Detroit Catholic Central High School recently celebrated the opening of its $1 million upgraded Learning Commons, providing students with increased space for collaborative learning and continuing an overall effort to provide state-of-the-art facilities for the school’s nearly 1,000 students.
The Learning Commons is an expansion of the school’s former media center and Learning Strategies Center. Construction on the project started in May and concluded in August in time for the 2021-22 school year.
The Learning Commons was launched to help improve students' organization, time management, test-taking strategies, and note taking. The Learning Commons also allows students to engage in more peer-to-peer learning activities. Peer tutoring is a key component of life at Catholic Central, whether it is through the school’s official Shamrock Study Hall or organic, with students working together on a project or group study for a test.
“We are ecstatic at Catholic Central to launch the Learning Commons and help provide a supportive learning environment to prepare our students for life beyond high school and college,” said Catholic Central principal, Father Patrick Fulton. “The new features at the Learning Commons enable students to collaborate and encourage teamwork with one another. The space matches the modern workplace, preparing our students for whichever career path they choose.”
The LSC expansion is part of a multi-year initiative to evolve Catholic Central’s campus to always include the latest state-of-the art facilities and is the second major initiative in the school’s multi-year campus improvement plan that will upgrade academic, athletic and other extra-curricular facilities in the coming years. The first initiative, an improved school entrance on Wixom Road, was completed in the fall of 2020.
The Learning Commons and campus entrance were both funded through private donations from Catholic Central families.
“Once again, the Catholic Central community has stepped up to provide an extraordinary addition to our campus,” said Ed Turek ‘85, Detroit Catholic Central president. “We had donor support for the campus entrance expansion, now we have additional families stepping up to support the Learning Commons, and still other families committed to additional future projects. Not one dollar of tuition income has been used for our campus upgrades. We are truly blessed to have so much support for our mission.”
Mike and Kellie Ferrantino were among the major donors who supported the Learning Commons expansion. With two sons who are Catholic Central graduates, the Ferrantino family understands how the school can have a positive impact on a young man’s life.
“Kellie and I realized CC had so much more potential to expand its modalities of teaching, as many students learn in different ways,” Mike Ferrantino said. “We have always been interested in making a difference in the lives of students and we are extremely proud to be a part of the old and the newly expanded learning center at Catholic Central.”