ARCHDIOCESE OPENS SECOND CENTER TO SUPPORT INCLUSIVE EDUCATION
CHICAGO (November 7, 2005) – A second center to support Catholic schools in serving students with diverse needs has been opened at St. Helen School, 2347 West Augusta Blvd, on Chicago’s near northwest side, joining Maria High School on the city’s southwest side. Both locations, open to Kindergarten through 12 th grade students, are known as Archdiocesan Centers for Inclusive Education and are under the direction of Leah Duszynski, director of inclusive education for the Archdiocese’s Office of Catholic Schools. Essential program components include diagnostic and counseling services provided through a collaborative program effort with the staff of United Stand Counseling Center, a counseling and diagnostic agency affiliated with the Felician Sisters under the direction of Kim Mis, CSSF, Psy.D.
According to Duszynski, a team of learning specialists, psychologists and counselors at the Archdiocesan Centers for Inclusive Education assess students needs. Upon completion of testing, the professional staff works on site with students and with individual teachers to modify programs to address learning problems and accommodate different learning styles. The goal is to help each student reach his or her full potential and to keep children in the classroom setting rather than placing them in an environment away from their peers. Continuing education
workshops for principals and teachers, as well as parent assistance in the form of support groups and parent classes are provided.
“Programs at St. Helen School focus on determining the individual needs of any elementary or high school student in an Archdiocesan school and providing support services both
on site and in the classroom to serve those needs,” said Dr. Nicholas Wolsonovich, superintendent of schools for the Archdiocese of Chicago. “The goal of this important initiative is to help ensure that all our students have the opportunity to benefit academically from a Catholic education. We are extremely pleased with the positive results for our students at our initial Center for Inclusive Education at Maria High School and are looking forward to another great success at St. Helen School.”
The St. Helen Center for Inclusive Education includes the Essential Learning Systems (ELS) lab, a state-of-the-art computer lab that addresses and strengthens essential learning skills. Remediation, participation in special reading programs, and counseling support for students and their families are also offered.
Both Centers for Inclusive Education at Maria High School and St. Helen are open during regular and after school hours. Additional information on the Centers can be obtained by calling the Office of Catholic Schools Inclusive Education director at 312--3893.