The Notre Dame de Namur Learning Community Hallmarks describe the essential characteristics, values, and activities of a Notre Dame learning community. The Notre Dame Hallmarks emerged in response to the question from both the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur and their co-workers: “What makes our school a Notre Dame school?” The Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, in collaboration with the learning communities, began a process to explore this question. The process resulted in these “living statements” that have continued to develop and evolve in current times:
Hallmark One: Proclaim God's Goodness
We believe that God is good, and we stand firm in our commitment to honor that goodness in ourselves, in others, and in our world. We carry on the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur history and the spirit of St. Julie Billiart. We seek to live this heritage by allowing it to influence our actions in today's world. We make decisions and policies that reflect the mission and values of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.
Hallmark Two: Dignify All
We honor the dignity and sacredness of each person. We develop and appreciate relationships that respect individual differences, and we create environments that encourage the development of the whole person. We dedicate time, space and personnel in support of the individual's spiritual/personal journey.
Hallmark Three: Promote Peace
We educate on behalf of peace and justice and embody justice as a spiritual practice of reflection-action-reflection. We infuse classroom experience with global perspectives. We foster responsible global citizenship and we commit ourselves to the practice of dialogue, nonviolence, and conflict resolution.
Hallmark Four: Commit to Service
We integrate service learning into academic and co-curricular activities. We ground our service in the spiritual practice of reflection-action-reflection, and we incorporate this process into our service-learning commitments.
Hallmark Five: Embrace Diversity
We welcome people of diverse cultures, ethnicity, race, socioeconomic circumstances, gender, age, sexual orientation and faith traditions. We develop educational programs that expand our knowledge and understanding of diversity. We initiate strategies and support services that respect individual learning styles.
Hallmark Six: Create Community
We remember and honor the legacy of friendship between the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur co-foundresses, Julie Billiart and Françoise Blin de Bourdon, and we foster a spirit of friendship as foundational to our learning community relationships. We value and implement community-building activities. We design and foster collaborative processes wherever possible. We create an atmosphere of open and direct communication.
Hallmark Seven: Learn for Life
We design and implement academically excellent educational experiences that educate for life. We create curricular/co-curricular interactions that facilitate student-centered learning. We actively support the intellectual, emotional, spiritual, psychological and social growth of the members of our learning community. We provide appropriate training for leadership development. We foster educational activities that develop self-directed learners capable of self evaluation, critical thinking, and creative responses to life situations.