Archdiocese of Hartford
Office of Education, Evangelization and Catechesis
April 1, 2020
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Message from Human Resources

On Behalf of Karen Kean, Director of Human Resources:

As we navigate through these unprecedented times, I hope that everyone is safe and doing well. We have some good news to share with everyone.
 
Health and Dental Insurance Contributions:
Effective with the paycheck dated April 1, 2020, employees who are enrolled in the medical and/or dental plans will see a reduction in their payroll deductions for those plans.Your payroll deduction for the medical plan will decrease approximately 50%, dependent upon which medical plan you have selected.Your payroll deduction for the dental plan will decrease by 50%. These reductions will continue until June 30, 2020. 
 
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Health Insurance:
Effective immediately, employees and their enrolled dependents will have the ability to get the care needed for COVID-19 testing and medical care.Our medical plan will waive the members’ cost share, including copays, coinsurance and deductibles, for diagnostic testing related to COVID-19. Also waived are the charges for the in-network visit associated with COVID-19 testing, whether it takes place at a doctor’s office, urgent care center or emergency department. If an in-network provider isn’t available, Anthem will work with insured employee and dependents to make sure that they are covered for the care needed. Within the next week you will be receive additional information directly from Anthem to further explain this enhanced coverage. I will continue to send you updates and information on a regular basis. Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions that you may have.
 
Karen

Important Sacramental Preparation Information

The Archdiocese has issued guidance for the celebration of initiation of adults (RCIA/Adult Confirmation) in light of the circumstances of this Triduum. The Archbishop has distributed this guidance to all pastors, and we ask that anyone involved with the initiation of adults read this guidance thoroughly. It is available in English and en Espanol

Please note that guidance was issued last week by Sr. Mary Grace and the OEEC in terms of faith formation and sacramental preparation in the current climate. This is recommended reading for anyone responsible for the sacramental preparation of children or adults: all parish catechetical leaders and catechists, Catholic school teachers doing sacramental preparation, RCIA team members, and more. Click here to access the guidance from March 20, 2020.

 

On Behalf of Sister Mary Grace:

Tuition Payments Continue:

The OEEC has heard from some parents regarding whether tuition payments are required for "providing packets".  Our general response is:

Our obligation is to teach during this unprecedented crisis.  Schools must be very creative in order to accomplish their goal to prepare students for progress to the next grade.  As this is our obligation, the payment of tuition is necessary.

Whatever manner the education may be presented, online, home packets, email, Zoom sessions, the teachers are working tirelessly to create daily lessons to engage students in multiple subject areas, while keeping their emotional state in the forefront of the day-to-day delivery. In addition, they try very hard to take into consideration the parents’ responsibilities for their own work and that of other children in the family.  Administrators will contact teachers regularly and contact parents as often as is possible.

The only way to stop tuition payments is to disenroll a student from a Catholic school. The student must then be enrolled in a public school.  OEEC provides resources and direction for administrators to share with the faculty through weekly webinars with our office.  Sound instruction for progression to the next grade must be provided for our students.

Ministerial Agreements

Due to the evolving situation with the pandemic, it is understandable that some elementary school administrators are concerned about enrollment and staffing for the 2020-2021 academic year. At this time, please do not offer any Ministerial Agreements to faculty.  According to the policy book we have until May 1, 2020 do so.  You will receive more guidance on this the week of April 20, 2020 when we have more data and can make realistic assumptions about enrollment numbers for next year. If there is a need to extend past the May 1, 2020 date, the OEEC will determine the best way to do this.

Thank you for your cooperation in this important matter.

Welcome Back Maria!

The OEEC is happy to welcome Maria Maynard back from medical leave. She is pleased to be of assistance to you; feel free to contact her.


On Behalf of the Faith Formation Directors of the Office of Education, Evangelization and Catechesis:

MAKING DISCIPLES 101: REGISTRATION STILL OPEN! Click here to register for this awesome opportunity!

On Behalf of Anne T. Clubb, Director of Community Engagement: 

School administrators are encouraged to review the recorded versions of the Partners in Mission webinars that have already aired. They offer excellent guidance from Catholic school presidents and principals, sharing how they are handling difficult issues like re-imagined galas, donor outreach, admissions/financial aid deadlines, and distance learning. To feel a connectedness with your colleagues across the country is so helpful, and to obtain best practice recommendations from those experiencing the same challenges is priceless, so just click on the sessions posted to “hear” from your counterparts in schools across the nation!


