Catholic Social Teaching Regarding Catholic Schools
According to Documents of Vatican II regarding Catholic schools, 'the influence of the Church in the field of education is shown in a special manner by the Catholic school. No less than other schools the Catholic school pursues cultural goals but its proper function is to create a special atmosphere animated by the Gospel spirit of freedom and charity, to help youth grow as the new creatures they were made by baptism. Part of its function is also to order the whole of human culture to the news of salvation.
The Catholic school, open to the contemporary world, promotes the good of the earthly city, and prepares students for the service in the spread of the Kingdom of God. Since the Catholic school can foster the dialogue between the Church and mankind, to the benefit of both, the Council proclaims the right of the Church to conduct schools of every type and level. Therefore teachers must recognize that the Catholic school depends on them to fulfill its goals. For example, they must be prepared in secular and religious knowledge, and in pedagogy in keeping with contemporary standards. Teachers must recognize the need to bear witness by their lives, work as partners with parents, give due consideration for the difference of sex, stimulate students to act for themselves and assist them after graduation with advice, friendship and by establishing associations.
As for Catholic parents, the Council calls to mind their duty to entrust their children to Catholic schools, when and where this is possible, to support schools to the extent of their ability and to work along with them for the welfare of their children.
To this concept of a Catholic school, all schools dependent on the Church must conform as far as possible, though the Catholic school is to take on different forms in keeping with local circumstances. The Church holds dear those Catholic schools attended also by students who are not Catholic. Though primary and secondary schools must still be fostered, importance needs to be given to professional and technical schools, centers for educating adults, and promoting social welfare, for the retarded, schools for preparing teachers for religious instruction and other types of education.
Pastors and the faithful are asked to spare no sacrifice in helping Catholic schools to fulfill their functions more perfectly and especially in caring for the poor and those without family, and those who are not Catholic.' [Retrieved from Texts "Outlines of the 16 Documents of Vatican II-1962-1965]