of Hwy 71 where growth
         is taking place.
       • Among the 287 children in religious education programs at the four sponsoring
         parishes in 2007-08, 179 or 62% are parishioners of St. Sabina Parish.
       • A school at St. Sabina Parish could serve additional parishes east of Hwy 71.
       • The potential loss of Our Lady of Peace School raises the need to have a school in this
         area.
       Strategies
       2.1   Survey parents of the area parishes to determine their willingness to enroll their children.
       2.2   Determine which site (St. Sabina’s or the Kurzweil property is the better location to
             attract students from current parishes sponsoring Our Lady of Peace School growth areas
             East of I-71 and Cass County.
       2.3   If the Kurzweil property is selected, the school should be a regional or co-sponsored
             school.
   3. Benchmarks for viability will be established by the school leadership of Our
      Lady of Lourdes School in conjunction with the Office of Catholic Schools
      and approved by the Office of Catholic Schools. Benchmarks are not to be
      viewed as goals, but minimum criteria to demonstrate viability.
       Strategies
       3.1   An action plan should be developed to achieve these benchmarks over a three-year
             period.
       3.2   The school should set goals as a part of its strategic plan. Goals should extend beyond
             the benchmarks, as the benchmarks are a minimum definition of viability.
       3.3   A three to five year financial projection should be prepared as one of the benchmarks.
       3.4   Progress in achieving these benchmarks should be monitored on a yearly basis by the
             Office of Catholic Schools. If the benchmarks cannot be met within a specified timeline
             and showing adequate annual progress, the school should close or merge.
       3.5   The school should give serious consideration to establishing a Preschool program.
       3.6   Strategies to attract new students from a broader geographic area should be identified
             along with strategies to retain current students through grade 8.
       3.7   The school will need to attract students from beyond the Raytown area given the low
             number of baptisms there in recent years and the current religious education enrollment.
       3.8   If enrollment continues to decline and/or the supporting parish cannot sustain the
             subsidy required, the school should close.


Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    24
DRAFT February 2009
   4. St. John Francis Regis, St. John LaLande, Nativity of Mary and Our Lady of
      the Presentation Schools will develop/update a strategic plan for the school
      which includes multi-year enrollment and financial projections.
       Strategies
       4.1   Focused public relations marketing strategies which encourage enrollment from new
             parishioner families and promote a positive image of the school should be implemented.
             Retention strategies should also be identified with a goal of achieving and maintaining
             90% capacity.
       4.2   St. John LaLande School should identify the reasons for its enrollment losses over the
             last two years and develop strategies to reverse this trend. While parish households have
             declined in the Blue Springs parishes, infant baptisms and religious education enrollment
             indicate a sufficient pool of children exists.
       4.3   St. John Francis Regis School should continue to enhance its program through
             collaboration with Archbishop O’Hara High School and sharing of facilities and other
             educational resources.
   5. The feasibility of establishing a school at St. Mark’s Parish in Independence
      in the immediate future will be studied.
       Rationale
       • The parish has about 2,500 registered households and over 300 children in religious
         education.
       • In 2007-08, only 25 students from the parish attended Nativity of Mary School.
       • The lack of a Catholic school in the parish does not encourage families to consider
         Catholic education and establishes a pattern of public school attendance.
       Strategies
       5.1   The availability of sufficient space on or near the church property should be determined.
       5.2   The potential impact of a new school at St. Mark’s Parish on current schools, especially
             Nativity of Mary School, should be considered before a decision is made.
       5.3   A survey of St. Mark’s parishioners should be conducted to determine the level of
             support for establishing a school and potential enrollment.
       5.4   A new school should begin with one or more primary grades and add a grade each year
             through grade 8.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                   25
DRAFT February 2009
 IX. SOUTHEAST HIGH SCHOOLS

A. Observations
    1. Archbishop O’Hara High School and St. Mary Bundschu Memorial High School are
       located in the Southeast pod. Currently only four students from the Central City,
       Southwest and Southeast elementary schools attend a diocesan high school other than
       St. Mary’s or Archbishop O’Hara. These four students attend St. Pius X High School in
       the Northland.
    2. In 2008-09 Archbishop O’Hara High School has 431 students enrolled (22% less than in
       2002-03), and St. Mary High School has 183 enrolled (24% less than in 2002-03).
    3. In 2007-08, 61% of the freshman class at Archbishop O’Hara High School came from
       Catholic elementary schools in the Southeast pod and 13% came from schools in the
       Southwest pod. These students represent 46% of the 8th grade graduates of the
       elementary schools in the Southeast pod and 6% of those in the Southwest pod.
    4. In 2007-08, 46% of the freshman class at St. Mary High School came from schools in the
       Southeast pod, and 24% came from the Central City pod. These students represent 13% and
       14% of the elementary graduates in these respective pods. The majority of the students
       attending from the Central City pod graduated from St. Ann School which closed in June 2008.
    5. In 2007-08, 160 of the 258 Catholic elementary school graduates in the Southeast pod
       went to private Catholic high schools and 16 went to Archbishop O’Hara High School.
    6. Based on 2007-08 enrollments, the number of eighth grade graduates from the elementary
       schools in the Southeast pod remains fairly stable. These are the schools from which both
       high schools draw the most students.
    7. St. Mary High School has a plan to relocate the school to a new site in eastern
       Independence closer to the Lee’s Summit and Blue Springs area.
    8. St. Mary High School and Archbishop O’Hara High School compete for students from largely
       the same Catholic elementary schools, many of which are experiencing enrollment decline. It
       does not appear that the current feeder schools can support two diocesan high schools in this
       pod long term.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Each of these high schools will submit a five-year strategic plan to the
      Office of Catholic Schools.
       Strategies
       1.1   The plan should include realistic, data-based enrollment and financial projections to
             demonstrate its sustainability until a decision is made regarding the location and type of
             a new combined arrangement.
       1.2   The projection should include the needed capital expenditures to support the program
             and attract students. In the case of St. Mary’s, this includes the projected relocation of
             the facility.



Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    26
DRAFT February 2009
   2. A market study will be done to determine the best location for and type of
      high school to attract students and to serve the area long term.
       Strategies
       2.1   Determine the desirability of a co-educational, co-institutional or single-sex model and
             the optional location(s) to serve the 470 corridor.
       2.2   The following should be included in the objectives for the market study:
              a. Determine best location
              b. Evaluate enrollment potential
              c. Determine interest in single-sex education
              d. Study impact on other Catholic high schools, both diocesan and private
              e. Determine the type of high school needed
              f. Form a task force with representatives from the Diocese, area pastors, and board
                  members of each high school.
       Rationale
       • Both high schools compete for essentially the same pool of students.
       • Given the current and possible future feeder schools in the area, it does not appear that
         two diocesan high schools can be supported in this area long term.
       • Given the large number of Catholic elementary school graduates in the Southeast pod
         attracted to private Catholic high schools, the current feeder schools are not sufficient
         to sustain two diocesan high schools.
       • The current economy makes it difficult for St. Mary High School to successfully
         undertake a multi-million dollar major capital campaign.
       • St. John LaLande School and St. Ann Schools were the two largest feeder schools for
         St. Mary High School in 2007-08. The future is different because: 1) St. Ann closed in
         June 2008, and 2) St. John LaLande lost enrollment and future 8th grades could be 16
         to 25 depending on retention.
       • Currently, St. Mary High School is not in the right location to draw students from areas
         where the population is growing. It will continue to struggle for enrollment if it
         remains at its present location.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                  27
DRAFT February 2009
X. ST. JOSEPH AREA

A. Observations
    1. There are three Catholic elementary schools and one high school in the city of St. Joseph.
    2. All of the elementary schools operate under a tithing model.
    3. Public elementary and high school enrollments in St. Joseph have decreased from 2004 to
       2008. The school-age population in Buchanan County has also been decreasing.
    4. Catholic elementary school enrollment declined at two of the three elementary schools from
       2002-03 to 2008-09. While enrollment at Bishop LeBlond High School was greater in
       2007-08 than in 2002-03, enrollment declined in each of the last four years.
                                                                                       Change 02-03 to 08-09
        School                       02-03 03-04 04-05 05-06 06-07 07-08 08-09          Number       Percent
        St. Francis Xavier             359    326    317    328    321    305    301         -58       -16%
        St. James                      124    124    114    118    142    153    147          23        19%
        St. Joseph Cathedral           255    248    238    223    236    196    181         -74       -29%
        St. Patrick (closed 6/07)       97     84     74     78     21
        Bishop LeBlond High School     238    247    282    281    273    267    224         -14        -6%

        Total                        1,073 1,029 1,025 1,028       993    921    853        -220       -21%
        Note: Enrollments shown for elementary schools includes grades K to 8.