On Behalf of Kelly Henderschedt, Archdiocesan Director of Catechesis:

Dear Catechetical Leaders,

I want to thank you all for the hard work you have been doing to keep families connected to faith formation during this time of separation. It is certainly challenging to learn new digital platforms and an alternate way of  ‘gathering’-but this outreach to families during such a difficult time will bear much fruit. Thank you for your efforts! I have been having difficulties with outgoing emails, so if you would like to reach me, please send me an email with your phone number and a good time to call. I am happy to speak with you on a phone call or video conference call. 

May the Holy Spirit continue to sustain us as we seek to help families encounter Jesus Christ.


On Behalf of Maria Maynard, Assistant to the Provost:

Dear Principals,

Once again you are to be congratulated on your consistent effort to remain connected with your faculty. You are  providing  support and resources to assist their work with students and parents to successfully achieve ongoing Catholic education in our faith, academically, socially, and emotionally, during these challenging times.

Here are some additional thoughts for you to consider;

  1. Work on summative evaluations of faculty due at the close of the school year.
  2. Continue to visit classrooms virtually using zoom or whatever platform you have. Joining classrooms keeps you informed and connected.
  3. Communicate with faculty daily if possible, and parents a few times a week.

Recalling the story where  Jesus was  asleep  in the boat  and  the disciples  feared  the storm, be assured that you are never alone. Remember that even when you feel  alone, each of us was called especially to do this great work of Catholic school leadership. Jesus is with you always.


On Behalf of Laura McCaffrey, Assistant to the Provost:

HOPES Grant Deadline has been extended to Friday, April 24, 2020.

The HOPES Grant application and memo regarding the application are located on the OEEC portal. The grant application, along with required attachments, is due on or before April 24, 2020. The application can be sent by email to Laura@McCaffrey@aohct.org.

If you have any questions regarding the application process please contact me at Laura.McCaffrey@aohct.org 

Distance Learning OEEC Page on the OEEC Website for Principals and Teachers:

Elementary school principals and teachers please review the OEEC website for resources on Distance Learning here. Also if you want to share distance learning resources with other teachers, please email Laura.McCaffrey@aohct.org.

Distance Learning Reminders:

  • When posting on social media do not include pictures of students working in their homes: only use screen shots of teachers please.
  • Recording should not include student images or student names.
  • Refrain from capturing any video of students before the class or during follow-up discussions.
  • Recommend to teachers to video record lessons alone, without students in the session, and then distribute the video to students afterwards.
  • Video software is equipped with an option to turn off the recording feature.

On Behalf of Jennifer McClintock, Coordinator of Catholic Scouting:

Please see this announcement from the National Catholic Committee on Scouting (NCCS) in response to concerns about how our Scouts can complete their Catholic Religious Emblems during the current national health emergency. If you are working on your emblems, please let me know by email: Jennifer.McClintock@aohct.org. Be sure to review our webpage for updates. For the latest copy of The Bridge, the NCCS newsletter, click here

On Behalf of Lisa Orchen, Archdiocesan Director of Catechetical Initiatives and
Kelly Henderschedt, Archdiocesan Director of Catechesis:

This week we developed a page on our website with outstanding resources to offer our parish and school families for celebrating Holy Week at home.  


On Behalf of Nicole Perone, Archdiocesan Director of Adult Faith Formation:

In this time of social distancing, it can be difficult for adults to continue to engage with their faith. Thankfully, there is an abundance of digital resources to help all adults continue to grow in their faith - whether in ministry in a parish or school, a parent, or simply a member of the faithful. 

First, please visit the coronavirus resource page of our website, which includes a robust section of “Resources for Everyone” ranging from prayer practices to digital retreats to podcasts and much, much more! 

Second, adult faith formation ministers would benefit from reviewing the latest issue of GEMS (Great Endeavors Mined and Shared)  which is an equally extensive library of resources for adults. 

The TeamRCIA event scheduled for May 29, 2020- May 30, 2020 has been postponed at this time.

More information about rescheduling for Spring 2021 is forthcoming.


On Behalf of Michael Wellington, Archdiocesan Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry:

Youth in Hart 

Dear Friends,

During the month of April we will be meeting every Thursday at noon via Go To Meeting as a chance to pray together, share ideas for distance Youth Ministry and talk about the road ahead. This is a unique time in our ministry and I thank you for your dedication to the young people of the archdiocese. I look forward to seeing you on Thursday and know that you and your ministry are in my prayers!

Youth in Hart: Weekly Gathering
Thursdays starting April 2, 2020 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
https://global.gotomeeting.com/join/764787709


Please feel free to share this newsletter with your constitutes. All past newsletters can be found on our website catholicEdaohct.org.

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