[Chestnut Hill, PA, March 20, 2019—] The Archdiocesan Educational Fund (archedfund.org) awarded Our Mother of Consolation Parish School (OMC) a grant in the amount of $25,700 for the 2019-20 academic year. The funded program will support the school’s new, innovative Rosetta Stone Language Program. Matthew H. McCloskey, Jr. (1893-1973), building contractor and U.S. Ambassador to Ireland (1962-64), created and funded the charitable organization in 1967 to advance Catholic education and evangelization throughout the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
OMC is seeking to educate its students in grades Pre-K through eight in a second language through a coherent, consistent and cost-effective program, facilitated by a foreign language specialist. Rosetta Stone provides a flexible e-learning solution easily integrated across all grade levels. The program will allow OMC School to develop a broader vision for the approach to teaching foreign languages and may serve as a model for other Archdiocesan schools to follow. Our Mother of Consolation Parish School anticipates that the program will be a more effective way of teaching foreign languages.
The pilot Rosetta Stone Language Program will offer OMC students an interactive and educational program for second language acquisition. This will be conducted by training teachers in the program’s use; creating a research team to identify a plan whereby data can be effectively collected and analyzed to make sure the program is staying relevant to OMC’s stated goals and objectives. In addition, the project plan will measure the dimension of languages offered, the actual delivery of the language instruction and the cost effectiveness of employing one teaching specialist who is degreed in a foreign language and can oversee the delivery of other language instruction across the school and possibly among several schools.
The school will begin implementing the Rosetta Stone Language Program at the beginning of the 2019-2020 academic year. The concept was originally conceived by OMC Board Member and Temple University Faculty member, Amy Giddings, Ph.D, in coordination with the school’s Director of Advancement, Daniel Dougherty. Professor Giddings is also an OMC parent of three bilingual children. “The research clearly shows children learn languages best when immersed at a younger age,” says Professor Giddings. “But it isn’t just about learning a second language – second language acquisition also shows demonstrated improvements in other areas such as mathematics, critical thinking, creativity, social awareness, etc. It is exciting for us to be able to offer our families not only an engaging language curriculum with online learning done in conjunction with group exercises, but also to have an ability to select from a number of languages. Early and frequent access to language learning is more and more critical to being a successful global citizen and we want this for our OMC students, as well as other students in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.”
According to Principal Patricia Sheetz, “The Rosetta Stone Language Program represents a wonderful opportunity for OMC to create a new and innovative way of delivering language instruction to our students. What is unique to this program at OMC is that Professor Giddings, one of our current parents and School Board members will be intimately involved through the creation, monitoring and evaluation of the pilot.”
Our Mother of Consolation Parish School is dedicated to the mission of educating the children of parishioners as well as others who entrust their children to its care. As an institution of Catholic education, its purpose is to teach Catholic values and to contribute to the formation of educated Christian persons who live and proclaim the message of our Lord Jesus Christ. Through a fully integrated curriculum, a qualified faculty is committed to the teaching of Catholic values that fosters the intellectual, moral and spiritual potential of students. By maintaining a strong identity as a parish school, they create a faith filled academic community that promotes mutual respect and social responsibility.
Editor’s Notes: If you would like more information on this program, please call Daniel Dougherty, Director of Advancement at Our Mother of Consolation 215-247-1060, or firstname.lastname@example.org. For information about schools in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, please visit www.aopcatholicschools.org