    5. St. Patrick Elementary School closed in June 2007 with a PreK to 8 enrollment of 43
       students.
    6. Overall, the four schools have relatively high retention rates. St. Joseph Cathedral School,
       however, experienced a net loss of 26 students in grades 1 through 8 in 2007-08. The
       primary reason was the implementation of a new policy regarding tithing.
    7. St. James School had the highest percent of non-Catholic enrollment (19%) in 2007-08.
    8. St. Joseph Cathedral and St. James Schools have K to 8 Hispanic enrollment of 13% and
       12% respectively. St. Francis Xavier and Bishop LeBlond High School have 4% and 2%
       respectively. Demographics for the City of St. Joseph are 11% Hispanic.
    9. Each of the elementary schools operated at 71% or less capacity in 2007-08 with average
       class sizes of 17 or 18 students.
    10. The St. Joseph Catholic School Alliance was established about eight years ago to facilitate
        collaboration among the schools in serving the needs of the area. Msgr. Dierkes, prior
        pastor of St. Joseph Cathedral Parish, was a leader in promoting collaboration among the
        schools.
    11. In 2007-08, 66% of the June 2007 Catholic elementary school graduates enrolled at
        Bishop LeBlond High School. Less than one-third of St. James’ graduating class enrolled.
    12. Tuition at Bishop LeBlond High School is $4,300 in 2008-09. In 2006-07, 48% of high
        school income was from tuition and fees and 41% from contributions and fundraising.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                                 28
DRAFT February 2009
    13. Registered Catholic households in Deanery 12 (St. Joseph area) declined 11% from 2000
        to 2007. Infant baptisms among parishes in St. Joseph declined 14%, from an annual
        average of 113 (2000 to 2002) to an annual average of 96 (2005 to 2007).
                                     Registered         Annual Average
                                     Households         Infant Baptisms
        Parish                        2000    2007    2000-2002 2005-2007
        Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph     756    644            14        13
        Our Lady of Guadalupe          875    796            25        22
        St. Francis Xavier           1,100    996            28        27
        St. James                      650    635            18        20
        St. Mary                       290    225             9         2
        St. Patrick                    480    399            19        13

        Total                        4,151   3,695          113        96
        Percent Change                       -11%                   -14%


    14. In 2006-07, school support as a percent of offertory income ranged from 59% at
        St. Joseph Cathedral Parish to 74.4% at St. Francis Xavier Parish.
    15. If current trends continue, it appears unlikely that three elementary schools can be
        sustained long term.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Set enrollment and financial benchmarks for each of the three elementary
      schools. Give them three years to demonstrate their viability by reaching
      the benchmarks set for each year. Schools not meeting the benchmarks or
      not showing adequate progress on a yearly basis will be closed or
      consolidated.
        Strategies
        1.1      The Office of Catholic Schools should require each school to develop a strategic plan to
                 achieve the benchmarks. Benchmarks are not to be viewed as goals, but minimum
                 criteria to demonstrate viability. Schools should set higher goals and determine a path
                 toward achieving them.
        1.2      The Office of Catholic Schools should monitor each school’s progress on a yearly basis
                 and collaborate with the St. Joseph Catholic School Alliance to provide support and
                 assistance.
        1.3      If a school must close, the feasibility of continuing the parish early childhood program
                 should be studied.
   2. Efforts to promote collaboration and communication among the schools in
      St. Joseph will continue and be strengthened.
        Strategies
        2.1      The St. Joseph Catholic School Alliance should be utilized by the pastors and principals
                 as a vehicle for school collaboration in areas of planning, marketing, public relations and
                 development.
        2.2      A process for selection of alliance members, criteria for selection and terms of service
                 should be established by the pastors of the area parishes in consultation with the Office
                 of Catholic Schools. All St. Joseph area parishes should have representation.

Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                       29
DRAFT February 2009
       2.3   The St. Joseph Catholic School Alliance should identify strategies to strengthen the
             public image of Catholic school education PreK to 12 in the St. Joseph area, increase the
             value and ownership of Catholic education among all parishes, increase enrollment from
             parishes without schools, and attract additional funding for tuition assistance particularly
             at the high school level.
       2.4   Bishop LeBlond High School should initiate subject area meetings of high school and
             middle school teachers to promote coordination and articulation of curriculum and
             ensure a smooth transition for students from Catholic elementary school to the high
             school.
       2.5   Elementary school principals and teachers should be fully engaged in promoting
             Catholic education with a mindset of prekindergarten through grade 12. Every effort
             should be made at the elementary level to encourage 8th grade graduates to enroll at
             Bishop LeBlond High School.
   3. A common funding model for the schools in St. Joseph will be consistently
      implemented.
       Strategies
       3.1   The model for the elementary schools and the high school should be compatible, and the
             model should be in compliance with the overall plan for funding Catholic schools in the
             Diocese.
       3.2   All parishes in the St. Joseph area should make a financial investment in the Catholic
             schools in St. Joseph.
       3.3   The model should address the impact of the stewardship model on the high school and
             the change from stewardship to tuition for parents of potential high school students.
   4. Each school will strengthen its development efforts and increase its
      endowment fund in ways that are compatible with the collaborative efforts
      recommended in #2.
       Strategies
       4.1   Each school should initiate or continue an annual appeal to alumni and friends.
       4.2   A portion of all fundraising and gifts should be dedicated to growing the school’s
             endowment.
   5. Each school will develop strategies to ensure the student body reflects the
      diversity of the area.
       Strategy
       5.1   Connection should be made with leaders of the Hispanic community and the Diocesan
             Director of Hispanic Ministry to identify ways to attract more Hispanic students,
             especially to the high school.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    30
DRAFT February 2009
   6. The high school strategic plan will include specific steps to ensure the
      school operates within a balanced budget.
       Strategies
       6.1   Steps to increase the portion of annual school revenue from tuition should be included.
       6.2   Bishop LeBlond High School should consider using a third party tuition collection
             service to cut down on delinquent tuition and help regularize cash flow.
       6.3   Sources of additional funds for tuition assistance should be identified.
   7. A pastoral planning process will be initiated for the St. Joseph area parishes
      and schools.
       Rationale
       • Current trends do not support the long-term viability of three elementary schools.
       • Fewer elementary schools will impact future high school enrollment.
       • School-age population is projected to decrease in St. Joseph.
       • Registered households in the six St. Joseph parishes declined 11% from 2000 to 2007.
       • Infant baptisms in Deanery 12 declined 14% from an annual average of 113 (2000 to
         2002) to an annual average of 96 (2005 to 2007).
       • The sponsoring school parishes contributed from 59% to 74% of their contribution
         income to the support of the school in 2006-07.
       Strategies
       7.1   The process should be facilitated by someone with expertise from outside the area.
       7.2   The process should determine the future parish and school configurations which will be
             needed to serve the area in the future.
       7.3   Market research will be necessary to test assumptions and validate recommendations of
             the planning process.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                 31
DRAFT February 2009
XI. SOUTHWEST

A. Observations
                           K to 8     K to 8     Average         K to 8
                      Enrollment % Capacity    Class Size   Enrollment
    School               2007-08    2007-08       2007-08      2008-09
    Christ the King         114         57%           14           106
    St. Elizabeth           413         87%           22           394
    St. Peter               545         81%           20           535
    St. Thomas More         576         85%           21           562
    Visitation              527         81%           20           542

