New RE program to inspire future Catholic leaders


​(From left) ACU Associate Professor Janeen Lamb and Mark Craig and Paul Blom from BCE’s IMARE team and ACU’s Associate Professor Bill Sultmann and Dr Peter Ivers

​BRISBANE Catholic Education (BCE) has launched a pilot senior school Religious Education (RE) program to help inspire the next generation of Catholic leaders.

Religion, Meaning and Life (RML) is an innovative, student-centred program responsive to student diversity, multiple learning priorities, family preference and system expectations in line with the vision and mission of the Catholic school.

More than 10 schools across the Archdiocese of Brisbane will take part in the pilot of RML, which aims to meet the diverse needs of students in the senior secondary years.

BCE will invest significant resources to prepare RML teachers for the classroom.

BCE Executive Director, Pam Betts said: “Within a context of inclusion, religious pluralism, student agency, equity and authentic provision, Religious Education within the Catholic school is challenged to be responsive to needs and respectful of the faith tradition that inspires it".

BCE Deputy Executive Director, Dr Doug Ashleigh, paid tribute to the Identity, Mission and Religious Education (IMARE) team who developed the program and identified its potential contribution to deep learning.

He said the program offered, “a meaningful and relevant RE option that sought to be consistent with quality pedagogy and content informed by the Catholic Tradition”. 

BCE collaborated with Australian Catholic University (ACU) La Salle Academy staff, including Associate Professors William Sultmann and Janeen Lamb and ACU Faculty of Theology and Philosophy’s Senior Lecturer, Dr Peter Ivers, to develop the program review.

Dr Sultmann said BCE’s RML program was being supported by many.

“Our La Salle Academy role is to offer some additional and independent support and review of the programme as it takes shape.,” he said.

Dean of the La Salle Academy, Professor Brother David Hall indicated the privilege and responsibility of the academy in undertaking the comprehensive two-year review.

He said it included: “the identification of teacher perspectives on the development and implementation of the program; an assessment of program influences on student development; its alignment with parent expectations; and its capacity to inform on-going mechanisms and approaches to evidence-based reporting of RE outcomes”.

“The partnership between ACU and Brisbane Catholic Education in sponsoring and developing the pilot program was identified as indicative of our commitment to shared mission,” he said.​

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