Author Topic: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools  (Read 864 times)

Offline TLM424

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Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« on: October 28, 2018, 04:19:21 PM »
My son is only in preschool right now and won't be in kindergarten until Sept 2020 but we're trying to decide what to do regarding his education. He is currently in a developmental preschool (for special ed, speech, OT) and one of his biggest problems is being social with the other kids. He will likely have an IEP when going into kindergarten. If he is still struggling with socializing when leaving preschool I'm not sure if homeschooling would be the best solution for us, since he needs the socialization. I know you can socialize with other home schooled kids but we don't live in a big homeschooling area and I'm worried that the isolation will hurt his already difficult situation.

We definitely do not want to send our son to public school. Does anyone here send their kids to a Novus Ordo Catholic School? I know there will be difficulties with this but I was thinking that we could purchase a traditional Catholic home school subject (just on Catholicism, not the other subjects) to make sure he is learning traditional Catholicism through us while also attending the NO school. I'm also wondering about things such as evolution and the big bang theory. I'm assuming this would be taught in a NO school and I'm wondering if we could somehow opt out of that since it is against our beliefs. Finally, the NO schools near us have the students attend mass as a school on the first Friday of the month. Do NO schools typically REQUIRE mass attendance of students? One of the schools has the mass at the very end of the day and then the kids are dismissed right after mass so I'm thinking maybe I could pick him up before mass every month. Either that or I will have to tell him not to receive Holy Communion.

I know many of these questions will be specific to the individual school's policy; however, I'm just wondering if anyone else has any personal experience with sending their children to a NO school and addressing some of these issues. Thank you!
 

Offline Chestertonian

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2018, 05:03:10 PM »
my advice would be focus on the present, enjoy your child, be a good example of traditional Catholic manhood because the most influential lesson he will receive is your example regardless of where he goes to school.  Don't worry too much about tomorrow's problems today because they might work themselves out on their own.

My wife works full time and I'm disabled.  He was going to an early childhood program at a novus ordo school and I wasn't happy with it because (a) it wasn't any more Catholic than the public schools) (b) it wasn't developmentally appropriate--I would have preferred a Montessori curriculum and (c) they weren't effectively managing house type 1 diabetes and he wasn't getting enough physical activity.

So my wife and I had read a lot of homeschool books and took a big gulp of homeschool koolaid and convinced ourselves that homeschooling was a good idea.  We did it instead of preschool for one year and we did it for his kindergarten year.

I am grateful for all the time I had with him.  However, I became less and less able to be hands on with the learning activities, I could no longer sing with him or teach him piano.  The homeschool co-ops were full of people who homeschool their transgender kid because the public schools aren't liberal enough.  He was lonely and isolated and would walk past the local school and cry because he wished he could go.  Finally he got into a magnet school for gifted children and it's much more than we could offer at home academically considering our situation.  He has always been a very independent child and he does stuff like keep holy water in his desk and wears a green scapular and st Benedict medal for protection.  I really think his Guardian Angel has his back--for 1st/2nd grade he was blessed with a teacher who was a practicing Catholic and this year his teacher always talks about how endeared she is when he says his Angelus prayers at noon on the dot.
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Offline The Curt Jester

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2018, 03:51:35 PM »
I work for an NO Catholic school. I can tell you a few things from an insider perspective:

1. They teach evolution (theistic, but still). They are all aware that I highly disapprove since I mentioned it at a faculty meeting. But I'm just the "strange" guy on staff.

2. Mass attendance is required. As far as the NO goes, it's pretty decent, but it's still the NO.

3. The kids in a Catholic school can be a really bad influence. I see some bad behavior among the students on a regular basis. I will not be sending my kids where I work because of several things, but one is that I do not want my kids socializing with the "Catholic" kids.

