The Department of Education of the Diocese of Erie has announced that Father Michael P. Ferrick has been appointed president of the newly formed Elk County Catholic School System (ECCSS).
According to a news release, Bishop Donald W. Trautman, S.T.D., S.S.L., named Ferrick as president based on a recommendation of the system's board of directors and following approval at a Jan. 25 meeting by the ECCSS "Members of the Corporation," comprised of the Most Rev. Donald W. Trautman, S.T.D. S.S.L., bishop of Erie; Rev. Nicholas J. Rouch, S.T.D., vicar for education; Msgr. Charles Kaza, vicar for the Eastern Vicariate; Fr. Michael Ferrick, pastor of Queen of the World Parish, St. Marys; Fr. Meinrad Lawson, O.S.B., pastor of St. Mary's Parish, St. Marys; Fr. Thomas Tyler, dean of the St. Marys Deanery; Fr. Eric Vogt, O.S.B., pastor of Sacred Heart Parish, St. Marys; and Mr. C.J. Kogovsek, chairperson of the ECCSS Board of Directors.
"Father Ferrick is a fine priest who has earned the respect of his parishioners and the St. Marys community, â€ś Trautman said. â€śHe is deeply committed to Catholic education and will lend a steady hand to the many aspects of the transition to the new system. He is fair-minded and respectful of all. I thank him for accepting this important responsibility.â€ť
As president, Ferrick will act as the administrative head of ECCSS. His chief responsibility will be "the effective operation of the system as a Catholic educational institution." He will continue his normal duties as pastor of Queen of the World Parish.
Ferrick noted that the new system will better address Catholic education in the area and will be more efficient.
"It will make us stronger," Ferrick said.
He explained that under the new system, there will be one finance office, one advancement office and one administrative office.
"We're eliminating a lot of duplication of services. We're streamlining our administration," Ferrick said.
He said right now he is working on getting the administration set up. As president, he will work closely with the system's chief financial officer and chief advancement officer, who have yet to be named.
As part of its formation, the new system has also issued a non-discrimination policy which reads, "The Elk County Catholic School System does not discriminate against any qualified student or employee because of race, color, religious creed, national origin, ancestry, disability or age, as required by law in the administration of its educational or hiring policies, admission procedures, financial aid/scholarship awards and/or any other school-administered programs."