Campaign for Catholic Schools

Ten years ago, led by Cardinal Seán O’Malley, Boston recognized that the tipping point had been reached in its Catholic schools, particularly in its inner-city elementary schools. With enrollment rapidly declining and schools closing, a major review and strategic planning effort evolved to change the trajectory of Catholic education in Boston. Chaired by Boston business and civic leader Jack Connors, Jr., at the behest of Boston’s Archbishop Cardinal Seán O’Malley, this endeavor came to be known first as the 2010 Initiative for Catholic Education and, in time, as the Campaign for Catholic Schools.

The Campaign for Catholic Schools (CCS) is a change agent for rebuilding Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Boston through new models that introduce lay governance, strong academics, facility improvement, new technology, and innovative teacher support. Trinity Catholic Academy in Brockton, CCS' first successful pilot school, was established in 2007. Thanks to the generosity of philanthropists who gave over $10 million in private support, and to Boston’s Suffolk Construction, which undertook major renovations at below cost, three Catholic elementary schools with declining enrollment became one regional two-campus Academy educating 350 mostly low-income students.

Established in 2008, Saint John Paul II Catholic Academy (SJPIICA) was established by the coming together of seven parish schools to form a three-campus Academy. With an enrollment of 1,150 children, age 2.9- Grade 8, SJPIICA is governed by a lay board of trustees and is administered by a regional director.

CCS has also influenced the establishment of three additional academies—Lawrence Catholic Academy, Quincy Catholic Academy, and South Boston Catholic Academy—and has consulted with other struggling Catholic school systems throughout the United States.

Visit the Campaign for Catholic Schools' website to learn more.

Catholic Schools Foundation

The Catholic Schools Foundation (CSF) is the premier non-profit institution for granting aid to low-income students to attend Catholic elementary and high school in the Archdiocese of Boston. CSF’s tax exempt 501(c)(3) status is separate from the diocese, allowing companies and individuals who are unable to donate to religious organizations to support disadvantaged youth in the Archdiocese. Over the past three decades, CSF has distributed more than $100 million in scholarship aid to over 50,000 students in the Greater Boston community. With their recipients achieving an astounding 100% high school graduation rate, our scholarships are changing lives. We have earned the highest possible rating (4-stars) through Charity Navigator based on our financial health, accountability and transparency.

Visit the Catholic Schools Foundation's website to learn more.

The Lynch Foundation

Carolyn and Peter Lynch established The Lynch Foundation in order to spread the values that were instilled in them throughout their childhood. Both children of educators, they went to public schools and attended college on a scholarship. As they went on to have successful careers, they remembered the importance of education and the generosity of those who had provided them with an opportunity to receive one. As a result, they founded The Lynch Foundation in 1988.

Because The Lynch Foundation views giving as an investment, it places its resources in a diverse portfolio of sustainable organizations, from innovative and promising start-ups to well-established organizations with strong leadership. This diversity allows The Lynch Foundation to serve the largest constituency and help its partners act as a catalyst for effective change.

The Lynch Foundation primarily supports four areas of giving: education, cultural and historic preservation, health care and wellness, and the religious and educational efforts of the Roman Catholic Church. The Lynch Foundation’s relationship with its grantees is a partnership, with the foundation providing the resources and support needed to help its grantees succeed in the Greater Boston community.

Visit The Lynch Foundation's website to learn more.

FACTS

FACTS, a Nelnet company (NYSE: NNI), is located in Lincoln, Neb., and is committed to making educational dreams possible through service and technology. FACTS serves more than three million students and families at over 11,500 schools, and manages $9 billion in tuition funds annually. FACTS offers a comprehensive suite of services including tuition management, a student information system, payment administration and processing, financial needs assessment, and online admissions/enrollment solutions.

In 2014, Nelnet purchased RenWeb and its suite of student administration solutions. After the acquisition, they worked hard to integrate RenWeb & FACTS team members and products into a single entity to better serve our customers, and in 2018 they rebranded to do business as FACTS.

Visit FACTS' website to learn more.

Healey Education Foundation

The Healey Education Foundation grew from faith and business savvy. Robert T. Healey Sr. established the Foundation in 2004 to bring sound business principles to the challenges of revitalizing Catholic Schools. Since then, it has grown to serve 79 elementary and high schools across six dioceses in Delaware, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

The Healey Education Foundation partners with dioceses and fellow philanthropists who believe in the value of Catholic schools. As an operational nonprofit, Healey provides resourceful strategies, training and coaching to dioceses and individual schools. Healey partner schools are active participants, every step of the way, in taking charge of their own futures.

Visit the Healey Education Foundation's website to learn more.

Museum of Science: Engineering is Elementary

Anyone who has ever watched children at play know; they are fascinated with building things—and with taking things apart to see how they work. In other words, children are natural-born engineers. When children engineer in a school setting, research suggests several positive results:

Building Science and Math Skills

Engineering calls for children to apply what they know about science and math—and their learning is enhanced as a result. At the same time, because engineering activities are based on real-world technologies and problems, they help children see how disciplines like math and science are relevant to their lives.

Classroom Equity

Research suggests that engineering activities help build classroom equity. The engineering design process removes the stigma from failure; instead, failure is an important part of the problem-solving process and a positive way to learn. It is equally important that there’s no single “right” answer in engineering; one problem can have many solutions. When classroom instruction includes engineering, all students can see themselves as successful.

21st Century Skills

Hands-on, project-based learning is the essence of engineering. As groups of students work together to answer questions like, “How large should I make the canopy of this parachute?” or, “What material should I use for the blades of my windmill?” they collaborate, think critically and creatively, and communicate with one another.

Career Success

Classroom engineering activities often require students to work in teams, where they must collaborate and communicate effectively. In the 21st century, these skills will be critical for career success in any field.

Research also shows that when engineering is part of elementary instruction, students become more aware of the diverse opportunities for engineering, science, and technical careers—and they are more likely to see these careers as options they could choose.

This finding is important at a time when the number of U.S. college students pursuing engineering education is decreasing. Early introduction to engineering can encourage many capable students—but especially girls and minorities—to consider engineering as a career and take the necessary science and math courses in high school.

Engaged Citizens

Finally, consider some of our nation’s most pressing policy issues—energy, healthcare, the environment. Engineering and technological literacy will be critical for all U.S. citizens to make informed decisions in the 21st century.

Visit the Museum of Science's Engineering is Elementary website to learn more.

Math Shelf

Math Shelf is a Silicon Valley company whose mission is to create evidence-based iPad mathematics software for young children. Math Shelf is the first proven iPad app (through a randomized controlled trial) that significantly increases young children's mathematics achievement. In just three months, preschoolers who played Math Shelf learned one-year more than similar students participating in classroom math instruction.

Math Shelf aims to replace paper worksheets with fun games, puzzles and virtual manipulatives inspired by Maria Montessori, developmental theory, and evidence-based early number interventions. Research demonstrates that children participate in significantly more math practice and receive significantly more effective feedback when playing Math Shelf compared to the mathematics activities they complete in class.

Math Shelf is a mobile early childhood mathematics curriculum that provides practice anytime and anywhere on iPads. The curriculum is aligned with the Common Core Standards and presents over 250 sequenced instructional activities. Children can log on and play Math Shelf at school, at home, or on the go.

Visit Math Shelf's website to learn more.