Pope Francis calls us to create a culture of encounter. He tells us, “This is important: to get to know people, listen, expand the circle of ideas. The world is crisscrossed by roads that come closer together and move apart, but the important thing is that they lead towards the Good.”
Working together on the frontiers of education, AVLI is partnering with schools on hybrid learning programs to connect students, classrooms, and expertise. Learn more about our two forward focused approaches below.
Arrupe Bridges Project
A Collaborative Classroom Initiative
What It Is
A virtual ecosystem for school-inspired classes that combines collaboration, quality teachers, strong pedagogy, and the creative use of technology to reach and embolden young people.
Some schools have what other schools need.
Some schools have promising programs that would benefit from a larger and/or diversified audience.
Some schools want to explore new delivery models that will make them more efficient and effective.
Some schools have an apostolic or global citizenship agenda they are looking to fulfill.
What AVLI Provides
A large network of member schools filled with quality teachers.
A proven pedagogical approach, technology platform, and support system.
Proof-of-concept for a hybrid, collaborative course design to connect schools and engage students.
An openness to learn, and an eagerness to serve.
How it Works
Arrupe Bridges offers new modes of communication between teachers, students, and schools. Students meet and work with classmates from their respective schools in preparation for combined class meetings featuring the teacher and students from both schools. Teachers and students interact asynchronously and synchronously as students work toward completing course outcomes.
In a Bridges course, teachers engage students unencumbered by the strictures of physical classrooms. Time and place no longer restrict collaboration as teachers and students work together despite differences in schedule and time zone. Students participate in live Zoom meetings, chats, and local class meetings, and asynchronously through discussion boards, collaborative assignments, and peer-to-peer feedback.
Teachers challenge students with authentic assessments whereby students prepare for and engage in debates with their partner school, collaborate on literary analysis essays, or even create and produce their own movies highlighting local cultural artifacts. The Bridges format encourages effective formative and summative feedback cycles encouraging a growth mindset for teacher and student alike.
"It is a thrill and a privilege to watch students as they develop, through independent study and group interactions, a sophisticated vocabulary for discussing the great diversity of human culture and their place within it."
Dr. Taiko Haessler, Bridges Teacher - Arrupe Virtual
"Being able to learn at my own pace with more relaxed deadlines and larger, more involved assignments makes me a lot less stressed and allows me to better organize. Bridges challenged me to budget my time, and I was rewarded when I did."
Nick P., Bridges Student
FLUENCY Language Learning
Foreign Languages Unlocked: Engaging Network, Collaboration, and Youth
To build a model for high school language learning that leaves no willing student behind in the singular quest for fluency.
From climate change to international trade to migrancy to human rights and more, we live in a complex and interrelated world. Global problems require global leadership. Our ability to communicate with one another has never been more important. Yet, in the United States, only 20% of K-12 students and 7.5% of college students study a foreign language. It is important, then, that we ensure a high quality experience for those engaged in language learning, as well as to provide other students a compelling vision and opportunity to make language learning appealing.
Among the various school disciplines, world languages present schools with a unique set of challenges that often lead to suboptimal utilization of teachers, uneven student experiences and outcomes, and program continuity concerns.
(Targeting Fall 2024)
Using our network of 90+ Catholic high school partners across North America, we intend to gather a team of leaders, language teachers and experts to create a model for high school language learning that leaves no willing student behind in the singular quest for fluency.
The teachers and leaders we engage in the process will be the very best in our network, highly effective in attaining positive student outcomes and oriented toward growth and improvement. Beyond important conversations regarding program infrastructure, frameworks, timing, sequencing, technologies, design, and teacher professional development, the team will explore more nuanced issues of accountability, assessment, school reporting, student-teacher social contracts, harnessing student motivation, and specific targeted student skill building.
Why Focus on Fluency?
Guaranteeing fluency to program participants elevates expectations and attracts excellence. Fluency is a desirable, concrete, and measurable standard of quality. It serves as the “bullseye” for the program design team, FLUENCY program teachers, and participating schools, students, parents, and other stakeholders. Fluency provides for a skills-based approach where regular assessment produces actionable data to continually improve student performance and program design.
The Value of FLUENCY
Schools win. The FLUENCY initiative elevates schools’ world language programs by providing a unique, reliable, high quality learning option. Schools could use FLUENCY to complement current programs, add new language options, or offboard a struggling language to focus internal resources on high impact programs.
Students win. For those up to the challenge, FLUENCY will provide a pathway to documented second language proficiency. Students will meet, learn, and share with other students possessing the same language interest, and they will gain important learning and life skills. In short, they will receive the lifetime gift of bilingualism.
Want to get your school involved?
Through capitalizing on the power of the online environment, we aim to provide school-inspired collaborative programming to advance Catholic secondary education. Whether it be one or both of these programs, see how your students could benefits from such unique opportunities.