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ACE Partners with the American Indian Catholic Schools Network

Theo Helm on Thursday, 19 January 2017.

American Indian Catholic Schools Network ACE PartnershipPhoto courtesy of Creighton University and the American Indian Catholic Schools Network

The University of Notre Dame’s Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) has embarked upon a new partnership with the American Indian Catholic Schools Network (AICSN).

The collaboration allows ACE to work with the staffs of five Catholic mission schools and help the 1,300 students and their families along their educational journeys.

“This is an opportunity that fits beautifully our mission of transforming Catholic schools, particularly for under-represented students,” said Rev. Timothy R. Scully, C.S.C., the Hackett Family Director of Notre Dame’s Institute for Educational Initiatives. “We are working with AICSN to strengthen and sustain schools that offer the best educational opportunities for the children they serve.”

The partnership started Jan. 1 and is funded by a grant from the Better Way Foundation. ACE is working with AICSN to provide professional development, build governance structures for the network and grow the enrollments of the schools.

“We will be able to bring the tremendous expertise of ACE to a new audience that in most cases is remote,” said Dr. Brian Collier, the coordinator of supervision for ACE Teaching Fellows and the director of the collaboration with AICSN. “This effort is led and overseen by Native peoples from the mission schools themselves, and those of us at Notre Dame will serve as resources for the schools.”

AICSN started in 2013 with the help of the Better Way Foundation and Creighton University in an effort to bring shared success in professional development, school communications and financial sustainability.

Member schools in the network are St. Charles Mission School, San Carlos, Arizona; St. Michael Indian School, St. Michaels, Arizona; De La Salle Blackfeet School, Browning, Montana; St. Augustine Indian Mission School, Winnebago, Nebraska; and Red Cloud Indian School, Pine Ridge, South Dakota.

The schools serve students representing the Apache, Navajo, Blackfeet, Winnebago, Omaha, and Lakota peoples.

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