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Loretto Academy Leads Its Students To Be Global Citizens

Posted on February 1, 2020, by Pilar Gonzalez CoL

Patty Herrera, Theresa Crow,  Teresa Franco and I from the El Paso Loretto Academy elementary, middle, and high schools trained Oct. 1-2, 2019, as teacher trainers for Encounter, a new and exciting program initiated by the El Paso Diocesan schools. The training was presented by ArtEdu, an educational consultant firm based in Switzerland and Mexico. For two days teachers from all the El Paso Diocesan schools trained to be trainers. Oct. 14, the newly trained teachers led workshops at their respective campuses to train other teachers on how to incorporate the Global Citizenship and 21st Century Skills initiatives into their various curricula.

“I really enjoyed the workshop … Much of what I do falls into this method of teaching, and this training will be very helpful in my classes,” said Coral Jensen, high school art teacher.

Initial training

The initial training was at St. Joseph Catholic School and presented defining, creating and discussing various aspects of the Global Citizenship and 21st Century Skills initiatives put forth by the United Nations in its Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).  Teacher trainers created training sessions they would be presenting to their respective faculties. The U.N. SDG includes social, political, environmental and global actions to develop individuals who will engage our world for the better of all humankind. At the conclusion of the training, teachers left with an interdisciplinary lesson plan for use in their classrooms during the first semester of the 2019-2020 school year. They will continue to integrate the U.N. SDG into their existing curricula and improve their teaching as the academic year progresses.

Facing challenges

Cecilia Cortez, PE, dance and drama instructor, expressed excitement about the new program: “One of the challenges that this new program presents is how high school and middle school teachers can incorporate global citizenship aspects into every discipline. Luckily, the teachers at Loretto Academy are open to utilizing every new thing learned to make a better learning environment for our young women. I’m looking forward to the challenge!”

As the world around us changes, educators must realize that teaching cannot become stagnant. Loretto has engaged, along with the Diocese of El Paso, to educate its students by giving global citizen and 21st century context to their learning.

Strengthening relationships

Loretto teachers will attend workshops to integrate Global Citizen and 21st Century Skills initiatives into what they already teach. The workshops also will strengthen the relationship between Loretto’s three schools, providing vertical and horizontal alignment. The intention is to ensure that students are prepared for their evolving future, as they honor our four Loretto core values of faith, community, justice and respect.  The Academy will continue to provide the whole family with global citizen education, transcending generations.


Pilar Gonzalez CoL

Pilar teaches fifth-graders at Loretto Academy in El Paso, Texas. She also serves as the school’s FIRST robotics team coach.
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