4. We have turned away (or redirected) students who require special education because we lack the resources to handle them. We do have some SPED children, but they are relatively few. What we can get help with is speech and reading, but if there are major behavior issues or bigger mental/learning issues, we either won't accept them (if we know about the issue beforehand) or ship them away after a quarter if they are too problematic.  I do not know what the resources are in your nearby Catholic schools, but it quite likely would be a similar situation.
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Offline Davis Blank - EG

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2018, 04:43:55 PM »
I've yet to hear a person say something positive about a Catholic school (from the Catholic perspective).  They seem to be atheist and pagan factories.  That they employ atheists like Kirin should be an indicator of what we can expect from such places.  Monkey see monkey do, its going to be hard to keep the faith when surrounded by a bunch of "Catholic" kids whom are hardly Catholic.

Socialization goes both ways.  Your son can make friends (that's good) and his friends can sink him into the world of materialism, obsession with cultural nonsense, and when he reaches his teenage years, they can introduce him to all the depraved things of the world (that's all bad).  To me, the factory-style education system is very unnatural - the child is exclusively around children his same age, day in day out, until graduation.  Meanwhile the real world is nothing like that.  Children are hardly a good influence on each other anyways - his time would be better spent having 1-2 play friends and chatting with good adults.

If homeschooling is possible, I'd do that.  If it is not, I'd do as Chestertonian suggested and look at a non-Catholic specialty school.  Are there any Christian classical education schools in town?

Edit:  when a priest asked me where I will send my kids for school, I said homeschool, and he said good, do not send them to a Catholic school.  For what its worth, the good priests warn against it
« Last Edit: October 29, 2018, 04:46:40 PM by Davis Blank - EG »
 

Offline Prayerful

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2018, 07:07:51 PM »
Honestly wonder if non-Catholic schools might be better. The parent hopefully can opt child out of school RE, and see to it himself. Not sure.
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Offline TLM424

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2018, 10:30:03 AM »
Thank you for your replies!

Chestertonian - Thank you! I agree with you. We can't stress over it and we need to trust that God will lead us to the best decision for our children.

The Curt Jester - Thank you for your insider perspective of a NO school! My spouse and I both graduated from NO elementary and high schools as kids and thinking back to the experience they weren't terrible, but I'm sure things have further declined over the years... The NO school we're considering does have special ed services and my son does not have behavioral issues, so he may just need some additional assistance with extra test time and other things that they could hopefully provide. We need to actually see the school and see just how liberal/conservative it really is. I wish it wasn't so impossible to find a true Catholic education. It's very sad.

Davis Blank - We are Eastern Catholics (Ukrainian) but we were both NO Catholics growing up. Our Eastern Catholic parish priest also advises against going to the NO schools and to home school instead, if possible. We actually do have a Christian classical education school nearby and it goes from K-12, which is perfect. Do you really think that this would be better than a NO school? I know classical education is superior to the typical education children receive; however, I would be worried about Protestant ideas being implanted into my son (however, I have similar concerns with NO schools). I'm definitely interested in learning more about this school near me, but I'm just hesitant because of the Protestant ideas my son will be exposed to.

Can we please rewind the clock so I can send my son to a real Catholic school where he will have the real Latin mass and Catholic teaching?? :(
 

Offline Traditionallyruralmom

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2018, 02:48:55 PM »
How do you know you don't live in a big homeschool area?  You may be surprised. 
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Offline Chestertonian

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2018, 02:56:36 PM »

i think what used to happen, is that Catholics would send their children to Catholic schools or Catholic universities, and then get a false sense of security.  Same with public schools.  People trusted institutions a lot more, even in the 1980's when I was a kid.  Now, we're seeing a lot of homeschooling because I think even secular parents are realizing that parents are their child's first teachers and school is not a substitute for the work a parent must do in teaching their children.  I think when you have a child in the public schools, especially today, it does make you more vigilant, because you have to be.  you know that the friends your child makes might not necessarily be a good influence so you have to raise your child to be more of an influencer than a follower.