    Total                  2,175        81%           20         2,139


    1. In 2007-08 Christ the King School enrolled 114 students in grades K to 8 and operated at
       57% capacity with an average class size of 14. The school had one multi-age class. In
       2008-09, K to 8 enrollment dropped to 106 students, an overall decline of 54% from
       2002-03 to 2008-09.
    2. Registered households and ordinary income at Christ the King Parish decreased 26% and
       16% respectively from 2002-03 to 2006-07.
    3. St. Elizabeth School enrolled 413 students in grades K to 8 in 2007-08, operated at 87%
       capacity with two sections of each grade 1 through 8, and an average class size of 22.
       K to 8 enrollment for 2008-09 is 394, which is a decline of 6% from 2002-03 to 2008-09.
       The school has three sections of grade 1 in 2008-09 but does not have room currently for
       multiple triple-section grades.
    4. The largest classes at St. Elizabeth School in 2007-08 were in grades K, 2 and 3 with 50
       or more students.
    5. In 2007-08 enrollment in grades K to 8 at St. Peter School was 545 students and the
       school operated at 81% capacity. Enrollment in 2008-09 is 535 students, an overall
       decline of 5% from 2002-03 to 2008-09.
    6. From 2002-03 to 2006-07, registered households at St. Peter Parish decreased 23% while
       ordinary income increased 19%.
    7. In 2007-08 enrollment in grades K to 8 at St. Thomas More School was 576 students and
       the school operated at 85% capacity. Enrollment in 2008-09 is 562 students, an overall
       decline of 5% from 2002-03 to 2008-09.
    8. In 2007-08 Visitation School enrollment in grades K to 8 was 527 students and the school
       operated at 81% capacity. In 2008-09 enrollment increased to 542 students, an overall
       increase of 12% from 2002-03 to 2008-09.
    9. Visitation School is one of nine schools which has a higher enrollment in 2008-09 than in
       2002-03.
    10. Each of the schools in the Southwest pod is funded by a parish in a tithing model.
    11. St. Peter, St. Thomas More and Visitation Schools have three sections of each grade.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    32
DRAFT February 2009
    12. Catholic schools in Johnson County, Kansas attract students from this geographic area.
        This is especially true at the high school level since Bishop Miege High School is closer
        for many families than Archbishop O’Hara High School. In 2007-08 about 20% of the
        enrollment at Bishop Miege High School resided in Missouri.
    13. Cure of Ars Parish in Kansas also enrolls students who reside in Missouri and the parish attracts
        parishioners who live in Missouri. Some of the students who withdrew from Christ the King
        School now attend Cure of Ars School.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Benchmarks for viability will be established by the school leadership of
      Christ the King School in conjunction with the Office of Catholic Schools
      and approved by the Office of Catholic Schools. Benchmarks are not to be
      viewed as goals, but minimum criteria to demonstrate viability.
       Strategies
       1.1   An action plan should be developed to achieve these benchmarks over a three-year
             period.
       1.2   The school should set goals as a part of its strategic plan. Goals should extend beyond
             benchmarks, as the benchmarks are a minimum definition of viability.
       1.3   A three to five year financial projection should be prepared as one of the benchmarks.
       1.4   Progress in achieving the benchmarks should be monitored on a yearly basis by the
             Office of Catholic Schools. If the benchmarks cannot be met within a specified timeline
             and showing adequate annual progress, a decision to close or merge the school should be
             made. A possible merger with a nearby Catholic school should be considered.
   2. St. Elizabeth, St. Peter, St. Thomas More and Visitation Schools will each
      develop/update a strategic plan for the school to ensure capacity enrollment
      and fiscal stability.
       Strategies
       2.1   The plan should include multi-year enrollment and financial projections based on
             pertinent parish, school and demographic data.
       2.2   Strategies should be developed to promote a positive public image of the school in the
             community and to continue to attract a majority of parish families to enroll their
             children.
       2.3   Attention should be paid to investment in the program to continue to ensure high quality.
       2.4   Faculty and administration at these schools should actively encourage their students
             from the early grades to enroll in a Catholic high school in the Diocese of Kansas City-
             St. Joseph.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                   33
DRAFT February 2009
XII. RURAL SCHOOLS

A. Observations
    1. There are five Catholic elementary schools located in rural areas of the Diocese.
    2. Enrollment in these schools is low and in 2007-08 each school operated at or below 60%
       capacity in grades K to 8.
                                                   K to 8     Average    Per Pupil        K to 8
                                              Enrollment    Class Size       Cost    Enrollment
        School                  City             2007-08       2007-08    2006-07       2008-09
        Bishop Hogan Memorial   Chillicothe           75           15      $5,263            48
        St. Gregory Barbarigo   Maryville            112           12       5,641           108
        Holy Rosary             Clinton               83            9       3,986            83
        St. Mary                Montrose              30           10       4,867            33
        St. Mary                Nevada                13            3       6,062            11


    3. Typical enrollment and capacity goals do not apply in these rural schools due to the small
       pool of school-age children and limitations of the facilities. (For example, the Montrose
       public school has about 80 students in grades K through 12. Another example is the
       facility at St. Mary School in Montrose which does not have room for PreK.)
    4. With the exception of St. Mary in Montrose, each school had a few non-Catholic students
       enrolled in 2007-08.
    5. Of the Catholic students enrolled, 100% were from the sponsoring parish in 2007-08. In
       most cases, there are no neighboring parishes within a reasonable travel distance for
       students.
    6. Each school charges some tuition. The schools rely heavily on financial support from the
       parish and fundraising activities.
    7. In 2007-08, three of the schools had some or all multi-age classes.
    8. If these schools did not exist, families in the area would have no opportunity for a
       Catholic school education.

B. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Rural Catholic elementary schools will continue providing Catholic
      education as long as possible with the understanding they will continue as
      long as they offer a quality Catholic education and their parish does not
      assume debt to support the school.
       Strategies
       1.1    In consultation with the Office of Catholic Schools, each school should establish
              benchmarks for viability and annually monitor progress in achieving them. Benchmarks
              are not to be viewed as goals, but minimum criteria to demonstrate viability. Schools
              should set higher goals as part of a strategic plan.
       1.2    When enrollment is low, a rural school should adopt a multi-age model, as several have
              done, for some classes. Ongoing training should be provided for teachers in
              implementing this model.


Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                     34
DRAFT February 2009
       1.3   Schools should consciously use every opportunity to develop and maintain a positive
             image in the community which recognizes the religious nature and academic strength of
             the school program. These schools should also ensure that the community knows the
             school welcomes students of other faiths whose parents desire a faith-based education
             for their children.
       1.4   Each school should work closely with its sponsoring parish to actively minister to the
             needs of parish families and the broader community.
       1.5   The Office of Catholic Schools should give particular attention to these schools assisting
             them to achieve and maintain Missouri Nonpublic and North Central accreditation,
             identify and provide opportunities for professional development, seek out grants and
             acquire technology for instruction and communication.
       1.6   Each school should develop and maintain a good relationship with the local public
             school district to ensure equitable access to federal, state and local funds and services
             available to non-public schools.
       1.7   If a rural school is closed, the early childhood program should be reviewed separately
             from the elementary program to determine its sustainability.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    35
DRAFT February 2009
XIII. CENTRAL CITY
A. Observations
    1. Three central city elementary schools have closed since 2003, leaving four remaining
       schools in 2008-09.
    2. From 2002-03 to 2008-09, the six central city elementary schools experienced a 52%
       enrollment decline in grades K to 8.
    3. 2007-08 and 2008-09 enrollments for the four remaining schools are as follows:
                                      K to 8     K to 8     Average         K to 8
                                 Enrollment % Capacity    Class Size   Enrollment
        School                      2007-08    2007-08       2007-08      2008-09
        Holy Cross                     170         76%           19           167
        Our Lady of Guadalupe           90         72%           18            92
        Our Lady of the Angels         139         70%           17           151
        St. Stephen                     96         64%           16            86

        Total                          495         71%           18           496

       These schools operated at 71% capacity in 2007-08, with 205 empty seats.
    4. Our Lady of Guadalupe School serves students in grades K through 5. Our Lady of the
       Angels School serves students in PreK through grade 8. Generally, about half of the
       students completing grade 5 at Our Lady of Guadalupe School continue in grade 6 at Our
       Lady of the Angels School.
    5. In 2008-09, 89% of the students in these four schools are Catholic. Seventy-four percent
       (74%) of the enrollment are Hispanic. These schools serve students living in the urban
       core where many families are low income.
    6. In 2008-09 each of these schools charges tuition ranging from $2,775 to $3,100 for the
       first Catholic child.
    7. Our Lady of the Angels and Our Lady of Guadalupe Schools are supported by the six
       parishes in Deanery 2 and Holy Cross and St. Stephen Schools are supported by the five
       parishes in Deanery 3. While supported by the same parishes, each of the schools in
       Deanery 3 is a parish school. The schools in Deanery 2 operate independently under a
       canonical administrator.
    8. The parishes are limited in their ability to support these schools and the schools rely
       heavily on the Central City School Fund and other third-party sources for income. The
       CCSF contributed over $5.0 million to central city schools from 2003-04 to 2008-09.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                   36
DRAFT February 2009
B. Mission of the Central City Schools
The mission of the central city schools is similar to the mission for each of the other Catholic
elementary schools in the Diocese, and consistent with the mission of the Office of Catholic
Schools. In light of their unique history and geographic locations, they also have these particular
aspects to their mission:
    • To provide a welcoming environment to immigrant populations.
    • To support existing Catholic populations within the immigrant and poor communities of
        Kansas City, and evangelize to those who have not embraced the Catholic faith.
    • To provide a visible and important example of diocesan ministry to Kansas City’s urban
        core and the poor who live there.
    • To provide excellent opportunities in a geographic area which does not have sufficient
        alternative opportunities.

