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#377459 - 03/13/12 03:24 AM Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school
hmjd Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 28
Loc: Houston, Texas
Dear all,

I'm sorry if this is in the wrong section. Here's my question + set-up (& I've searched/'googled'/researched this to no avail & thus why I bother this community):

I remember strongly through reading over the years(perhaps I'm in error) that a Byzantine child, who 'has' to apply to a Roman parochial school (if there is no Byzantine equivalent)will/should/could be granted some sort of 'special' status re: admission since we are under the Pastoral care of the local Roman Bishop (I may have made several erroneous statements already in setting this up, but I'm doing this off of fallible memory) etc. i.e.: 'Your child as Byzantine here has nowhere to go, so we shall tell Roman Parish 'x' that they must admit you into school, etc..." (?)

Again, perhaps I'm terrible at searching the forums (and/or the internet in general), but I can't recover whatever documents/canon law/comments or whatever to clarity this issue for me. I'm seriously questioning my memory on this because I had no children at the time I thought I read this (and thus had no personal interest) but now that I have a son, I can't seem to find anything that addresses my concern! Again, perhaps I simply misunderstood from the beginning.

Could any of you be so kind to point me in the right direction about this? Have I simply created an erroneous memory about this? As I've already touched on, my personal interest in this issue is that I have a child - fully initiated in the Christian Mysteries - who I'd like to be admitted into a Roman Catholic school since it's the "only game in town" (aside, of course, from what he's taught at home).

Am I 'misremembering' some form of Byzantine 'affirmative action' (bad analogy I know, just trying to jog my own memory) that may/does/could exist since he'll never be a 'preferred' applicant to ANY local Catholic school (as a non-Parishioner) b/c our family is a member of our Byzantine Catholic Parish?

Hope this all makes sense. I'm not trying to 'game the system', I'm just trying to get straight on our options/realities as the system dictates currently in my area.

Regardless, I'm praying for all here during this season of 'Bright Sadness'. Thank you in advance for any help/insight you can provide.

(and to the moderators - if I've placed this in the wrong section or whatever - please move & I apologize!)

- hmjd


Edited by hmjd (03/13/12 03:26 AM)
_________________________
"A fire broke out backstage in a theater. A clown came out to inform the public. They thought it a jest - and applauded. He warned them again - they shouted even louder! In this way I believe the world will come to an end, amid all the wits who think it is a joke."

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#377460 - 03/13/12 03:34 AM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
StuartK Offline
Member

Registered: 11/09/01
Posts: 7394
Loc: Falls Church, VA
Each diocese has its own policy in this regard. It is true in the Diocese of Arlington, VA, but your mileage may vary. Eastern Catholic Associates (the caucus of Eastern Catholic bishops in the USCCB) put out a document in which they urged their Latin brethren to adopt such a policy, but to the best of my knowledge, nothing has been done to make it uniform across the United States.

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#377465 - 03/13/12 07:46 AM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
Irish Melkite Offline
Global Moderator
Member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 9932
Loc: Massachusetts
hmjd,

I'd agree with Stuart. There are Latin dioceses (not a lot) where, if it's not written 'policy', it's at least the norm - that the parish schools will accept our children under the same conditions that they accept their own. (This, of course, generally means paying tuition in lieu of/equivalent to what they expect that their own parishioner parents contribute to the parish - and that's often not inexpensive these days.)

I strongly suspect that it's most likely to be the case in those places where the local Latin bishop has close ties with one or more of his Eastern brothers. And, if I had to guess, I'd suspect that smaller Latin jurisdictions might be more inclined in this way, since their bishops are more likely to 'know' the local Eastern Catholic priest.

By the way, you're not 'under the pastoral care of the local Roman bishop', unless you belong to one of the Churches which has no hierarchs of its own in the US.

Many years,

Neil
_________________________
"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."

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#377475 - 03/13/12 12:17 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
JimG Offline
Member

Registered: 05/20/10
Posts: 343
Loc: Texas USA
Have you checked with Larry Monk. He teaches at a Roman Catholic school in Houston and in a member of St. John Chrysostom Church so he should have a pretty good idea how the RC schools work there.

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#377479 - 03/13/12 12:49 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
JEK Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/12
Posts: 278
Loc: USA
Dear hmjd,

I can only speak from personal experience but my sisters son (BC) attended a Roman Catholic Parochial grammar school, there was no problem at all and no special requirements, need to get any permissions from a pastor, etc., etc.

