Thursday May 20, 2010

Among the Best

A recent national study highlighted the University of Dayton's Urban Child Resource Center as a national model for its partnership with Catholic schools and the community.

The University of Dayton's Urban Child Development Resource Center has received national attention as an innovative program addressing the mental health needs of students in Catholic schools.

The center was one of seven Catholic programs studied by Erik Goldschmidt, program director for Boston Catholic School Connects, who researched some of the best programs in the nation and presented his findings April 6 at the National Catholic Education Association Convention in Minneapolis.

Goldschmidt said his study, titled School-based Mental Health Programs in Catholic Schools: Addressing the Needs of the Whole Child, found that the Urban Child Development Resource Center demonstrated a high-quality partnership among schools, a university and the community.

"A program like the center in which a Catholic university facilitates collaboration between Catholic schools and community organizations exemplifies how urban Catholic schools can effectively address the needs of the whole child by engaging the surrounding community,” Goldschmidt said.

Operated through the University's Center for Catholic Education, the Urban Child Development Resource Center has worked primarily with urban Catholic elementary schools since 2002. The center provides violence prevention and safety programming along with mental health counseling services through teams of therapists and social workers who work with students, families and school personnel.

"The resource center works to make children successful in the classroom by addressing issues before they can develop into problems, and working to resolve problems and conflict," said Linda Russell, director of the center. "As a part of the University of Dayton, we weave Catholic, Marianist values into the program, emphasizing the importance of community."

The center provides services to Immaculate Conception, St. Anthony, Our Lady of the Rosary and both campuses of Mary Queen of Peace. It also works with high school students at the Dayton Early College Academy, a charter school operated by the University of Dayton.

For more information visit the Urban Child Development Resource Center.

For more on the Urban Child Resource Center contact Linda Russell or Susan Ferguson at 937-229-3778. For information on the study, contact Eric Goldschmidt at erik.goldschmidt@bc.edu.