Catholic school gave a lot of parents a false sense of security.  You figured, you sent your children to the parochial school, so you've done your part to be good parents.  The school did all the sacramental preparation and catechism.  I think parents, especially fathers, forgot how to establish a family culture in the home.  It's very, very hard to establish a family culture when the wife is working, dad is at work, and the child is at school all day because you just don't have as much time together.  if you don't make a conscious effort to cultivate a family culture, it won't happen.  It can also be harder to give your children a picture of what Catholicism really is if they aren't experiencing authentic catholicism at home, but the school gives them a different picture. 

that being said, homeschooling can also give you a false sense of security.  When you have so much control over who your child socializes with and what they read and consume, you can sometimes get the sense that your child is set for eternity--but at the same time, there are bad influences in homeschool groups (even Catholic ones) and it's no guarantee that your child will not rebel later on and lose their faith.  if the child gets the sense that they are being raised in a bubble, it might just create more of an incentive to be curious about life outside the bubble.  Usually it's easier to build a family culture, but there is such a thing as too much togetherness and it can sometimes be hard balancing the role of both parent and teacher. 

i think a lot of it comes down to always being vigilant and always trying to be their "first teachers" regardless of what arrangement ends up working out for your family.  for example, I know that my son is exposed to children who have 2 moms and 2 dads (although he knew about that even when we were homeschooling because there were a lot of same sex couples who homeschool).  so i have to make sure that he is equipped with the truth--that all of us need a mom and a dad in order to be born, and that in every couple with 2 dads, there is a mommy out there somewhere who gave birth to that baby but isn't raising that baby, and how much of a loss that must be for the child.  it's easy for a child to see how that is a tragedy, not something to celebrate, when you give them all of the facts about same sex parenting (for example)


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Offline Davis Blank - EG

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2018, 10:08:41 PM »
Chestertonian is correct regarding false sense of security.  We can greatly improve the odds but cannot guarantee anything.  Some actions taken and choices made will have more impact than others.  I think type of education and whom the children are around all day is very important, but family atmosphere probably most important.  And specifically within the family I think its up to the dad, his influence far outstrip's that of the mother - if he lives the Catholic life chances are high the children will as well.  If he doesn't then maybe strive to find a Catholic male role model whom the kids can spend time with.

Back to education, here is the order I'd give to educational options:

1) Homeschool
2) Christian classical school (almost assuredly is Protestant)
3) Magnet school
4) Good public school
5) Catholic school
6) Public school

Although I might swap Catholic school into last place, its  close tie.  Reason being is that I think Catholic schools give a destructive false impression of what the Catholic faith is.  That is why they end up as atheist and pagan factories.  I'd much rather my child go to a solid classical Protestant school or even a public school than a Catholic one.  In both of those environments I can better separate to my children the difference between their beliefs and ours.  Not such an easy task in a Catholic school where supposedly everyone is Catholic.  And once the kid becomes a teen and realizes that the bishop hires Teacher Kirin, the atheist, and accepts enrollment from non-Catholics for the money, they'll realize the schools are a scam and incorrectly associate the religion with it, deeming it a scam too.

In a Protestant school I can focus on home apologetics so the children can see why their Christian friends, while good, are wrong.  Its more a matter of not letting them get steamrolled by gotcha questions.  In a public school I can show the kid how disastrous life will be for them as a heathen.

Both the public and Catholic schools teach the same stuff anyways.  Catholic schools are 100% modern education with a dash of religion added in, taught by the heretic sister or atheist Kirin.  Who wants that?

The more I think about it, I am fairly certain a Catholic school is the last place I'd go.  Maybe there are a few great exceptions, maybe a few excellent ones exist, and yes there are kids whom survive them and become pious adults, but overall it looks like a bad choice.

Regarding rewinding time, I would not be so wistful for the recent past.  VII and the collapse in the faith did not spring out of no where.  Those bishops were born decades ago and so their formation must have been quite awful long before VII.  I suspect that Catholic things in the early 20th century from the surface looked good, but that rot was well setting in, leading to what happened in the 60s.

My recommendation, don't worry about socialization.  Homeschool, if you can't, classical education school and homeschool catechesis with a huge dose of apologetics, if not that then public school, with a huge dose of teaching that the kids around are barbarous, God calls your kids to something higher.