However, there was no BC parochial school he could have attended (at least I would say for an easy 70+ miles away) but, as I recall at the "meet and greet" meeting first held before the children were registered, no notice was made of it when mentioned it to the Sister who was the Principal.

The only thing different was allowance was made for the fact he did not have to attend confirmation classes as he was Byzantine Catholic and therefore, confirmed already (he loved that part, he was able to leave school early as it was the last class of the day grin Also, when things were performed in a different way (i.e. communion in the hand) my sisters boy just kind of ignored that and went with what he knew (i.e. just opened his mouth).

Lastly, I really never heard of any parochial school in my area turning anyone away if they are not a member of the attached church (if that was the case my sisters boy would never have been admitted), also, many parochial schools also have a "a fair ability to pay" program wherein those who have limited means can send their children to the parochial school and work out what they can pay tuition wise, etc. I would think it all depends upon the particular parochial school so you may wish to consider looking around at a few in your area to compare any differences.

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#377491 - 03/13/12 02:33 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
Deacon Robert Behrens Offline
Jessup B.C. Deacon
Member

Registered: 03/16/06
Posts: 1351
Loc: Jermyn, Pa.
In the Roman Catholic Diocese of Scranton, education has been "kicked up" to the diocesan level, becuase parish-based schools were no longer economically viable. Every parish in the diocese has an annual tax to pay in support of diocesan schools. My daughter, now a college student, attended both grammar and high schools in that system. This is also true of my son, who is now a junior in a Scranton diocesan high school. Every year, we recieve the breakout in tuition costs. They carve up families into three categories: (1.) Roman Catholic (member of a Scranton diocesan parish), (2.) "Other Catholic", primarily a designation for Eastern Catholics-our area includes Ruthenian, Ukrainian and Melkite Byzantines, along with Maronites., and (3.) "Non-Catholic". Tuition is lowest for "Roman" Catholics, a little more expensive for "Other" Catholics, and highest for "Non-Catholics". In the case of our parish, years ago, around 1990, we had a school, but it was closed for economic reasons. The pastor at the time made the decision to join with seven local Roman Catholic parishes who were closing their schools, to form an academy which covered all eight parishes. Although it is now a Scranton diocesan school, it is bi-ritual. Our kids (from our parish, and any other Byzantine Catholic students) are taught "Byzantine religion", along with "RC religion". The entire school body attends liturgical services according to both Byzantine and Roman usages. On Holy Days that are indigenous to us, the whole school attends our Holy Day celebration in our church. Otherwise, on common Holy days, everybody goes to the Roman Church. Our cantor's wife teaches music at the school, and has formed a Byzantine choir, comprised mostly of RC students. They sing at Byzantine Divine Liturgies. Because of our parish's participation in the foundation of the school, and because our parish kicks in a monthly tax to support the school, we are afforded the privilege of paying tuition as if we were "Roman" Catholics, even though we are "Other".

Deacon Robert

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#377493 - 03/13/12 02:39 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: Deacon Robert Behrens]
JEK Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/12
Posts: 278
Loc: USA
Deacon Robert:

Thank you for your insites into other areas regarding the parochial schools. I suppose my sister was very blessed, she was able to participate in the "ability to pay" program as were others (even students who were non-Catholic), I do not recall any other form of amendments to the tuition structure, it was one price for all and, the ability to pay program which again, was open to everyone.

Thanks for your insites!

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#377514 - 03/13/12 06:34 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
Paul B Offline
Member

Registered: 11/11/01
Posts: 1732
Loc: PA
Our parish (and neighboring parishes) have had children attend the local RC school. They are very accommodating with regard to tuition, but there are strings attached. Some of the parishes informally want you to belong to their church.

In other cases the students and parents are expected to participate in fundraising (that's fair.) Unfortunately its usually at their EC parish's expense, because they "already helped out" at the school. Most of the parents have their kids skip the EC religious formation classes because they "already attend." So they end up genuflecting and making the Sign of the Cross the Roman way when they attend their proper parish. By the time they graduate they are basically Roman Catholic.

It doesn't HAVE to be that way, the parents can attend conferences to be sure our traditions are respected, but most parents just go along, wanting to belong and not stand out. We lose well over half of the children who attend RC schools.

That's the way it is in my section of western Pennsylvania (Erie Diocese.)

