History of the Network of Sacred Heart Schools
The chief strength, greatest asset and stongest bond of the Network of Sacred Heart Schools derives from the common heritage and common purpose which those schools together hold.
--Catherine (Kit) Collins, RSCJ (1974)
While five goals and their criterion unite the twenty-two full member schools of the Network in the United States, the schools enjoy an even wider affiliation with the people and institutions associated with the Society of the Sacred Heart in forty-one countries around the globe. This truly international character of Sacred Heart education helps to foster an important global awareness in our students as we strive to build a more just world.
The Network provides a means for mutual support and development among the schools through sharing of intellectual, spiritual and other resources in furthering the mission of the Society of the Sacred Heart. Member schools have numerous opportunities for collaboration. Faculty, staff, administrators and trustees participate in national Network workshops and seminars. Students benefit from Network summer service programs, national and international exchange programs, group conferences and opportunities to use shared technology resources (in the future including distance learning).
The Network is incorporated as a membership organization made up of the provincial team and the executive director of the Network, and the Network schools (represented by the heads of school and the chairs of the boards of trustees). The Network Board of Trustees, U.S. provincial, Network executive director and others elected by the membership, has the task of directing the life of the Network as an entity. The membership and its board are not responsible for the life of individual schools, but rather for Network programming, funding, and planning.
The Network is served by its executive director, a director of technology and global integration and a business manager. Standing committees of the Board of Trustees are: finance, formation to mission, membership and committee on trustees. Faculty, staff, administrators and trustees from Network schools serve on these committees.
1972 Catherine (Kit) Collins, RSCJ, appointed to be national coordinator of Sacred Heart Schools
1973 First national meeting of heads of Sacred Heart schools that included headmistresses, upper, middle and lower school heads
1975 Goals & Criteria approved
1978 Network Commission on Goals appointed by the Interprovincial Board (IPB)
1982 First Trustees’ Conference held in Washington, D.C.
1988 Meeting of board chairs, heads and provincial team Executive committee elected for strategic planning
1990 Goals and Criteria revised
1991 NCOG training process shifts from training visiting committees to training steering committees
1991 First Network Board of Trustees elected by heads, chairs and provincial team
1997-1998 Revision of Bylaws
• Authority rests in the membership, not the provincial, executive director or Network Board
• Program Committee becomes a committee of the Board
• Head of SHCOG becomes an ex officio member of the Program Committee
2000 International meetings of the heads in Joigny, France
2002 International meetings of the heads in Sydney, Australia
2005 Goals and Criteria revised
2007 International Heads Meeting in St. Charles, Missouri
2007 Global Education Plan approved
2008 Formation to Mission Plan approved
2011 International Heads Meeting in Pali, Taiwan
The Executive Directors of the Network
1972-1984 Catherine (Kit) Collins RSCJ, National Network Coordinator
1984-1995 Susan Maxwell RSCJ, Executive Director
1995-1996 Jan Dunn RSCJ, Interim Director
1996-1999 Paula Toner RSCJ, Executive Director
1999-2003 Marsha Whelan, First Lay Executive Director
2003- Madeleine Sophie Ortman, Executive Director
Locations of Office
1972-1982 Provincial House of the Washington Province on Commonwealth Avenue, in Newton, Massachusetts
1982-1992 Small house on campus of Newton Academy in Newton, Massachusetts
1992-2003 860 Beacon Street, Newton, Massachusetts
2004- 700 North Third Street, St. Charles, Missouri