C. Goals and Recommended Strategies
    1. The Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph will clarify and clearly communicate
       the mission of the central city schools.
        Strategy
        1.1   Schools should be an effective tool of evangelization for local parishes. The ministry of
              Catholic schools should help transform the culture.
        1.2   Central City schools should be viewed as “pillars of the community.” They should be a
              light for the Gospel and places of stability and hope.
        1.3   The Bishop in consultation with the appropriate advisory groups should determine and
              communicate an understanding of this mission.
    2. Central city schools will have high quality, comprehensive programs and
       equitable access to the educational resources needed.
        Strategies
        2.1   Provide quality schools that supply the programs and services expected of all Catholic
              schools throughout the Diocese.
        2.2   Only certified teachers should be employed. They should set high expectations for
              students.
        2.3   Students who do not speak English at home should have access to support services such
              as ESL, reading assistance and math assistance.
        2.4   Music, art, physical education and global language (as appropriate) should be a regular
              part of the curriculum.
        2.5   Particular attention should be given to enabling families to be actively involved in the
              education of their children.
        2.6   Up-to-date technology should be available and used to support teaching and learning.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                    37
DRAFT February 2009
   3. Enrollment in Central City schools will reflect the diversity of the local
      community by reaching a racially and ethnically diverse population.
       Strategies
       3.1   Schools should have programs and resources to meet the unique needs of their respective
             school communities, i.e. non-English-speaking, remedial services, counselors, parenting
             skills, nutritional and health services.
       3.2   New methods to recruit students from the Hispanic community should be identified with
             help from the leaders of the Hispanic community and professionals who know the
             community.
       3.3   Leaders from the Hispanic community should be identified and cultivated to serve in
             leadership roles as board members and should participate in development, marketing,
             planning and other activities.
       3.4   A position should be established to work with the principals of the central city schools to
             strengthen community relations, public relations, recruitment, marketing and
             development efforts.
       3.5   School administrators should seek to increase the number of bilingual staff in the schools.

   4. Update current covenant agreements among parishes who support the schools.
       Strategies
       4.1   Adopt common language. Use a template developed by the Office of Catholic Schools.
       4.2   Seek endorsement and ownership from parishes involved.

   DEANERY 2: OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE AND OUR LADY OF ANGELS
   SCHOOLS
   5. Establish Our Lady of Guadalupe School and Our Lady of the Angels School
      as two campuses of one institution with a single administration and a
      combined budget.
       Strategies
       5.1   Identify a principal and an assistant principal for the combined entity with clear job
             descriptions delineating responsibilities for finances, public relations, academic program, etc.
       5.2   The principal and assistant principal must be present and visible on both campuses each
             week.
       5.3   Faculties should have joint faculty meetings and work closely together to ensure similar
             expectations for students and a common curriculum.
       5.4   Staff development opportunities should be conducted jointly.
       5.5   Staff and educational resources should be shared by the two schools whenever feasible.
       5.6   An active school board should be established to advise and assist the principal and
             canonical administrator. Board members should be recruited for their expertise and the
             board must have a meaningful role in leadership and planning which should be described
             in the bylaws.


Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                   38
DRAFT February 2009
   6. Benchmarks for the viability of the combined program and each campus will
      be established and approved by the Office of Catholic Schools.
      Benchmarks are not to be viewed as goals, but minimum criteria to
      demonstrate viability.
       Strategies
       6.1   An action plan should be developed to achieve these benchmarks over a three-year
             period.
       6.2   The school should set goals as a part of its strategic plan. Goals should extend beyond
             benchmarks, as the benchmarks are a minimum definition of viability.
       6.3   A three to five year financial projection should be prepared as one of the benchmarks. It
             should provide a plan to pay teachers according to the recommended scale, show
             investment to improve the academic program and demonstrate a balanced budget.
       6.4   Progress in achieving the benchmarks should be monitored on a yearly basis by the
             Office of Catholic Schools. If the benchmarks cannot be met within a specified timeline
             and showing adequate annual progress, the school should operate on one campus.
       6.5   Strategies to attract new students from a broader geographic area should be identified
             along with strategies to retain current students through grade 8.
       6.6   Key members of the Church and community served by the school should be invited to
             participate in developing an overall strategic plan for the school.
       6.7   Collaboration with the Guadalupe Center should be fostered and their assistance enlisted
             in promoting the school.

   DEANERY 3: HOLY CROSS SCHOOL AND ST. STEPHEN ACADEMY
   7. The recommendations of the Deanery 3 study related to Holy Cross and
      St. Stephen Schools will be implemented. (Reference the Pastoral Plan for
      Parishes and Schools in Deanery 3 pp. 18-20)
       Strategies
       7.1   The Office of Catholic Schools should evaluate progress in achieving the benchmarks
             for viability. If adequate progress is not made, the Pastoral Plan recommends that Holy
             Cross School and St. Stephen Academy merge to form a new Deanery 3 school at the
             Holy Cross site.
       7.2   Tuition, fee schedules and procedures for tuition assistance should be the same at both
             schools.
       7.3   A three-year financial projection should be developed for each school based on realistic
             assumptions. Projections should include adequate funds for facility maintenance,
             program improvements, marketing and development efforts. Teacher salaries should
             follow the diocesan recommended scale and the budget must be balanced.
       7.4   The schools should work closely together. Areas for collaboration include marketing
             and recruitment, enrichment opportunities and development/fundraising.
       7.5   A single school board should be established for Deanery 3 to provide additional
             expertise and assistance for Holy Cross School and St. Stephen Academy. This board
             should be involved in planning, budgeting and advancement for the schools. If a single

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             board is not possible while the schools operate as separate parish schools, two boards
             should be formed which meet jointly on a specified periodic basis.
       7.6   Staff and educational resources should be shared by the two schools whenever possible.
             Serious consideration should be given to sharing the services of a bookkeeper and
             establishing a central business office for the two schools.
D. Facilities
   1. Funding will be sought for the capital investment needed to ensure that
      facilities in the central city schools are sufficient for quality programming,
      safe, attractive and well maintained.
       Strategies
       1.1   The review completed by the Offices of Property Management and recommendations
             from local principals should be supplemented by professional architectural, mechanical
             and electrical experts.
       1.2   Each school needs a master facility plan to ensure the operation of modern, attractive
             and safe facilities. The plan should include renovations, upgrades and expansions
             needed to achieve the vision for excellent Catholic schools. The plan should provide a
             reasonable time frame and budget.