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#377522 - 03/13/12 09:28 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: JEK]
Deacon Robert Behrens Offline
Jessup B.C. Deacon
Member

Registered: 03/16/06
Posts: 1351
Loc: Jermyn, Pa.
Rather than an "ability to pay" program, the State of Pennsylvania has an "EITC" setup which allows businesses to make tax-free contributions to entities formed to benefit parochial schools, amongst other organized bodies. You can apply for tuition assistance from these entities. We have done so in the past, and have received aid. It's the next best thing to a "voucher program" (we recently elected Republican legislative Houses and a Republican Governor-"voucher" legislation is in the works-when the Democrats were in control, such legislation never saw the light of day-they are in the pockets of the teachers' unions).

Dn Robert

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#377523 - 03/13/12 09:39 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: Deacon Robert Behrens]
JEK Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/12
Posts: 278
Loc: USA
Thank you for your comments Deacon Robert, I do not reside in your state but have to say the program here worked very well (at that time as I recall it) without any form of state, local or business interaction.

As for the teachers, I dont really know, I do know the parochial school teachers were paid much less (and probably still are) than the public school teachers but were devoted to what they were doing by their choice to teach in a parochial school vs. a public school.

Thanks for your comments and for enlightning me on how things work in Pennsylvania!

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#377529 - 03/13/12 11:37 PM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
hmjd Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 28
Loc: Houston, Texas
Wow. I've been swamped today so I'm just being able to check in. I've scanned the first few responses, and look forward to reading the rest when I've more time.

Thank you!

(and to an earlier post - Larry Monks and I are friends, but his expertise is on the high school level. I'll hit him up for any potential further insight though)
_________________________
"A fire broke out backstage in a theater. A clown came out to inform the public. They thought it a jest - and applauded. He warned them again - they shouted even louder! In this way I believe the world will come to an end, amid all the wits who think it is a joke."

Top
#377581 - 03/15/12 12:19 AM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
Deacon John Montalvo Offline
Moderator
Member

Registered: 11/04/01
Posts: 1630
Loc: Scottsdale, AZ
In the metropolitan Phoenix area, there is no definitive policy regarding Eastern Catholics and their admission to Latin Catholic parochial schools.

At the parochial level, I know of various tuition scales.

First, there is the in-parish Catholic, out-of-parish Catholic, and non-Catholic tuition plans. For the in-parish plan the family must be registered and tithing to qualify for this lowest tuition scale. For the out-of-parish tuition plan (a liitle higher cost of tuition), the family must be registered in a Catholic parish and regular tithers. Non-Catholics pay the highest rate of tuition.

Second, a number of parochial schools have eliminated the in-parish/out-of-parish distinction. Any Catholic family (Latin or Eastern) may apply for admission and pays the same cost of tuition. A break is given if the family is registered in any Catholic (Latin or Eastern) parish and contributes regularly to their respective parishes. This is verified by a letter signed by the appropriate pastor. A growing number of parochial schools have adopted this model, so that families would not cross register at another parish to qualify for in-parish tuition.

At the high school level, the Jesuits charge the same rate for Catholics and non-Catholics, no discounts given, unless the family pays the total cost of tuition before the beginning of the school year. That qualifies for a 3% discount.

At the diocesan all-girls' college prep that my daughters have attended, discounts are given for registered, active and contributing members of any Catholic (Latin or Eastern) parish. Again, this is verified by a form provided by the school and filled out by the respective pastor. If the form is not filled out, then the family pays a higher rate. Non-Catholic families pay the highest rate for tuition.

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#377586 - 03/15/12 03:20 AM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: hmjd]
StuartK Offline
Member

Registered: 11/09/01
Posts: 7394
Loc: Falls Church, VA
A three percent discount? Those are the same open-handed Jebbies I knew when I was going to Georgetown--easily the stingiest major university when it comes to student aid.

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#378940 - 04/20/12 02:47 AM Re: Byzantine child applying to Roman Catholic Parish school [Re: Deacon Robert Behrens]
dochawk Offline
Member

Registered: 11/22/07
Posts: 933
Loc: Las Vegas
Originally Posted By: Deacon Robert Behrens
Rather than an "ability to pay" program, the State of Pennsylvania has an "EITC" setup which allows businesses to make tax-free contributions to entities formed to benefit parochial schools, amongst other organized bodies.


Unless it's changed in the last six years, it's a 90% tax credit for business contributions to the Starr Fundaton (?), which grants the scholarships.

When I was out there, the criteria was something like $30k+$10k per household member. anyone below that received at least 20%. One of my students paid $50/semester for her child after the scholarship.

hawk

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