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Boston College to be honored for aiding local Catholic schools

Posted by Matt Rocheleau  March 26, 2013 02:25 PM

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Boston College will be honored this week for its work to partner with local Catholic schools.

The Catholic Schools Foundation will honor BC at the foundation’s 23rd annual Inner-City Scholarship Fund gala on Wednesday, March 27, university officials said.

Michael R. Reardon, the foundation’s executive director, praised university president William P. Leahy, SJ, for his and vision to shape BC initiatives that support Catholic schools.

“Under Fr. Leahy’s leadership, BC has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to our Catholic schools,” Reardon said in a statement. “Catholic education in Boston has been enriched by the genuine commitment of BC to develop deep and sustaining partnerships that can transform Catholic schools by bringing together essential resources and inspiring others to support this vital work.”

Led by the university’s Lynch School of Education, Boston College partners with schools by providing services for students, program grants, strategic planning, leadership and professional development and graduate school courses for educators, officials said.

The university said the cornerstone of its work with area Catholic schools is its collaboration with the St. Columbkille Partnership School in Brighton. BC helped save the school from the brink of closure and its efforts have helped the school to boost enrollment, enhance curriculum, restore facilities, improve finances and management, and allowed teachers at the school to earn their masters degrees at BC at no cost.

BC’s work to partner with local Catholic schools also includes: the Barbara and Patrick Roche Center for Catholic Education, Boston Catholic Connects, the Lynch Leadership Academy, the Urban Catholic Teacher Corps; Brighton’s new, co-educational Saint Joseph Preparatory High School; the St. Columbkille Summer Camp; and the Summer Technology Academy, according to the university.

“Strengthening and advancing Catholic education in Boston is truly a team effort involving teachers and principals, students and families, generous supporters and the University,” said a statement from the school’s interim Dean Maureen Kenny.

The annual event on Wednesday helps support financial aid to as many as 5,000 students across grades K-12 in area Catholic schools, BC said. The foundation estimates it will award $6.5 million in scholarships, $1 million more in program grants to schools and another $500,000 in donor-specified initiatives.

The gala will be chaired this year by Suffolk Construction CEO John Fish, officials said.
Carlos Tamayo, an eighth-grade student at St. Columbkille Partnership School, will speak at the event. With the help of the Hispanic Recruitment Initiative, Carlos enrolled in St. Columbkille. Next year, he plans to attend Boston College High School.

Tamayo will be introduced by Jonathan Pierre, who also attended St. Columbkille’s and BC High with scholarship aid from the foundation, officials said. He is now a sophomore studying economics at BC, where he is also a student manager for the men’s basketball team.

“I would like the people who support Catholic schools to know that their investment does make a difference,” said a statement from Pierre, who grew up in Brighton and Cambridge. “Believe in the mission and believe in the work of the Catholic Schools Foundation. It does work and I’m just one of the many examples.”

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