   An initial assessment of the four Central City schools was completed by the Diocesan Offices
   of Property Management in January 2009. This review and supplemental information from
   the school principals generated the following list of capital needs:
   a. Our Lady of Angels School (built @ 1955)
      • New energy-efficient windows on floors 1 and 2
      • Upgrade of electrical system
      • Upgrade of plumbing and renovation of restrooms
      • Replace ceiling and tile in cafeteria
      • Install central air
      • Upgrade lighting
      • Remove and replace asbestos tile
      • Repair roof
      • General cleaning and painting
      • Provide exterior signage
      • Provide new playground
      • Provide permanent space for art, music, expanded library and support services
      • Remodel kitchen
      • Install new gym floor and update gym area
      • Install security cameras
      • Upgrade technology
      (No overall cost estimate was given for renovating this facility)




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   b. Our Lady of Guadalupe School (built @ 1915)
      • Provide new roof within 5 years
      • Tuck pointing
      • General cleaning and painting
      • Upgrade plumbing
      • Renovate restrooms
      • Upgrade interior and exterior lighting
      • Replace carpeting and add new tile flooring in some areas
      • Install energy-efficient windows
      • Provide new external signage
      • Resurface and fence playground
      • Renovate kitchen
      • Replace bus and purchase a van
      • Upgrade technology
      (No overall cost estimate was given for renovating this facility)
   c. Holy Cross School (built 1961)
      • General cleaning and painting
      • Install new boiler and AC system
      • Upgrade electrical system
      • Upgrade plumbing
      • Renovate restrooms
      • Make ADA compliant and add elevator
      • Upgrade to meet current life safety, environmental, building and fire codes
      • Cafeteria upgrade
      • Cosmetic improvements to corridors, classrooms, stairwells and offices
      • Demolish former convent
      • Upgrade interior and exterior lighting
      • Install energy-efficient windows
      • Install new flooring
      • Install new fire alarm system
      • Replace classroom furniture
      • Upgrade technology
      • Improve security and add fencing
      • Upgrade landscaping
      (Based on an $86 per square foot cost, approximately $2,000,000 would be needed to
      renovate this building.)
       Possibilities to consider:
       • Offices across front of building
       • Update library
       • New kitchen and cafeteria
       • Acquire nearby property for parking and expansion
       • Add a second floor over a new kitchen/cafeteria for parish and school use



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   d. St. Stephen Academy (built 1959)
      • Upgrade electrical and plumbing to meet current codes
      • Make ADA compliant
      • Demolish former convent and develop playground area (demolition $25,000)
      • General cleaning and painting
      (Complete professional building assessment recommended. Based on a $70 per square
      foot cost, approximately $1,720,000 would be needed to renovate this building.)




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XIV. FACILITIES

A. Goals and Recommended Strategies
   1. Every school will have a long-range facilities plan as part of its strategic
      plan.
       Strategies
       1.1   The facilities plan should identify both repairs and improvements needed to keep the
             school current with educational needs, safe, attractive and well maintained.
       1.2   The Office of Property Management should provide technical assistance to schools in
             developing a master facility plan.
       1.3   Planning for school facilities should be integrated with planning for parish needs.
       1.4   All schools should be in compliance with applicable state, municipal and diocesan safety
             codes and policies.
       1.5   For parish schools, the Parish Council and Finance Council will be expected to approve
             a long-range facilities plan for the school as part of a long-range master plan for the
             parish.
   2. A capital funding plan will accompany each facility plan.
       Strategies
       2.1   The parish will determine with the school how each capital project will be funded. An
             approach is for the school to set aside at least 3% of the operating budget each year in a
             capital reserve fund. This may be appropriate when the school will have ongoing
             responsibility for major capital projects.
       2.2   When capital projects are the responsibility of the school, accumulate adequate savings
             in a reserve fund restricted for school purposes.




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XV. FUNDING CATHOLIC SCHOOLS

A. Introduction
Fulfilling the mission of Catholic education depends upon having the financial resources
necessary to deliver quality educational programs and keep Catholic schools affordable.
Achieving and maintaining financial health in Catholic schools is one of the more significant
challenges facing the Catholic Church.
Several models for funding schools are used throughout the Diocese. After careful study, it is
apparent that the model used in many schools will not provide the income necessary to achieve the
vision of this strategic plan. There is wide variation in the models used and the way they are
implemented. The financial plan will set forth principles and acceptable practices that will lead to
a funding model in each school that raises the potential for that school to achieve its mission and
sustain its mission for the long term. The funding plan will recognize different areas of the
Diocese require flexibility in their model given history and local circumstances.

B. Assumptions for Financial Planning
The following assumptions were used in forming the financial plan for schools.
1. Catholic schools are a mission of the entire Church.
2. Catholic schools must be more available than they are today in terms of being financially
   affordable for more families.
    Bishop Finn, Diocesan teacher in-service October 6, 2008
3. Revenue must grow in order to realize the future vision for schools which calls for superior
   academics, competitive compensation for faculty, quality facilities, up-to-date technology and so on.
4. Full enrollment is essential for cost effective operations. Affordability for parents and
   parishes is tied directly to cost per pupil.
5. Parish income will generally increase at a slower rate than the increase in the cost of Catholic
   schools. Parish subsidy under a traditional formula will slowly fall further behind the need.
6. Every parish will provide financial support to Catholic education in some form.
7. Parishes with schools will generally not be able to give a larger share of their collections to
   Catholic schools.
8. Parish financial support should not be taken for granted. The case to support Catholic
   education must continue to be made and the investment of the parish must be accounted for.
9. “For the support of schools, a consistent plan for financing schools is developed across the
   Diocese.” Quote from Bishop Finn, Diocesan teacher in-service October 6, 2008. Funding for
   Catholic schools will follow several “best practice” models that fit a particular region.
10. The funding model adopted by schools serving the same area should not result in competition
    among schools for enrollment or fundraising.
11. Development/advancement will be a larger share of school revenue in the future. It must
    grow in a manner that is compatible with parish stewardship and the Church’s teaching on
    stewardship.


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12. Development/advancement is a long-term investment. Often it takes three to five years to
    produce significant results.
13. Catholic schools will be fiscally healthier with an accounting system that rewards good
    management and discourages poor practices.
14. Schools and the parishes that sponsor them need to be accountable for sound fiscal
    management, compliance with government regulations and adherence to diocesan regulations
    and directives.
15. Catholic school financial accounting should protect the school in the event the parish has
    financial problems.

C. Terminology
Common terms used when talking about funding for Catholic schools are:
Stewardship: in a very simplistic form is following the Lord Jesus Christ as His disciple, being
grateful for the gifts we receive and being eager to use them wisely and responsibly. It is a life-
long journey that rearranges our priorities according to God’s priorities. Stewardship is not a
funding model, rather a philosophy and theology.
Sacrificial giving: is an outgrowth of being Christian stewards. Sacrificial refers to giving that is
proportionate to what God gives us. It comes from our substance and is not limited to our
abundance.
Tithing: is making a financial contribution of 5% to 10% to benevolent causes which include the
Church. A common formula for tithing in the Diocese is 5% to the parish, 2% to the Diocese and
3% for other causes. Many variations exist among parishes.
Development: is a comprehensive, strategic program of institutional advancement that results in the
growth of funding and support for an institution. Taken from Glossary of Catholic Educational Governance
Terms, Tim Dwyer, NCEA.

D. Preferred Funding Models
Several models for funding Catholic schools are currently in use among parishes and schools in
the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph. These models were carefully examined for their relative
strengths and weaknesses and their ability to achieve the vision for Catholic education. That
vision is for schools to be characterized by strong Catholic identity and provide superior
comprehensive academic programs in a manner that is affordable for parishes and for parents who
desire a Catholic school education for their children.
Stewardship is necessary and essential to the viability of every parish. Under any model of
funding, a stewardship parish will more successfully sustain the ministry of Catholic education.

PREFERRED MODEL: COST-BASED TUITION AND NEEDS-BASED AID
Description
Cost per pupil is determined in a consistent manner and serves as the basis for setting tuition.
Tuition is set at cost per pupil or at a percentage discount from cost per pupil with a plan to close
the gap over time. Current subsidy, fundraising, and development income are directed toward
needs-based aid. Aid is funded at a sufficient level to make tuition affordable for families across
the economic spectrum. Tuition for a particular family is set on a sliding scale depending on the
family’s income, ability to pay and need for assistance.