And again I state that strong faith primarily comes from the father.  If he's living it, the kids as adults probably will.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2018, 10:11:49 PM by Davis Blank - EG »
 
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Offline diaduit

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2018, 05:11:35 AM »
My children go to NO Catholic school , they are dime a dozen here.  I had the same issues you had except none of my children had special needs.  My husband is a none practicing Catholic and wouldn't entertain homeschooling.  However he is very strong on moral ethics and has a strict no nonsense parenting style which is becoming more apparent now that our eldest is 15.
Yes the friends and the curriculum can be terrible but it really boils down to the area and the Principal.  Fortunately our principal while she does my head in would be very much leaning conservative but with all the 80's type of style, you know the choregraphed gospel songs with actions etc.  I have no fear of anything LGBT, abortion or promiscuous ideology being promoted.  The catechism is naff, weak and all sunshine and unicorns but nothing contrary to the faith has been taught.
My kids mix with the kids there.  We have established over and over again to our children that we do things differently, we follow the Latin mass and adhere to Gods laws.  Its a constant conversation with them building up an inner strength to stand for God even though we are outnumbered.  We tell them to ask God for grace to stay true to the faith, call on their confirmation graces to stand up for the Church and its laws all the while teaching them how to survive the politics of daily life with teachers and students. (hope that makes sense).   They will have to do this in adulthood anyway.
I do not know if we are doing right but its the only option for us at the moment. Honestly I can see a difference between my kids and the school kids in terms of behaviour and common sense plus maturity.  But also I can see a difference between my kids and homeschooled trad kids with mine showing undercurrent signs of being exposed to the world.
You can onlyl do the best with what you have got. 

Can I just say the socialisation in school is overrated. They are in a classroom for 6 hours under a routine, its certainly not free range.  You could look into clubs for your lo that can cater for his needs and get a better solcialisation from them.
 
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Offline Miriam_M

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #10 on: November 01, 2018, 02:05:59 AM »
I've been around a little -- both as parent and as a professional in the field.  That is, with regard to the latter, it's my job to know schools well, but especially private schools of all kinds, as I often get asked about them by my clients who employ me as a guidance counselor.  In my area, there is quite a range in the quality of Catholic schools, and within quality I include:

Catholicity in doctrine and practiced values (staff, formal policies)
Quality of curriculum and teaching staff
Priorities of parents, which are important because, as others have noted, these filter to their children.

In addition, any school can change, including radically, from one year to the next, depending on the school's leadership -- a leadership supported (or not, and in a Catholic way or not) by the local pastor if there is one. 

When I enrolled both of my children in one of the three local Catholic schools, it was the right decision for all of us.  Their father had just died, and among the three schools, this was the environment that was most warm, most financially supportive of us, and the place where academically both daughters could thrive.  The school sort of already knew us because the community did.  (That fact that I was attending a N.O. parish had to do with my husband, mostly, as he was non-Catholic.)  The older girl had also been accepted by several secular private schools, but all-in-all, this was the best choice.

We got lucky, in that I cannot say that any of my children's friends were "bad influences," and as a mother I was lucky in that my children chose their friends well -- carefully -- so if there were bad or less-than-ideal influences, those were not their intimates.  I also monitored all social situations very carefully.  Both in elementary and then later in high school, I have always known where my children were at all times.  They were never merely allowed to go over to other people's houses, etc., without advance permission.

Compared to a few of the secular privates, I would say that in elementary school, we sacrificed a few high-level academic opportunities for genuine family values, but even then, the school had sufficient academic challenges for their intellects -- both children.  And they both went on to a Catholic high school which was intellectually richer while still sufficiently grounded in values and in meaningful personal friendships, even if some of those friends were not strictly practicing Catholics, and although none of those friends were traditionalists.

I mentioned earlier the importance of the teaching and administrative staff.  This continued to be critical in high school.  I wanted to be sure that the adults were good role models and emotionally accessible; I think my decision reflected the fact that early on I recognized that as a single mother I would not be able to provide all of the parenting my children needed.

