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Cr e at ing A New S ta n da r d In C at hol ic Educ ation


Dear Father Ryan Family, The recent dedication of the Jim Carell Alumni Athletic Complex and Father Giacosa Stadium has been a great source of pride for all of us. The way that many people worked together with such a generous and giving spirit is a testimony to what can be accomplished. The future of Father Ryan High School is bright. The vision of it being a school built on the foundation of the Catholic faith is clear. Recent efforts to develop a strategic plan for the school which involved input from local pastors, faculty and staff, parents and students are very helpful, and needed to give a continued sense of direction to Father Ryan High School. This plan will have its effect in providing goals to reflect upon and work toward. Not all may be achievable, but they offer a vision for the future. For me, the reason for the school’s existence is to provide an educational environment in which a vision of life is shared that is centered on Jesus Christ and His teachings. The best of everything else is secondary to Father Ryan High School being able to offer our children an understanding of their lives in relationship to God. Such a vision gives them a firm foundation that will remain throughout their lives as a bedrock for lives of faith, hope and love. My thanks go out to all of you for all that you do to make Father Ryan High School the best school possible. Wishing you every blessing, I am Sincerely in Christ,

Most Rev. David R. Choby Bishop of Nashville


Cr eating A New Standar d In Catholic Education

F

or many months, beginning September 2008, a large number of individuals

Bishop Alphonse Smith in 1925 was bold enough to have a vision for a Catholic

have given much time and thought to creating a plan that will take Father

school for boys, in a largely Protestant town. The school’s immediate success

Ryan to a new level of excellence. This plan provides a vision for the next six

enabled him to take another visionary leap, and just four short years later, he

years and beyond. It is bold, and intended to elevate expectation and performance.

built the landmark Elliston Place building. Bishop James Niedergeses and Father

It is meant to challenge us and to serve as a catalyst for planning and action. It is

Pat Connor had a vision for a new campus. Many of us remember well our first

transformational by design.

reaction to the move from the historic, beloved old campus: Inconceivable. Yet here we are, and Father Ryan stands as a much greater institution than ever before.

You might ask,

But nineteen years after the move to Norwood Drive, we are at a crossroads. Over

“W hy d o t his at a l l ? ”

the last few years many things in our world have changed. And the path that Father

Very simply, because Father Ryan always has. Father Ryan has developed exceptional and involved graduates throughout its history because Father Ryan has continually responded to the changing needs of our students and the demands of a challenging society. Whether the issue was curriculum or social justice, facilities or technology, the arts or financial aid, Father Ryan has brought innovative thinking and imaginative programs into this environment. This mindset is rooted in our Catholic faith and our commitment to serve a broad spectrum of students. Its implementation has ensured that Father Ryan can prepare all students for a college experience that will further their academic development and social conscience.  

Ryan was on has taken some twists and turns. We have new leadership and a second coed school in the diocese. The marketplace has changed, our society is changing, and Catholic families have changed to believe that parochial school education is one option — it’s not a given anymore that they will send their children to Catholic schools. Our world is a global one, an increasingly diverse one, with moral choices and ethical demands we might not have imagined in our lifetimes. For Father Ryan to survive and to thrive, it must provide the very best formation possible for our students — spiritually, academically, and physically. We owe that to the students we enroll, who will inherit this changing world from us. Our school must be the clear choice to Catholic parents. Implementation of the strategic plan will lead us to that reality.


Cr eating A New Standar d In Catholic Education

F

or many months, beginning September 2008, a large number of individuals

Bishop Alphonse Smith in 1925 was bold enough to have a vision for a Catholic

have given much time and thought to creating a plan that will take Father

school for boys, in a largely Protestant town. The school’s immediate success

Ryan to a new level of excellence. This plan provides a vision for the next six

enabled him to take another visionary leap, and just four short years later, he

years and beyond. It is bold, and intended to elevate expectation and performance.

built the landmark Elliston Place building. Bishop James Niedergeses and Father

It is meant to challenge us and to serve as a catalyst for planning and action. It is

Pat Connor had a vision for a new campus. Many of us remember well our first

transformational by design.

reaction to the move from the historic, beloved old campus: Inconceivable. Yet here we are, and Father Ryan stands as a much greater institution than ever before.

You might ask,

But nineteen years after the move to Norwood Drive, we are at a crossroads. Over

“W hy d o t his at a l l ? ”

the last few years many things in our world have changed. And the path that Father

Very simply, because Father Ryan always has. Father Ryan has developed exceptional and involved graduates throughout its history because Father Ryan has continually responded to the changing needs of our students and the demands of a challenging society. Whether the issue was curriculum or social justice, facilities or technology, the arts or financial aid, Father Ryan has brought innovative thinking and imaginative programs into this environment. This mindset is rooted in our Catholic faith and our commitment to serve a broad spectrum of students. Its implementation has ensured that Father Ryan can prepare all students for a college experience that will further their academic development and social conscience.  

Ryan was on has taken some twists and turns. We have new leadership and a second coed school in the diocese. The marketplace has changed, our society is changing, and Catholic families have changed to believe that parochial school education is one option — it’s not a given anymore that they will send their children to Catholic schools. Our world is a global one, an increasingly diverse one, with moral choices and ethical demands we might not have imagined in our lifetimes. For Father Ryan to survive and to thrive, it must provide the very best formation possible for our students — spiritually, academically, and physically. We owe that to the students we enroll, who will inherit this changing world from us. Our school must be the clear choice to Catholic parents. Implementation of the strategic plan will lead us to that reality.


This concrete vision comes with several strategic issues that represent both obstacles to overcome and opportunities to seize over the course of the strategic plan’s implementation. As Father Ryan works to realize its goal of being the national measure of excellence for secondary Catholic education, we must address:

+ Student diversity and inclusivity + Preparing students for 21st century global realities + Faculty/student innovation and distinction in the arts, athletics and academics + Spiritual education and formation + Catholic community life + Attracting and retaining the best faculty and staff with salaries and benefits in line with Catholic social teaching + Culture of philanthropy

F

å

The Vision: Our Str ategic Goal

The Beginning

Starting a Catholic high school in

ollowing the evolution of the core values and core purpose, the strategic

Nashville, Tennessee in 1925. That

planners developed a vision and our strategic goal which is to be realized

was unexpected. That was bold.

by 2015. It is intended to be transformational while remaining true to the

That was controversial. But Bishop

core mission and identity of Father Ryan High School.

Alphonse J. Smith had a vision for the Diocese and the Nashville Catholic School for Boys was a

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will be nationally recognized as the measure of excellence for secondary Catholic education. 

key part of that vision. Two years

To address these issues, the Strategic Planning Oversight

later a new campus emerged and

Committee and Task Teams have developed and approved

Father Ryan was born. Bishop

supporting strategic goals for each major area. Each goal

Smith’s strategic, inspired decision

was evaluated against the questions, “Is it bold?” and “Is it transformational?” While creating a new standard in

created a high school to provide opportunities for this Catholic community, and the alumni it has

Catholic education is our ultimate goal, following this

produced throughout its histor y are

set of support goals will provide us measurements of our

testament to his wisdom. The first

progress and success.

strategic plan for Father Ryan laid the foundation for a tradition of Faith, Knowledge and Ser vice.


This concrete vision comes with several strategic issues that represent both obstacles to overcome and opportunities to seize over the course of the strategic plan’s implementation. As Father Ryan works to realize its goal of being the national measure of excellence for secondary Catholic education, we must address:

+ Student diversity and inclusivity + Preparing students for 21st century global realities + Faculty/student innovation and distinction in the arts, athletics and academics + Spiritual education and formation + Catholic community life + Attracting and retaining the best faculty and staff with salaries and benefits in line with Catholic social teaching + Culture of philanthropy

F

å

The Vision: Our Str ategic Goal

The Beginning

Starting a Catholic high school in

ollowing the evolution of the core values and core purpose, the strategic

Nashville, Tennessee in 1925. That

planners developed a vision and our strategic goal which is to be realized

was unexpected. That was bold.

by 2015. It is intended to be transformational while remaining true to the

That was controversial. But Bishop

core mission and identity of Father Ryan High School.

Alphonse J. Smith had a vision for the Diocese and the Nashville Catholic School for Boys was a

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will be nationally recognized as the measure of excellence for secondary Catholic education. 

key part of that vision. Two years

To address these issues, the Strategic Planning Oversight

later a new campus emerged and

Committee and Task Teams have developed and approved

Father Ryan was born. Bishop

supporting strategic goals for each major area. Each goal

Smith’s strategic, inspired decision

was evaluated against the questions, “Is it bold?” and “Is it transformational?” While creating a new standard in

created a high school to provide opportunities for this Catholic community, and the alumni it has

Catholic education is our ultimate goal, following this

produced throughout its histor y are

set of support goals will provide us measurements of our

testament to his wisdom. The first

progress and success.

strategic plan for Father Ryan laid the foundation for a tradition of Faith, Knowledge and Ser vice.


THIS NEW STANDARD AND ITS MEASUREMENT

T

he message you will see and hear, related to this vision, is “Creating a New Standard in Catholic Education.” Creating a new

standard in Catholic education doesn’t mean that we

å

are seeking magazine covers and national rankings. It

A Dramatic Change

means an approach to educating students, engaging our alumni and friends, enhancing our curriculum and

In 1954, Brown v. Board of Education

retaining and developing an outstanding faculty who

was decided, and segregated

demonstrates the very best of each of those educational

education was ended. But in the

aspects. It establishes Father Ryan as a leader in all of

South, acceptance was slow—except

these areas among national Catholic high schools, a

at Father Ryan. Recognizing that the school’s mission was to educate

leader on which other schools in other parts of the

the entire Catholic community,

country model themselves. And it does so while still

Father Francis Shea, principal of

holding fast to our historic foundation…providing a

the school, opened the school to

college-preparatory education in the Catholic tradition

African-Americans within months

to a wide range of students.

of the decision, becoming the first school in the state to do so. This strategic decision not only expanded

Father Ryan is a place where students build an

the student body, but also sent a

educational foundation for life – one that will serve

message of welcome to the entire

them well as they become leaders in the workplace, in

community, a message in keeping

the community and in their own families. This moment

with the principles of our faith and the traditions of the school. Eleven years later, Father Ryan played in the first athletic contest between predominantly white and predominantly black schools, changing the landscape forever. As Fr. Shea responded when asked about the African-American students, “we don’t have white students, we don’t have black students; we have only Father Ryan students.”

is an opportunity to do the same for our school – to shepherd Father Ryan into the future.


THIS NEW STANDARD AND ITS MEASUREMENT

T

he message you will see and hear, related to this vision, is “Creating a New Standard in Catholic Education.” Creating a new

standard in Catholic education doesn’t mean that we

å

are seeking magazine covers and national rankings. It

A Dramatic Change

means an approach to educating students, engaging our alumni and friends, enhancing our curriculum and

In 1954, Brown v. Board of Education

retaining and developing an outstanding faculty who

was decided, and segregated

demonstrates the very best of each of those educational

education was ended. But in the

aspects. It establishes Father Ryan as a leader in all of

South, acceptance was slow—except

these areas among national Catholic high schools, a

at Father Ryan. Recognizing that the school’s mission was to educate

leader on which other schools in other parts of the

the entire Catholic community,

country model themselves. And it does so while still

Father Francis Shea, principal of

holding fast to our historic foundation…providing a

the school, opened the school to

college-preparatory education in the Catholic tradition

African-Americans within months

to a wide range of students.

of the decision, becoming the first school in the state to do so. This strategic decision not only expanded

Father Ryan is a place where students build an

the student body, but also sent a

educational foundation for life – one that will serve

message of welcome to the entire

them well as they become leaders in the workplace, in

community, a message in keeping

the community and in their own families. This moment

with the principles of our faith and the traditions of the school. Eleven years later, Father Ryan played in the first athletic contest between predominantly white and predominantly black schools, changing the landscape forever. As Fr. Shea responded when asked about the African-American students, “we don’t have white students, we don’t have black students; we have only Father Ryan students.”

is an opportunity to do the same for our school – to shepherd Father Ryan into the future.


By 2015, the administration, in consultation with faculty, will have developed a system of annual recognition of qualities of each — outstanding faith, knowledge, and service — in individual faculty and staff as they carry out the Father Ryan High School mission. By 2015, Father Ryan High School will coordinate and consolidate financial support for all athletic teams to provide an exceptional experience for the student athlete, to limit parent and donor fatigue, engender more volunteerism, and place coaches in the best position to mentor and coach.

Mid Range: July 2010-June 2013

T

In outreach, business, and community relations, Father Ryan High School will be known as a model of inclusiveness among Catholic schools. By 2015, Father Ryan High School will provide a minimum of 10 full need-based scholarships for

he Strategic Planning Oversight Committee appointed Task Teams

socioeconomic disadvantaged students.

comprising members of the Father Ryan faculty and administration, Board of Trust members, parents, alumni, educators, and experts from

the Nashville area to address each strategic issue by formulating strategic goals. While we will work to achieve all of these goals, we have also set a priority for each,

By 2015, Father Ryan High School’s Board of Trust members, faculty, staff, administration, coaches, and

By 2015, every student at Father Ryan High School will have required and

for the community and the Diocese of Nashville.

for 45 years, only males had been

through faith, knowledge, and service.

was changing and the educational demands of our population brought

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will raise

about the merger of Father Ryan and Cathedral High School in 1970. With that decision, Father Ryan became

critical importance of philanthropy so that giving

a coeducational institution, and its

to Father Ryan becomes the rule rather than the

doors were open to the entire Catholic

exception.

population of 8th graders. The step was dramatic, but it was the result of careful

defined international cultural experiences. By 2015, Father Ryan High School, as a school, will serve as a model resource

Nashville Catholic School for Boys, and students. But the Catholic community

awareness of the entire donor community of the

Short Range: July 2009-June 2011

Father Ryan was founded as the

moderators will be living examples of the Gospels enabling us to focus on them in an order that is manageable, logical and effective in helping us reach our national standard.

Creating a Coeducational Campus

å

THE STRATEGIC GOALS AND THE PRIORITY FOR ACHIEVING THEM

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will coordinate

analysis and a growing recognition that there were powerful benefits to

and consolidate financial support for all performance

a coeducational education — more

groups to provide an exceptional experience for the

opportunities for programs, athletic

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will utilize the best technology to enable

student performer, to limit parent and donor fatigue,

competition and social development.

our students to succeed, and expect our faculty and staff to be skilled in the

engender more volunteerism, and place faculty leaders

use of this technology.

in the best position to mentor.

Forty years later the thousands of female graduates attest to the wisdom of the school’s decision.


By 2015, the administration, in consultation with faculty, will have developed a system of annual recognition of qualities of each — outstanding faith, knowledge, and service — in individual faculty and staff as they carry out the Father Ryan High School mission. By 2015, Father Ryan High School will coordinate and consolidate financial support for all athletic teams to provide an exceptional experience for the student athlete, to limit parent and donor fatigue, engender more volunteerism, and place coaches in the best position to mentor and coach.

Mid Range: July 2010-June 2013

T

In outreach, business, and community relations, Father Ryan High School will be known as a model of inclusiveness among Catholic schools. By 2015, Father Ryan High School will provide a minimum of 10 full need-based scholarships for

he Strategic Planning Oversight Committee appointed Task Teams

socioeconomic disadvantaged students.

comprising members of the Father Ryan faculty and administration, Board of Trust members, parents, alumni, educators, and experts from

the Nashville area to address each strategic issue by formulating strategic goals. While we will work to achieve all of these goals, we have also set a priority for each,

By 2015, Father Ryan High School’s Board of Trust members, faculty, staff, administration, coaches, and

By 2015, every student at Father Ryan High School will have required and

for the community and the Diocese of Nashville.

for 45 years, only males had been

through faith, knowledge, and service.

was changing and the educational demands of our population brought

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will raise

about the merger of Father Ryan and Cathedral High School in 1970. With that decision, Father Ryan became

critical importance of philanthropy so that giving

a coeducational institution, and its

to Father Ryan becomes the rule rather than the

doors were open to the entire Catholic

exception.

population of 8th graders. The step was dramatic, but it was the result of careful

defined international cultural experiences. By 2015, Father Ryan High School, as a school, will serve as a model resource

Nashville Catholic School for Boys, and students. But the Catholic community

awareness of the entire donor community of the

Short Range: July 2009-June 2011

Father Ryan was founded as the

moderators will be living examples of the Gospels enabling us to focus on them in an order that is manageable, logical and effective in helping us reach our national standard.

Creating a Coeducational Campus

å

THE STRATEGIC GOALS AND THE PRIORITY FOR ACHIEVING THEM

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will coordinate

analysis and a growing recognition that there were powerful benefits to

and consolidate financial support for all performance

a coeducational education — more

groups to provide an exceptional experience for the

opportunities for programs, athletic

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will utilize the best technology to enable

student performer, to limit parent and donor fatigue,

competition and social development.

our students to succeed, and expect our faculty and staff to be skilled in the

engender more volunteerism, and place faculty leaders

use of this technology.

in the best position to mentor.

Forty years later the thousands of female graduates attest to the wisdom of the school’s decision.


By 2015, Father Ryan High School will serve the community and the Diocese of Nashville as the model for community service among schools — in terms of the quality of the experience and the impact on the student within the Catholic tradition. By 2015, all Father Ryan High School faculty will be compensated with a total salary and clearly defined benefits package that is competitive with a designated set of peer institutions. By 2015, 80 percent of the Father Ryan High School faculty will have a master’s degree or above from an accredited institution or will be in pursuit of a master’s degree. Tuition assistance will be provided to each faculty member to achieve this goal.