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Specific elements:
• Clearly define costs related to annual operating expenses and specific to the educational program.
• All schools move tuition to full cost of education over five years. Schools also operate at 90%
   or more of their enrollment capacity, thereby controlling the cost per pupil.
• Determination of financial need follows a consistent formula across the Diocese. Parents
   would generally qualify for the same level of tuition assistance from one school to another.
• In making a transition from a high subsidy model, use the first year of implementation for
   education and planning.
• Determine a budget for capital improvements and special program enhancements. Determine
   what portion will be included in the general operating budget and what will be funded through
   a capital improvements budget.
• Multi-child discount is phased out and replaced by tuition assistance, again over the five-year
   implementation.
• A handbook with procedures, guidelines and policies is developed to ensure all schools follow
   best practices.
• The manner of implementation can be altered when special circumstances apply and approval
   is given. A combination of the following could cause some adjustments to implementation:
   very high percentage of the population is low income, an exception is made for small class
   size, parish giving is unusually strong, the school is in an area of the Diocese isolated from
   other schools where unique circumstances exist.

Advantages
1. Tuition aid dollars are directed to families with need. Families who do not have a need do not
   continue to receive subsidies.
2. The actual price of a Catholic education to families is spread across a much wider range.
3. Tuition income is generally higher because a portion of school families are able to pay more.
4. More tuition assistance makes Catholic schools affordable and accessible for more students
   who may not otherwise be able to access Catholic schools.
5. The rationale for providing parish funding or subsidies is clear and compelling. Parishes are
   now asked to help those in need, a concept that fits with parish mission.
6. The school is financially more stable in circumstances where parish giving does not grow with
   school expenses or parish subsidy becomes too great for the parish compromising parish
   vitality.

Principles for Success
1. The cost of education is clearly defined and the accounting system makes this clarification
   easy. An accurate cost per pupil is calculated. Educational costs are isolated from other costs
   related to non-educational items such as fundraising or services covered by fees like cafeteria.
   Accounting is the same for all schools in this model.
2. Schools maintain a plan for capital improvements and educational enhancements. Development
   programs are also involved with funding these needs as part of a strategic plan for the school. A
   capital reserve fund can be part of the operating budget, but may not cover all capital needs over time.


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3. The cost of education joined with the value of a Catholic education is consistently and
   repeatedly communicated so that current and prospective parents have a complete understanding
   of the value they receive for the cost they pay and the difference between their cost and the
   actual cost.
4. The pastor and parish leaders give regular support for the mission of the school and encourage
   parents to enroll their children.
5. Stewardship is strong in the parish. Stewardship deepens the spiritual life of the parish and, as
   one of its fruits, provides generous funding for families who wish to attend a Catholic school.
6. A strong development program is in place to generate additional funds for needs-based aid.
   Building a Catholic education endowment is part of the development program.
7. A transition to this model is implemented over several years. A carefully devised plan is
   developed before implementation begins.
8. All schools move together and at the same pace to avoid wide disparities in tuition with
   neighboring schools.
9. Needs-based assistance is generously funded and expanded to serve families across the
   economic spectrum.
10. The parish makes a generous financial commitment to support families through needs-based aid.
11. Language and terminology used to describe and market tuition assistance is accepted by the
    community. Cultural sensitivities to receiving aid are overcome.
12. Needs-based aid is handled in a confidential manner. Aid is given based on objective criteria
    and a third party is used to assess need. Families of moderate and low income who have
    practiced good fiscal diligence over time are not unduly penalized for having savings or
    avoiding debt.
13. The quality of the school program and reputation for value is present and widely known. The
    school can demonstrate a superior value for the tuition stated as compared to the educational
    alternatives available to parents in the community.
14. Provide an emergency fund for unexpected needs such as a death in the family or loss of employment.
15. Develop a five-year financial projection showing how the model will be implemented over time.
16. Distinguish expenses that are funded by the general operating budget from capital
    improvements or enhancements that will be funded by a capital budget. Development and
    fundraising are generally the means for funding these non-operating costs.

Practices to Avoid
1. A sudden change to a cost-based tuition can result in enrollment declines.
2. Needs-based aid that is underfunded will shrink participation from middle class families in
   Catholic education.
3. Not allowing time to communicate and educate prior to implementation of a change.
4. Shift to needs-based aid without a well-administered tuition aid program marked by
   confidentiality, clearly understood materials, prompt and responsive communications with
   parents and a budget for marketing so that everyone is invited to seek aid and determine a
   tuition level that is affordable for their situation.

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E. Alternative Funding Models
ALTERNATIVE MODEL A: TUITION PLUS TITHING
Description
Students receive a discounted tuition rate when the family is a member of the parish and tithing to
the parish. Tuition is less than cost per pupil. The difference in cost is made up by parish
offertory collections, fundraising and development. Parish subsidy is generally high. It is
sustained by an expectation of tithing; that is school families give a prescribed percentage of their
income to the parish. While the request for a tithe may be made of all parishioners, generally
parents with children in the school are required to give and in many parishes the level of giving is
verified. Some tuition assistance may be given to families who cannot afford the tuition.
Problems
•   Parish subsidy is used to provide a tuition discount for all school families, including a portion
    who could and would pay more.
•   Parish subsidy is not directly used to help families with the greatest need; nor is it used in a
    manner that directly increases enrollment or retains students.
•   Tithing is a fundraising model, not part of a larger stewardship program.
•   Low tuition can be interpreted as lower quality.
•   Tuition and tithing is often a low tuition with high subsidy from the parish. Parish subsidy is
    propped up by required tithing.
•   Families give while their children are in school and then stop giving when the children
    graduate. Their commitment to tithing is more for the education of their children than the
    mission of the Church.
•   Some people feel like the Church is more interested in their money than their souls.
    Fundraising rises above conversion as the thrust of stewardship.

ALTERNATIVE MODEL B: TITHING
Description
Parish families pay a donation to the parish and the parish funds the school. Parish families do not
pay tuition, although they may pay fees. An intentional program of education about tithing/
stewardship program is in place. Parents are generally asked to tithe a certain percent. While the
request for a tithe may be made of all parishioners, generally parents with children in the school
are required to give and in many parishes the level of giving is verified. Verification takes various
forms.
Problems
•   Parish giving is not keeping up with the rise in cost of Catholic schools.
•   Lack of growth in parish stewardship can strangle school budgets resulting in unacceptable
    compromises to a quality educational program. Or lack of parish revenue can strangle parish
    budgets and parish ministry suffers for lack of staff and funding.
•   Tithing programs are maintained at various levels of effectiveness, sometimes moving
    stronger or weaker depending on pastoral leadership.
•   Over time, the energy and leadership to maintain a strong tithing program can wane. Pastoral
    support is often difficult to sustain with changes in pastors.

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•   Parish subsidy is used to provide a tuition discount for all school families, including a portion
    who could and would pay more.
•   Parish subsidy is not directly used to help families with the greatest need; nor is it used in a
    manner that directly increases enrollment or retains students.
•   Families receive services, but may not do their share to support the parish.
•   Families give while their children are in school and then stop giving when the children
    graduate. Their commitment to tithing is more for the education of their children than the
    mission of the Church.
•   Some people feel like the Church is more interested in their money than their souls.
    Fundraising rises above conversion as the thrust of stewardship.
•   Tithing is not an adequate source of funding for parishes where the parishioners do not have
    the wealth necessary to pay for parish ministries and a quality Catholic school. This is
    especially true when a large portion of the parish is low income.
•   The theological teaching that should be present in tithing is sometimes weak or absent.
    Parishioners will get different messages if they move from one parish to another. Tithing is
    not necessarily the same as stewardship.
•   Tithing becomes confused with tuition. It is not permissible according to the IRS to take a tax
    deduction for any amount designated as a donation to the parish that is a special requirement
    of school families to enroll their children in a Catholic school.

ALTERNATIVE MODEL C: STEWARDSHIP
Description
Stewardship funding commonly refers to a philosophy of funding total parish ministry, of which
the Catholic school is an integral part. Stewardship is unique because it is not a funding model,
rather a philosophy based on biblical theology that shapes what it means to be Catholic. A
stewardship model must not become synonymous with a “free school” as the cost of Catholic
education is significant. Understood correctly, every individual in the parish, not just school
families, is accountable to God and under an obligation to live as a Christian steward.
Stewardship is far reaching, calling upon all baptized Catholics to submit to the Lordship of Jesus
Christ and give generously of their time, talent and treasure in ways that honor God. Giving is
made in proportion to God’s gifts to us. Out of gratefulness for the gifts we have received, we are
eager to use them wisely and responsibly to further God’s kingdom. Giving is sacrificial and
from the first fruits in terms of both money and personal service.
Problems
•   Very few parishes have a history of sustaining growth in their offertory at a level that can
    fully fund the inflationary cost of Catholic education. Catholic education is generally
    increasing at 6% per year.
•   The leadership of laity and clergy is not consistent. Reproducing leaders who will sustain
    vibrant stewardship has not been possible for every parish.
•   Parents sometimes confuse stewardship with free tuition. Constant education is necessary.




