As a former high school teacher in the Diocese of Charlotte, I couldn’t be more pleased to see the diocese opening a new Catholic high school, Christ the King, in the north side of the city, an area called Lake Norman, as reported here in the Charlotte Observer. Charlotte is one of (if not THE) fastest growing diocese in the country, experiencing a boom in its Catholic population, largely due to transports from the Northeast and Midwest, but also due to one of the fastest growing Latino populations in the nation.
I hope that the Diocese of Charlotte can find new ways, amidst its growth and prosperity, to effectively serve this newest wave of immigrant Catholics. As a larger banking town with a considerable amount of corporate wealth, Charlotte would seem to be a prime candidate for a number of highly effective programs that have found ways to make Catholic schools more accessible to low-income families.
Large privately funded scholarship programs like the Big Shoulders Fund in Chicago or the Fulcrum Foundation in Seattle could be very successful in Charlotte. Though it may be difficult to think of yet another high school anytime soon, the Cristo Rey model could also be successful in Charlotte with the large corporate sector in the city. A Nativity-Miguel middle school could be another interesting option.
It is a great day in the Diocese of Charlotte and great to see a community where Catholic education is expanding. May we always keep asking how we can do better and do more, particularly for the neediest families and those that can benefit most from a quality Catholic education.