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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
October 22, 1993     The Message
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October 22, 1993

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'" I Vincennes Catholic Schools: 3 more years BY PAUL R. LEINGANG spread quickly through the Message editor ',i'l . day meeting Oct. 1;i an ,ht At the meeting were parish Uncils from Old Cathedral, aered Heart, St. John the and St. Vincent de s. Meeting with e councils in the morning ere several members of a COmmittee who have gathering and analyzing the past year. ting the meeting rt L. Boyd and R. Ulm, who have l.avolved in the study and since it began ago. Gerald hylli:" Gettelfin- Beshears, of Catholic Were present dur- presentation and dis- members spent the :vewing documents ation. During the ;hey worked to- the areas of and areas where remained. among the questions re. area of school "ment Was reached in as  that some- be done, that a that finances at numbers were he planning there should school of some Vincennes. ion of a an, the councils sensus on a modi- a three.year com- ae pastors of together the fol- SGvh Cuncils met incent's along etteIiinger and to discuss the te Vincennes ?as a consensus P that the pre- Grade n Open for a during will be regu- COnsisting of rep- ot p.arish council board mere- and Some school and develop aluation of the the COnsensus community. The pastors -- Fa- thers Donald Ackerman, James Blessinger, Robert Bult- man and Albert Scheller read the prepared statement from the pulpit during week- end Masses in their parishes. Father Ackerman, dean of the Vincennes Deanery and pastor of St. John the Baptist Church, is the designated spokesperson in all matters concerning the school study. He contacted Msgr. Roman Vollmer, who was filling in at St. Thomas Church in Knox County, to communicate the decision to the members of that parish. (Father Francis Allega, pas- tor of St. Thomas Church was hospitalized over the week- end.) Franciscan Sister Carol Ann Mause, principal of the Vin- cennes Catholic Schools, con- tacted teachers and staff to in- form them of the consensus reached by the councils. On Friday before the meet- ing, Students at Flaget and Rivet had prayed for the con- tinuation of their schools. After the decision was announced at the two buildings on Monday morning, prayers were offered in thanksgiving. Flaget Elementary School is a pre-kindergarten through Grade 5 facility. Rivet Junior and Senior High serves stu- dents in grades 6 through 12. Enrollment at Flaget is 270 (72 of that total are enrolled in the pre-kindergarten pro- gram). Current enrollment at Rivet is 156. What led up to the deci- sion? At the request of the Vin- cennes Catholic School Board last year, Bishop Gettelfinger hired a team of facilitators to gather information. They as- sembled facts and statistics about the school and the com- munity, about the Catholic population and the total popu- lation, and about finances. A study committee of the Vincennes Catholic Commu- nity was formed to evaluate the information gathered and to consider strengths, weak- nesses, and possible directions to take. The information which was gathered and analyzed was presented to the parish coun- cils of the Vincennes Catholic Community so that a decision could be made. The parish councils received a 92-page document entitled, "A Comprehensive Study of the Demographics, General Educa- tion, Religious Education, Fa- See VINCENNES page 2 Dr. Gregory Ulm clarifies a point in the discussion of parish councils from Old Workshops planned on family leave act, exposure to blood borne pathogens By PAUL IL LEINGANG Message editor Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfin- ger has written to priests, pas- tors, pastoral life coordinators, principals and others in the diocese "who have the respon- sibility for the supervision of others in the employment of the Catholic Diocese of Evans- ville." The letter called attention to two items -- the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, and some provisions of the Occupa- tional Health and Safety Act concerning blood borne pathogens. Bishop Gettelfinger said in the letter that "It is the policy of the Catholic Diocese of Evansville to comply with fed- eral regulations designed to protect employees in the work- place." He continued, "We must therefore know clearly our responsibilities toward our employees." The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 came into ef- fect Aug. 5. This new federal legislation requires that spe- cific types of unpaid leave be made available to employees. The bishop said that the dio- cese will comply with the pro- visions of the FMLA beginning Jan. 1, 1994. If questions arise about compliance with this pol- icy prior to Jan. 1, "decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis," he said. Employers covered by the Occupational Health and Safety Act are required to un- dertake specific precautions against occupational exposure to blood borne pathogens. The human immuno-deficiency virus (HIV) and the hepatitis B virus (HBV) are among them The OSHA standard covers any employee whose job re- quires occupational exposure to blood or other potentially in- fectious material. For example, any employee who is assigned to provide emergency first aid might have such occupational exposure. The responsibilities of an employer include the establish- ment of an exposure control plan and the posting of certain information. An employer must also make the hepatitis B vac- cine and vaccination series available to an employee whose assigned tasks involve occupational exposure. Workshops are being planned later this fall for those responsible for complying with the FMLA and the require- ments of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The Office of Catholic Edu- cation is planning the work- shop on blood borne pathogens; the Chancery is planning the workshop on the FMLA.