Both the elementary school and high school began changing as the younger daughter, in both cases, was nearing graduation.  She was fortunate to benefit from what both schools mostly had to offer her, but had she been much younger, I don't know that the atmosphere of either school would have suited her or me as well as it did at the time.  When I say "changing" I mean that the staff had changed, and so had the parent body.  In both cases, more materialism and secularism had crept in -- less commitment to Catholic values (setting aside traditional Catholic values).  I was glad I never had to make such a hypothetical decision, because having her older sibling at the school prevented the younger one from feeling truly alone.

I will also say that although I greatly sympathize with many of the sentiments (disappointments) voiced on this thread regarding a reliably Catholic environment, most of the secular alternatives at the time made me cringe -- all except a couple of them.  Easily three of the alternatives exuded a sophisticated, liberal, politically correct social and educational agenda.  In the face of that -- something I just could not stomach -- something that included teachers literally laughing at me when I uttered the words "Christmas,"  "Thanksgiving,"  etc., I would still probably have opted for a nominally Catholic environment even if that were my only choice.  At these other schools it was all about the Winter Solstice, "environmentalism," indigenous pagan celebrations, you name it.  The thought that my children and I would feel ridiculed and marginalized for merely identifying with American culture -- never mind Catholic culture -- was too much for me to bear.

I will also add, however, that I think the dividing line between the N.O. and Traddom has become thicker or at least more visible.  The diocese as a structure feels more hostile to Tradition and to anyone speaking about Tradition than it felt when my children were in school.  Schools seem more alert to the suggestion of Tradition and more suspicious of any such movement or preference.  I don't mean on a person by person basis (I can still often persuade people in the N.O. to come to the Latin Mass), but on an institutional or official basis.

Regarding homeschooling, that would have been a viable choice for me, given my expertise. (And I have often mentioned on SD that I am a consultant for homeschooling families.)  However, I believed then and still believe that after their father's death my children needed the social aspects of a site school even more than they needed a genuinely Catholic setting and "protection" from imperfect environments.
 
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Offline TLM424

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2018, 01:27:37 PM »
Thanks everyone for your additional replies. All of this information is helping to guide my husband and I in our decision.

Chestertonian - I agree with you 100%. You know, I never even imagined myself homeschooling my kids until we became traditional Catholics (which was before we became Eastern Catholics). We are still strongly considering it but I don't think homeschooling is even a perfect solution.

Davis Blank - I am blessed that my husband has extremely strong faith. I also have strong faith but I would say my husband's adherence to the faith is stronger than mine. I know how important this is and I thank God that he has the beliefs and faith that he does. I reached out to the classical Christian school near me and it sounds great but their program is extremely rigorous. ALL of their high school students, for example, take AT LEAST 5 AP courses. This is extremely impressive, but he mentioned that the elementary years prepare the children for this rigorous work and they usually don't have the resources to accept children with IEPs. However, it is sometimes possible, depending on the child and what their individual needs are. So, at this time we won't know if it would be a fit for him or not since we have to see how he progresses with his therapy in preschool and if an IEP will still be necessary in kindergarten.

diaduit & Miriam_M - Thank you so much for your feedback on your NO school experience with your children. Did your children also attend the NO mass while in school? I reached out to a NO school nearby and asked if my son would be required to attend mass or not. I'm hoping they say he is not required to attend, but I have a feeling they will say he is required.

I also just have a general question. Regarding trying to determine if a NO school is leaning more conservative or liberal, what is the best way to go about this?? Would a visit to the school be the best way? What questions should I ask? Should I just simply ask the principal if they are more conservative or liberal? I'm just not sure how to really find out this information. Near where I live we have "regional" Catholic schools that are for a few different parishes. Each parish used to have their own school, but as schools have been shut down over the years they have merged the schools together to make regional schools. So it's not like I can just see how liberal or conservative one church is to determine how the school would possibly be, since there are multiple parishes involved.

Thanks again everyone!
 

Offline Miriam_M

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2018, 07:13:44 PM »

diaduit & Miriam_M - Thank you so much for your feedback on your NO school experience with your children. Did your children also attend the NO mass while in school?