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Advantages
1. Stewardship theology enhances spiritual life in a parish. Parishes are more vibrant as a result
   of higher levels of participation and utilization of the gifts of God’s people.
2. Stewardship forms disciples of Christ.
3. True stewardship leads to a lifetime of giving.
4. Stewardship is not limiting in how much a person may give in support of the Church and
   Catholic education.
5. The entire Catholic community takes responsibility for the education and formation of the
   next generation.

Principles for Success
1. A clear commitment to teaching and living stewardship in the parish is made by the pastor and
   regularly reaffirmed by him along with the parish pastoral council, the parish finance council,
   school board and others serving in leadership positions.
2. Stewardship education embraces a holistic and biblical view of time, talent and treasure.
3. Many opportunities are provided to parishioners to give of their time and talent in service.
   The leadership style of the pastor and staff encourages a high level of participation and
   ownership for the ministries of the parish.
4. An annual program of stewardship education is planned each year.
5. The parish has a stewardship committee. The pastor works with the stewardship committee
   and other staff to plan and execute a stewardship program.
6. The full cost of education is communicated to parents.
7. Stewardship giving increases annually and at a rate that keeps pace with the annual increases
   in the cost of education and cost of parish ministry.
8. A long-term commitment is needed from the Diocese to appoint pastors who embrace
   stewardship, will teach stewardship and provide leadership for stewardship in the parish.
9. Stewardship is accompanied by a conscious effort of evangelization. The parish recognizes
   some parents may take advantage of the parish, but allows room for the grace of conversion.
10. Stewardship communicates expectations but does not put a cap on people’s generosity.
11. A high percentage of parishioners actively give their time, talent and treasure.
12. Annual growth is seen in both the average gift per parish household as well as total dollars
    received.
13. Giving to the parish provides sufficient funding for all parish ministries so that parish vitality
    is strong above and beyond the ministry of the Catholic school.
14. The parish maintains or builds some reserve so the parish can remain financially strong
    through times of leadership transition or a variety of unexpected changes.
15. Stewardship education is expected of all parishioners and does not single out school families.




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Practices to Avoid
A number of practices presently used by school parishes should be eliminated. These practices
lead to confusion about the real purpose of stewardship, raise ethical questions, are
counterproductive to achieving the long-range goals of stewardship or result in a very high parish
subsidy and an effort to fund this subsidy by placing requirements on school families.
1. Any policy or practice that has different expectations for parish membership for school
    families than for other parish households.
2. Payment of a tithe or financial gift to the parish for services, specifically for a Catholic school
   education, is not permissible.
3. Asking for a tithe with a specified percentage tends to communicate the percentage is the goal
   for a family to give. Catholics should be challenged to give in proportion to the blessing and
   riches that they have which for some people should be much higher than 5% and could be more
   than 10%.
4. Verification of giving from school families while not conducting the same verification of all
   parish members is not an acceptable practice. In general, verification policies compromise a
   holistic understanding of stewardship.
5. A pledge should not turn into a requirement or become a bill to be paid. A pledge should
   remain a commitment made in good faith.

F. Recommendations Regarding Geography
1. Schools in the same geographic area should operate with the same funding model. This is
   necessary to reduce confusion for parents and avoid unnecessary competition because some
   parents will shop for the best deal. The following areas are identified as needing to operate
   schools with the same model:
   a. Central City
   b. Northland
   c. Southeast and Southwest
   d. St. Joseph

G. Implementation Strategies
1. The Finance Office and the Office of Catholic Schools should work together to create a manual
   for local parishes and schools to guide them in financial planning for schools. Areas the manual
   needs to address are:
    • Method by which tuition is set each year
    • Method for determining parish support
    • Definition of cost per pupil for educational costs
    • Financial reporting throughout the year
    • Calendar for budgeting, reporting, etc.
    • Salary guidelines
    • Best practices
2. Every school should develop a three to five year financial projection to aid in implementing the
   funding plan for schools.

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3. The Finance Office and Office of Catholic Schools should provide professional assistance to
   parishes and schools who need help with setting up the tools for financial planning.
4. A timeline should be established for each region of the Diocese to follow in moving from
   current funding practices to a cost-based/needs-based model.

H. Tuition and Stewardship
1. Stewardship education must continually be developed in every parish, not as a funding model
   but as a part of Catholic identity.
2. Each school should formulate a five-year plan for increasing tuition each year with the goal of
   covering a larger share of expenses until tuition reflects full cost. Schools must keep in mind
   cost is a moving target based on expenses and enrollment.
3. After tuition has been adjusted upward to reflect cost, it should continue to increase each year,
   minimally 4%.
4. Move away from multiple child discounts. Rather, build multiple child discounts into the
   tuition assistance formula.
5. Retain a portion of tuition assistance funds in reserve for last minute admissions and for
   unexpected emergencies. Have an expedited process to award tuition aid in special situations.
6. Generally charge families one cost in tuition that is all inclusive and minimize the use of fees.
   The application fee can be an exception to encourage parents to follow-through on their intent
   to enroll their child. While an application fee is acceptable, a technology fee, book fee or
   activity fee would not be acceptable.
7. Every school and parish should institute a tuition covenant with parents to create a clear
   understanding of the commitment of the school to the family, the commitment of the parish to
   the family, and the commitment of the family to support the education of their children.
   a. A tuition covenant document should be developed by the Office of Catholic Schools to be
       used as a template in all schools.
   b. Guidelines should be given to help parishes define an active supporting parish family
       (matters such as parish registration, contribution, parish participation) in a manner that is
       fair and consistent throughout the Diocese. Care must be taken to avoid any violation of
       IRS rules with regard to parish contributions.
   c. Utilization of the covenant should be part of the annual in-service for principals and
       pastors.
   d. All parishes and their schools should require parents to attend an annual meeting to
       explain the covenant, cost of education, expectations, and so on. Pastors should be part of
       the meeting as this is an opportunity to build commitment to the parish.




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I. Tuition Assistance
Tuition assistance is the mechanism by which Catholic schools will serve their target population.
The funding model for Catholic education is aligned with the mission because aid is targeted to
families based on mission versus economics.
1. Invest in marketing and communication of the new tuition model, especially in the early years
   of implementation. Make a clear break from the old tuition assistance program to the new.
2. Seek new terminology to market tuition assistance programs in the future. New language will
   help to bridge the cultural barriers that keep parents from asking for tuition aid.
3. Tuition assistance must be available to every income group for whom tuition is too much.
   Schools need to know their demographics, and intentionally reserve assistance funds for each
   income strata they wish to attract.
4. The concept of unfunded tuition assistance should be explored when funding for tuition
   assistance from typical sources runs out. This makes sense when the net of tuition collected
   exceeds the cost of education of that additional child. Care must be taken to ensure families
   pay their fair share. And care must be taken to ensure the tuition collected exceeds the
   marginal cost of educating the additional child. In addition, this means of funding must be
   limited in scope so the school does not carry additional costs for which it lacks revenue.
5. The means by which tuition assistance is marketed and administered should be adapted to
   each community. For example, predominantly Hispanic parents who are first generation
   immigrants often must overcome unique cultural barriers to a Catholic education. Or a middle
   income family unaccustomed to qualifying for tuition aid must overcome a predisposition to
   paying discounted tuition without any help.

