Boston archdiocese releases non-discrimination policy after school admittance controversy
Boston archdiocese releases non-discrimination policy after school admittance controversy

.- The Archdiocese of Boston has created a new Catholic schools admission policy in the wake of a controversy over a homosexual couple who tried to register their child for a Catholic school and were denied. The policy says schools must not “discriminate or exclude any categories of students,” while acknowledging the autonomy of local parish and school officials.

The new policy does not define what is considered to be a category of students, The Boston Pilot reports.

Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley pledged to create a new policy after a May 2010 incident in which a Catholic school in Hingham rescinded the acceptance of the child of a lesbian couple.

St. Paul Elementary school principal Cynthia Duggen and parish priest Fr. James Rafferty told one of the child’s parents that the boy could not attend because the couple’s relationship was “in discord with the teachings of the Catholic Church” which state that marriage can only takes place between one man and one woman.

Archdiocesan officials reacted negatively to the decision but there was no specific policy covering the situation.

The archdiocese’s Secretary for Education Mary Grassa O’Neill commented on the new policy.

"Our schools welcome, and they don't discriminate against any categories of students," she said. "It covers all categories of students."

Fr. Richard Erikson, vicar general and moderator of the curia, said Catholic education is “a treasure of the Church.”

“We want to share that as broadly as we can,” he added. “We will not exclude any category of child from our schools and we expect pastors will be in conformity with the decision.”

The policy says that its designers were guided by previous remarks of Pope Benedict XVI, canon law, and the U.S. bishops’ conference. A team of archdiocesan officials developed the policy. The team included the Presbyteral and Pastoral Councils and principals and pastors, including Fr. Rafferty.

Based on the principle of subsidiarity, which holds that decisions should be made at the lowest practical organizational level, the policy also maintains the rights of pastors, principals and other staff to develop admissions policies for their schools. Admission is dependent both on academic qualifications and the desire to promote “the best interest of the student,” the policy reads.

The archdiocese is encouraging schools to place their own admission policies in their handbooks and to provide prospective applicants with policy information before registering the child.

O’Neill said the new archdiocesan policy ensures Catholic schools are in line with federal non-discrimination standards. As legally sanctioned non-profit organizations, many of the archdiocese’s Catholic schools must sign a non-discrimination clause each year.

Fr. Erikson said the policy means parents enroll their child with the understanding that he or she will be taught the Catholic faith and will be required to participate in religious services that are part of the school’s curriculum.

Parents who enroll their children in Catholic schools should expect that their children “will be taught fully the Catholic faith,” he added.

Fr. Rafferty told the Pilot he welcomed “a clear policy to guide us in the important work of Catholic education.”

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic

Liturgical Calendar

April 23, 2014

Wednesday within the Octa ve of Easter

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 28:8-15


Daily Readings

First Reading:: Acts 3:1-10
Gospel:: Lk 24:13-35

Saint of the Day

St. Adalbert of Prague »


Homily of the Day

Mt 28:8-15


Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
Text only

Follow us: