To the editor:
More than 4,600 young people and their families in The Southsider Voice’s circulation area celebrated Catholic Schools Week Jan. 31 through Feb. 6.
We celebrated the commitment of so many thousands of Southsiders who make this possible – students, parents, parishioners, priests, teachers, administrators and those who are committed to a bright future for our neighborhoods.
Like their 19,000-plus peers in the other 59 Catholic schools in the archdiocese throughout central and southern Indiana, these young Southsiders come from all walks of life.
And yet, though diverse, they have much in common:
• They are heirs of a legacy of excellence in a faith-based education.
• They are stewards of a common, shared mission of building the kingdom of God in their hearts, homes and communities.
• They are creators of an untold future, which is as bright as innocent hope can dream.
Academic research demonstrates that Catholic schools are anchor institutions. As communities of faith, they are centers of formation that develop graduates who are more likely to vote and be civically engaged, practicing members of faith communities. Graduates are also likely to have higher earning potentials while being less prone to engage in criminal behavior.
Your Southside Catholic school communities are full of faith, hope and love. They are communities of promise, invitation and belief. They are more than educational institutions – they are formational and transformational ministries that are integral to the life of the church and the mission of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis.
In the Gospels, Christ says, “Let the little children come to me ... for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”
With open doors, arms and hearts, let us ever more deeply embrace this great mission that we share.
The Most Rev. Joseph W. Tobin
Archbishop of Indianapolis
Unnecessary testing, unnecessary spending
To the editor:
As chief information officer at Roncalli High School, part of my responsibility is the success of government-required online testing.
This yearly ritual requires a tremendous amount of physical, intellectual and emotional resources. It disrupts our instruction time for our students as they are required to “stress test.” Each year the test fails, and resources are then needed to retest the test. Students will then take additional and valuable class instruction time to take the actual tests.
The increased number of tests – WIDA, end-of-course assessment, ISTEP and our Accuplacer – will tie up our computer resources for nearly four weeks. During this time, teachers in subject areas not being tested will not have access to these computer resources, thus changing what they are teaching and how they teach it.
Hours upon hours are spent by administrators, teachers, department chairs and technology staff to coordinate, schedule, test and track all of the logistics required to complete online testing. In addition, money is spent to upgrade computers, computer infrastructure and Internet connections so that testing go smoothly.
Our school is considering purchasing a computer for every student, and one of the biggest reasons is online testing.
I have raised three children, all in college now. We have standardized tests that are recognized by every college in the country: PSAT, SAT and ACT. These tests take no classroom instruction time and do not tie up any computer resources at our school.
Bottom line: When we are testing we are not teaching. When we are spending money on additional computer resources, we are not spending money on teachers.
A first-class event
To the editor:
I would like to give a special thank you to Southport High School athletic director Peter Hubert and his army of Cardinals for the wonderful event that they hosted Jan. 29 to honor the school’s former Indiana All-Star basketball players.
The Southport Alumni Association and everyone who helped coordinate this magical night deserve a medal. If you attended, you witnessed the history of what Southport was ... and still is – a pillar of the community.
Mr. Hubert will be hard- pressed to hold another event that equals this, but seeing what he has done so far, it would not surprise me.
Thank you for bringing back so many fond memories of days gone by and once again resurrecting the community spirit.
I look forward the next event when Southport brings home a state title.