Cr eating A New Standar d In Catholic Education By 2015, Father Ryan High School will create an environment, structure, and programs to elevate

Father Ryan to the top ranks of diocesan catholic giving; volunteerism; and alumni, parent, and faculty participation.

A Move From Elliston Place

å

schools nationwide, recognized for excellence in

For the vast majority of our alumni and faculty, Father Ryan meant Elliston Place. The campus and

Long Range: July 2012-June 2015

its students were forever linked. However, the link was also limiting.

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will be known for having the most

Confined by our space and facing

ethnically and racially diverse student and faculty bodies among Middle

a need for more academic space,

Tennessee Catholic Schools.

the leadership of the school and the Diocese decided to move the campus. Saying goodbye to Elliston

By 2015, Father Ryan will be recognized for annual growth in innovation

Place was difficult, but the strategic

and distinction in academics, athletics, and the arts.

plan proved the decision correct. Today’s Father Ryan affords our

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will have full participation of students in understanding and living the Catholic faith in a Christ-like manner.

students, faculty, families and alumni an expansive place for education. It provides a center for all of our communities to gather.

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will be known for the spiritual life

And it gives the school an even

of its alumni and their uniquely continuous relationship with the Father

stronger foundation to ser ve the

Ryan community.

needs of the Catholic community for many years to come.


By 2015, Father Ryan High School will serve the community and the Diocese of Nashville as the model for community service among schools — in terms of the quality of the experience and the impact on the student within the Catholic tradition. By 2015, all Father Ryan High School faculty will be compensated with a total salary and clearly defined benefits package that is competitive with a designated set of peer institutions. By 2015, 80 percent of the Father Ryan High School faculty will have a master’s degree or above from an accredited institution or will be in pursuit of a master’s degree. Tuition assistance will be provided to each faculty member to achieve this goal.

Cr eating A New Standar d In Catholic Education By 2015, Father Ryan High School will create an environment, structure, and programs to elevate

Father Ryan to the top ranks of diocesan catholic giving; volunteerism; and alumni, parent, and faculty participation.

A Move From Elliston Place

å

schools nationwide, recognized for excellence in

For the vast majority of our alumni and faculty, Father Ryan meant Elliston Place. The campus and

Long Range: July 2012-June 2015

its students were forever linked. However, the link was also limiting.

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will be known for having the most

Confined by our space and facing

ethnically and racially diverse student and faculty bodies among Middle

a need for more academic space,

Tennessee Catholic Schools.

the leadership of the school and the Diocese decided to move the campus. Saying goodbye to Elliston

By 2015, Father Ryan will be recognized for annual growth in innovation

Place was difficult, but the strategic

and distinction in academics, athletics, and the arts.

plan proved the decision correct. Today’s Father Ryan affords our

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will have full participation of students in understanding and living the Catholic faith in a Christ-like manner.

students, faculty, families and alumni an expansive place for education. It provides a center for all of our communities to gather.

By 2015, Father Ryan High School will be known for the spiritual life

And it gives the school an even

of its alumni and their uniquely continuous relationship with the Father

stronger foundation to ser ve the

Ryan community.

needs of the Catholic community for many years to come.


å

An Academic Powerhouse for Everyone Father Ryan, throughout its histor y, has focused

T

he next five years will be exciting ones for Father Ryan as we proceed with the

implementation of this strategic plan. We will be communicating with you regularly in order to keep you informed

on educating the broad spectrum of the Catholic

of its progress and the achievement of

community so that they can achieve whatever their

the many goals. We value your input

dreams provide them. The strategy was not for our

and your support and look forward to

students to get by, but to get ahead. Academic

celebrating the full implementation of

excellence and achievement are measured by the successes of all our students, not just the

the plan. We know that it will guide us

most academically oriented. In the past 40 years,

well as we continue to value, educate,

Father Ryan has introduced specific curriculum

and form students in the Catholic

strategies—from block scheduling to enhanced

faith tradition, and in the Father Ryan

language offerings, to specialized technologies

tradition of Faith, Knowledge and

like Kindles—to insure ever y student has the chance to succeed. The results? The first school in

Service.

the state to seek and receive dual accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and the Southern Association of Independent Schools (SAIS). One of the few schools with a chapter of Cum Laude. One hundred percent of the graduating classes accepted to college. Over 100 students honored by National Merit. The strategy has delivered.

A Tradition of Faith, Knowledge, Service


Father Ryan Strategic Plan