Mine did, and they would have had to even if they were not Catholic.  (Requirement of their school and of every Catholic school I've ever known of in the U.S.)  Catholic schools make that clear even before enrollment:  attendance at all religious events is mandatory.  In fact, when mine were students there, the non-Catholics were required to "attend" First Confession, in that they visited the confessional and received a blessing. 

Quote
I also just have a general question. Regarding trying to determine if a NO school is leaning more conservative or liberal, what is the best way to go about this??

I look to the pastor if the school is adjacent to the parish or within church grounds.  I think that's how I received my intuitive "signals" that this school was relatively safe, as Catholic schools went when my children were little.  The pastor was elderly and "old school" in many respects.  I'll emphasize again that since my children graduated from there I have seen further erosion of Catholicity within diocesan Catholic schools (not associated with a trad apostolate).
 

Offline VeraeFidei

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2018, 02:12:19 PM »
My son is only in preschool right now and won't be in kindergarten until Sept 2020 but we're trying to decide what to do regarding his education. He is currently in a developmental preschool (for special ed, speech, OT) and one of his biggest problems is being social with the other kids. He will likely have an IEP when going into kindergarten. If he is still struggling with socializing when leaving preschool I'm not sure if homeschooling would be the best solution for us, since he needs the socialization. I know you can socialize with other home schooled kids but we don't live in a big homeschooling area and I'm worried that the isolation will hurt his already difficult situation.

We definitely do not want to send our son to public school. Does anyone here send their kids to a Novus Ordo Catholic School? I know there will be difficulties with this but I was thinking that we could purchase a traditional Catholic home school subject (just on Catholicism, not the other subjects) to make sure he is learning traditional Catholicism through us while also attending the NO school. I'm also wondering about things such as evolution and the big bang theory. I'm assuming this would be taught in a NO school and I'm wondering if we could somehow opt out of that since it is against our beliefs. Finally, the NO schools near us have the students attend mass as a school on the first Friday of the month. Do NO schools typically REQUIRE mass attendance of students? One of the schools has the mass at the very end of the day and then the kids are dismissed right after mass so I'm thinking maybe I could pick him up before mass every month. Either that or I will have to tell him not to receive Holy Communion.

I know many of these questions will be specific to the individual school's policy; however, I'm just wondering if anyone else has any personal experience with sending their children to a NO school and addressing some of these issues. Thank you!
I homeschool but if for some reason that were not the case, I imagine I would send my kids to public school before Novus Ordo school. It seems much easier to explain to a child that they are wrong about everything important and that there is no common ground, than for them to hear similar words and phrases and that they are only wrong about some things and only somewhat wrong about other things, and okay on some other things.
 
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Offline Davis Blank - EG

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Re: Novus Ordo Catholic Schools
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2018, 09:22:54 PM »
I agree with VeraeFidei, it will quite the greater challenge to show misunderstandings when they come from a "Catholic" teacher or "Catholic" schoolmate as compared to the pagan school system.  I can easily imagine many a "Catholic" school teaching that its merciful to let two men "marry" each other.  It will be very hard indeed for parents to show the complex distinction and prove why the "Catholic" school, which is presumed to be an authority, is actually wrong but mommy and daddy have the real Catholic understanding.  Might work in grade school, but not for teens.

The modernist "Catholicism" vs true Catholicism and all of its ramifications are so mind boggling that many SD members here have been puzzling over it for decades and some have even gone apostate.  This is an issue to be fully faced with as a well informed adult whom is well grounded in the faith, and even then apostasy is still well possible, so great is the challenge this poses.

Edit:  I add in the note that we cannot let perfect be the enemy of good.  Perfect is impossible, so we should not let flaws in whatever keep us from choosing it merely because it is not perfect.  For example, we've seen in this thread how N.O. school was the best choice for some folks given timing and circumstances.  Such may be the case for your family as well, who knows, every family is different.  My comments are aimed towards generalities as I am not you and cannot assess the situation as completely as you can.  Its a challenge we all face and its most disturbing that Catholics have any hesitation at all towards sending their children to a Catholic school.   But such are the times.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2018, 09:30:22 PM by Davis Blank - EG »
 
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