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Inside the New Wave of Old-School Education

Mar 27, 2024

Inside the New Wave of Old-School Education by Julia Steinberg at The Free Press. Amid growing claims that schools indoctrinate students, ‘classical education’—which teaches kids to think critically and master old books—is making a comeback…While this time-honored approach to education has fallen out of favor in recent decades—as many American schools have prioritized ideology and equal outcomes over excellence—it is now making a big comeback across the country. This is driven not only by parents’ growing realization of the old system’s academic failures but a sense that contemporary campus culture lacks much in the way of moral vision. Read


Screens Are Poisoning Kids' Minds by Erica Pandey at Axios. A shocking number of American kids are sad, suicidal and stuck on small screens sucking away their zest for life. Why it matters: This is the indisputable and alarming trend among American children, based on the latest polling and deep research by an NYU professor in a book out next week…The pandemic is often cited as a driver of the teen mental health crisis, but it was brewing long before then. A growing body of research links the acceleration of the crisis to one of this century’s biggest events: the arrival of the smartphone. Read


‘The Anxious Generation’ Review: Apps, Angst and Adolescence by Meghan Cox Gurdon at The Wall Street Journal. In 2012, the satirical Onion News Network ran a faux TV story about a smartphone-obsessed teenager capable only of rolling her eyes and texting. The reporter intoned: "Caitlin Teagart was a beautiful, lively girl who loved laughing and playing outside, but all that changed when she was 12." Now, hooked on technology, the girl is pallid and unresponsive. Caitlin's parents have decided to have her euthanized. "We can give her eyes," says the actor playing her father, "to someone who would actually use them to read a book." The timing of the video was excruciatingly apt. Smartphones had become ubiquitous, apps were proliferating and childhood itself was in the final throes of what the social psychologist Jonathan Haidt calls "the great rewiring." Read


Gov. Ron DeSantis Signs Bill Banning Kids Under 14 From Social Media by Kate Anderson at The Daily Signal. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, signed a bill Monday banning minors under the age of 14 from getting on social media. The legislation, which will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2025, requires social media companies to prohibit minors from creating accounts without parental consent and also delete existing accounts for children under the age of 14, according to the text. Florida Republican lawmakers introduced the bill in January and DeSantis said the purpose was to help parents protect their young children from the harms of social media, according to a press release. Read


Students with Down Syndrome Belong in Our Catholic Schools by J.D. Flynn at America Press Inc. While the Catholic Church has long been an outspoken voice for the rights and dignity of people with disabilities—encouraging parents of disabled children to choose life—those same children have often been excluded from Catholic schools. In most Catholic schools, parents like us have long been told that the cost of educating our children would be too great, or that public schools are better equipped for their formation…But that’s changed. A few years ago, our principal and pastor decided the benefits were worth the challenges. Read


2024 Michigan Catholic Schools Full Inclusion Conference at Catholic Foundation of Michigan. Discover the "Why and How" of launching a Full Inclusion Program at your Catholic School on April 19, 2024. The conference will begin promptly at 8:30am with breakfast, followed by dynamic morning and afternoon sessions and networking opportunities, designed to inspire and inform pastors, school heads, and principals. Read


Catholic Schools and an ‘Integrated Life of Faith’ by Michelle La Rosa at The Pillar. Eileen Reuter, who holds a PhD in philosophy and education, is interested in the qualities of Catholic schools which form their students to live integrated lives - a term which she describes as a fulfilling life with a Catholic understanding of what it means to be fully human…Reuter spoke with The Pillar about her research and its implications for Catholic schools striving to educate students in a secular culture. Read 


U.S. Catholic School Report Highlights Steady Enrollment, School Choice by Kate Quiñones at Catholic News Agency. Following three years of modest growth, enrollment in Catholic education has remained stable since 2023, according to new data made public Wednesday by the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA).  The NCEA, which gathers statistics on Catholic school enrollment in the United States each year, reported that enrollment remained steady with a 0.0% change in enrollment from 2022-2023 to 2023-2024. Following two straight years of notable growth, Catholic school enrollment had again risen slightly nationwide in 2022-2023. Read


175+ Traditionalist Books for Your Kids You’ve Never Heard Of by Cadence McManimon at Intellectual Takeout. Your kids are (finally!) reading on their own . . . Now what? Well, now is when we parents face the often-herculean task of trying to verify which books are safe and fit for our kids to read—not to mention supportive of traditional values!...Most of these are hidden gems few readers will come across in conventional bookstores or literary circles. Read


Mary's Question by Father Paul Scalia at Catholic Education Resource Center. The Blessed Virgin Mary—the epitome of humility, faith, and obedience—does something that we do not typically associate with those virtues. She asks a question: "How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?" Of course, the whole point is that she asks the question in all humility, faith, and obedience. In so doing, she teaches us how to question and, thus, how to think properly about our faith. Read


Dr. George Harne Named Next President of Christendom College by Christendom College. A widely respected and accomplished scholar of music history and the liberal arts, Harne earned his Ph.D. from Princeton University and received master’s degrees from Princeton, St. John’s College, and the University of Washington. Harne, who previously served as the Executive Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences for the University of St. Thomas in Houston and as President of Magdalen College of the Liberal Arts, brings with him extensive experience in both the administrative and academic dimensions of higher education, making him ideally suited to serve as Christendom’s fourth president. Read


Catholic Medical School at Benedictine College Seeks Accreditation, Eyes 2027 Opening by Jonah McKeown at Catholic News Agency. A new Catholic, osteopathic medical school that will be housed on the campus of Benedictine College hopes to open in the fall of 2027, the project’s founding president told CNA this week…The planned school, first announced last September and dubbed the St. Padre Pio Institute for the Relief of Suffering, will adhere to Ex Corde Ecclesiae, St. John Paul II’s 1990 apostolic constitution on the mission of Catholic colleges and universities. Read


Throwback Thursday


Kids Glued to Screens? Teach Them the Art of Conversation by Thomas Lickona at Catholic Education Resource Center on July 17, 2018. Don't give up if your kids resist back-and-forth questions at first…Being able to make conversation is a skill that can make any relationship better.  People who study communication say the secret of being a good conversationalist is being interested in the other person.  Some people just talk about themselves…The way to show sincere interest in somebody else is to ask good questions that draw them out. Here are 20 questions we've found interesting and fun in our family. Read

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