John B. Kostoff

John B. Kostoff

John B. Kostoff is the Director of Education for the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board.

The strength of Catholic education is founded on an alliance between families, parishes and schools which work together towards a shared objective. Together they comprise the domestic church.

Pre-Vatican II babies remember it as if it were yesterday: Who made you? God made me? Why did God make you? To love Him in this world and to serve Him and be with Him in the next world.

You only have to look at the role technology plays in our lives, particularly in the lives of young people, to recognize that we are in an age of instant response and gratification. It is an age of limited analysis where consumerism runs rampant and opinion masquerades as fact.

It’s interesting how often the media picks up on bad news about religion — in particular, news about Catholic schools — and judiciously avoids some of the positive news from around the country.  

The release last month of the Ontario government’s revised physical education and health curriculum is an opportunity for Catholic schools to again demonstrate an approach that is both distinctive from but supportive of secular goals.  

The role of chaplaincy in Catholic education has a long history. When Catholic high schools were founded, by religious orders, it was often with great sacrifice that a community would identify a chaplain who had theological training, often a priest or professed religious. Those early communities understood the value of chaplaincy.

One benefit of having a large Catholic university like the University of Notre Dame is that it can allocate resources to support the Catholic community and Catholic education in a variety of ways. One such way is a program called ACE RISE, run by Fr. Ronald Nuzzi, PhD.

In his new book The Global War on Christians, John L. Allen Jr. follows in the path of Phillip Jenkins’ book, The New Anti-Catholicism, in highlighting growing anti-Catholicism in our society.

Recently I had the opportunity to meet with some parents who were looking at enrolling their children in a Catholic school. They made that decision because of their own experiences of Catholic education, but also because of their participation in a program run by a number of our school boards called “We’ve Been Waiting For You.” 

Part of the mandate of Catholic schools is to ensure that students develop an appreciation and understanding of the role of prayer. 

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