Curriculum at Ascension
The schools of the Archdiocese of NY are committed to providing a challenging and modern curriculum for every student. For that reason, the Archdiocese has a committee of education professionals who research, create, and share our Essential Learnings with every school. Our Essential Learnings give us a shared sense of what we teach in every school. They are based on national and state standards, and infused with Catholic Values. For more information about what goes into our Essential Learnings, please read on below:
Common Core State Standards (national): Ascension School, as a part of the Archdiocese of New York, uses the New York State Common Core Standards in English Language Arts and Literacy ( including literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects) as well as Mathematics. Building on the excellent foundation of standards states have laid, the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are the first step in providing our young people with a high-quality education. It should be clear to every student, parent, and teacher what the standards of success are in every school.
Teachers, parents and community leaders have all weighed in to help create the Common Core State Standards. The standards clearly communicate what is expected of students at each grade level. This will allow our teachers to be better equipped to know exactly what they need to help students learn and establish individualized benchmarks for them. The Common Core State Standards focus on core conceptual understandings and procedures starting in the early grades, thus enabling teachers to take the time needed to teach core concepts and procedures well—and to give students the opportunity to master them.
With students, parents and teachers all on the same page and working together for shared goals, we can ensure that students make progress each year and graduate from school prepared to succeed in college and in a modern workforce.
The standards were developed by the following criteria:
- Aligned with expectations for college and career success
- Clear, so that educators and parents know what they need to do to help students learn
- Consistent across all states, so that students are not taught to a lower standard just because of where they live
- Include both content and the application of knowledge through high-order skills
- Build upon strengths and lessons of current state standards and standards of top-performing nations
- Realistic, for effective use in the classroom
- Informed by other top performing countries, so that all students are prepared to succeed in our global economy and society
- Evidence and research-based criteria have been set by states, through their national organizations CCSSO and the NGACenter.
NYS learning standards (state): New York has been at the forefront of standards based education for many years. In fact, New York was one of the states that helped drive the nation Common Core movement and NY has been a key player in it’s development. The link above reflects the learning standards that all NY teachers have been expected to use in their classes. The standards are broad enough that they can be applied in a variety of ways, depending on the skill set of the teacher and the needs and abilities of the class. With the adoption of the Common Core State Standards, the NYS learning standards will no longer be the basis for all NY teaching. However, the influence of these standards endures in the Common Core and in many teaching practices throughout NY State.
Archdiocese Guidelines for Catechesis: The Guidelines are based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church are are designed to break down the Catechism in to manageable amounts for teachers to work with. Under the supervision of Cardinal O’Connor, the Guidelines were created to provide a framework all teachers can use to pass on the most important parts of our faith and our values.
Values Infusion: Within our Essential Learnings, there are suggestions for how Catholic Values can be incorporated into every area of the curriculum. Teachers are expected to look at every class as an opportunity to share and practice our values in addition to teaching to critical content.Values Infusion Program 2012-2013 (140)