J. Parish Investment in Catholic Schools
1. Parish subsidy should be thought of as parish investment in the parish mission of Catholic
   education.
2. Every parish with a school is strongly encouraged and expected to make a significant
   investment in Catholic education each year. That investment will transition over time from
   direct operating subsidy with little restriction for its use, to tuition assistance with full
   accountability for its use.
3. Parish investment in the future should be predetermined by the parish and set into the school
   budget rather than being a plug factor that balances the school budget.
4. If a parish school operating under a tuition model has a surplus at the end of the year, the
   surplus should remain with the school.
5. Large surpluses could result in an adjustment to parish investment in a following year.
   Schools should be allowed to build some savings so they can make up for shortfalls and not
   surprise the parish with a requirement for unexpected subsidy. Successful fundraising should
   not necessarily revert to the parish for non-school purposes, but should remain in school
   savings with the option of being spent another year. Surpluses could be designated for any of
   the following purposes:
   • Fund additional tuition assistance in future years
   • Add to a facility reserve fund for facility improvements or capital repairs
   • Add to school savings for rainy day or future programs

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    •   Make contribution to school endowment
6. Schools should make an annual report to their sponsoring parish(es) showing the use of funds
   and value for the investment. Open accountability and good fiscal management are important to
   retaining parish support.
7. Parishes should regularly support capital funding initiatives as part of a long-range plan for
   the parish and school. Major projects requiring capital funding should be planned on a three
   to five-year cycle or as needed. Enhancements and upgrades to school facilities should be an
   integral part of parish facility planning.

K. Support for Catholic Education from All Parishes
1. All parishes will support the ministry of Catholic education. Parishes will fall into one of
   these categories:
    a. Parish with parish school
       Will have an annual investment budgeted for the school
    b. Parishes with covenant agreements to sponsor a regional school
       Will have an agreement for support of a specified school
    c. Parish without a school but with an agreement with a neighboring school
       Will have an agreement for support of a specified school or schools. Agreements will
       follow a standard template.
    d. Parish without a school and no agreement with a neighboring school
       Will give a percentage of parish income for Catholic education to be added to the annual
       assessment and collected by the Diocese
2. Parishes not directly supporting a Catholic elementary school and for who a Catholic school is
   within reasonable proximity of the parish, establish a formal written agreement with these
   parishes that will make Catholic education available. The agreement would specify
   admissions priority, financial support, and other terms. All agreements should follow a
   common template developed by the Office of Catholic Schools. The Office of Catholic
   Schools would recommend parish/school combinations based on current enrollment patterns,
   historical ties and geography, with some parishes having more than one school.
3. Agreements between non-school parishes and school parishes should provide financial
   support to expand tuition assistance rather than subsidize operations. The non-school parish
   should make an annual investment regardless of the number of students enrolled. Financial
   assistance should be available to parish families through the school students attend, not the
   sending parish. All Catholic families should have the same eligibility for tuition assistance.
4. Agreements between parishes should address the following issues:
   a. Conditions under which the funding is reviewed and possibly adjusted
   b. Representation of supporting parishes on school boards or committees
   c. Expectations for a mutually beneficial relationship beyond funding
   d. Minimum funding expectations
   e. Mechanism for enforcement of the agreement
   f. Standardized language adopted as much as possible across the Diocese

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L. Development and Advancement
1. A development assessment should be conducted by each school if they have not done so in the
   last two years. The Office of Stewardship and Development should work with the Office of
   Catholic Schools to conduct development assessments.
2. As part of a school’s strategic plan, every school should have a development plan.
   Reasonable goals should be articulated.
3. Individual schools should have personnel able to assist the principal and pastor with
   development activities and trained in development/institutional advancement. This need can
   be met by hiring a full or part-time assistant to the principal or hiring a full or part-time
   development coordinator or development director for the school and possibly the parish.
   Volunteers can support development as long as those in charge are trained and properly
   directed.
4. Every school should have a committee specifically for school development and advancement.
5. Development committees, school administrators, pastors and school boards should be trained
   and knowledgeable with development. They should understand their respective roles and
   have an active part in development activities.
6. A strong theology of stewardship should be integral to the school development.
7. Development programs should have the following components in all schools. This is not a
   complete list.
   • School development committee
   • Process and plan to track alumni
   • Opportunities to bring groups into the school
   • Build relationships in the community with businesses and various community
      organizations
   • Annual report
   • Plan to build a school endowment
   • Training for administrators, development staff and board members
   • Use of website and internet for communications
   • Software designed to support development functions, integration of software with
      financial accounting and school administration, and a current database




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M. Diocesan Support for Catholic Schools
Observations
Diocesan support should be used strategically to strengthen and sustain Catholic education for the
long term. Propping up weak or failing schools is not a good long-term investment. Support
should be given when long-term viability can be achieved.
Diocesan support is presently provided in the following forms:
    •   $800,000 annual gift to Central City School Fund
    •   $678,000 annual gift to diocesan high schools
    •   $117,000 over five years in direct subsidy to elementary schools in crisis
    •   Expertise in the Office of Catholic Schools – four full-time professionals plus two support
        staff
    •   Expertise in the Office for Pastoral Planning as the office supports school planning
        initiatives
    •   Strategic planning for Catholic Schools
    •   Expertise in the Office of Stewardship and Development
    •   Expertise in the Office of Communications
    •   Endowment fund management

Recommendations
1. The best investment the Diocese can make is to provide leadership, support, and expertise
   through the professionals in the Office of Catholic Schools. A competent and well staffed
   Office of Catholic Schools has many benefits such as strengthening schools to be sustainable,
   providing accountability, coordinating programs for more effective mission, and supporting
   central city schools.
2. Implementation of the plan for Catholic schools will require an ongoing diocesan investment.
   Funding will be needed for:
   • In-service for school boards and formation of development boards
   • Training for principals and pastors
   • Marketing expertise for schools
   • Development expertise for schools
   • Implementation of a new funding model across the Diocese
   • Ongoing planning, market research, and studies of special situations
3. A capital campaign for Catholic schools should be considered for some time in the next three
   years. The case for the capital campaign could include the following possibilities:
   • Strengthen Catholic identity through spiritual formation for teachers and administrators.
   • Raise academic quality by funding new programs initiated through the Office of Catholic
       Schools. Make grants for technology. Make grants for programs that benefit multiple
       schools. Fund other needs identified in the plan.
   • Improve teaching by extending funding for professional development.



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    •   Expand marketing and recruitment. First enhance local school capabilities to market
        themselves and then support regional or diocesan marketing initiatives that complement
        local efforts.
    •   Through capital investment, help schools serving low income populations to be excellent
        and attractive, fully able to fulfill their mission. Provide supplemental funding for capital
        projects they could not afford to do on their own.
    •   Provide funding to support opening of new schools or relocation of schools. Specifically
        fund planning, underwrite enrollment and feasibility studies, assist with land acquisition,
        and fund start-up costs.
    •   Build a long-term endowment for Catholic education.
4. Diocesan support to high schools should be restricted to tuition assistance. High schools
   should provide accounting for use of funds as a condition of receiving funds the next year.
5. Continue to make an annual contribution to the Central City School Fund for the purpose of
   assisting designated schools. Direct operating subsidies from the Diocese should be avoided,
   other than support for designated schools in the Central City School Fund.
6. Revamp the Central City School Fund into the Children’s Education Fund. The main purpose
   of the fund will be the following. (further explanation will be given in the Funding Plan for
   Central City Schools)
    •   To extend the capability of local parishes and schools to provide needs-based tuition
        assistance to low-income families so that their children may attend a diocesan Catholic
        school/early childhood center in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph.
    •   To sustain quality Catholic education at Our Lady of the Angels, Our Lady of Guadalupe,
        Holy Cross and St. Stephen. To transition from direct subsidy of operating expenses
        (except for unusual needs or special projects) toward needs-based tuition assistance.
    •   To assist designated schools that meet financial criteria and planning requirements with
        funding for capital projects and special programming needs.

N. Teacher Compensation
1. All diocesan schools should follow the salary scales established by the Diocese. Every three
   years the plan for annual salary increases should be reviewed and approved by a task force
   with final approval given by the Bishop.
2. Salary targets should be 80% to 85% of starting public school salaries using an average of
   several districts and not depending on the State of Missouri as the only benchmark. A long-
   range goal should be to move from the current salary level which is 79% for a starting salary
   with a BA to 85%.
3. Teachers should receive tuition reductions for their children enrolled in Catholic elementary
   schools and high schools. The reduction should be part of the calculation of tuition aid.
4. Schools should make regular efforts throughout the year to recognize teachers and staff for
   their contribution to the mission of Catholic education and for their professional
   accomplishments.




Preliminary Strategic Plan – Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph                                     57
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