Father Ryan Names Director of Houses

Father Ryan has named Amy C. Duke as the first director of houses for the school’s new House System, according to Jim McIntyre, president.

Duke comes to Father Ryan from Bishop Lynch High School in Dallas, Texas, where she helped design and implement Bishop Lynch’s house system and currently serves as the dean of the Siena House. As director of houses for Father Ryan, she will oversee the formation, implementation, and daily management of the school’s new system, which will be launched in August of 2020. Duke has begun working in concert with the administration on the system’s introduction and begins officially at Father Ryan on June 1, 2020.

“The director of houses is one of the most important parts of the Father Ryan House System introduction,” McIntyre said, “and we are very pleased to bring an outstanding educator and experienced house system leader to Nashville to direct this major initiative for Father Ryan. As a product of Catholic education and as a Catholic educator herself, Amy brings an exceptional background, in and out of the classroom, with a commitment to deepen the Father Ryan experience for all of our students, faculty, and families.”

Bishop Lynch launched its house system in August of 2019 following a two-year development, review, and implementation process. Duke played a central role in the creation of the organizational structure and programming, recruitment of mentors, and implementation of the overall system.

Duke expressed her enthusiasm for becoming a part of the Father Ryan community. “I have been looking at Father Ryan for some time and have been impressed both by its educational quality and its heart. The promise that its students will be known and loved resonates powerfully with me, and the sense of community is clearly present. During my first visit, I felt like I was at home in a building I was stepping into for the very first time. That’s why I am excited to be a part of this school and to help bring the benefits of a house system to all of our students.”
Duke will work closely with Dean of Campus Ministry and Student Life Elizabeth Elfers ’02. Elfers is enthusiastic about the program and about Duke’s arrival.
“This is the person who will be the creative voice behind the house system at Father Ryan,” Elfers said, “overseeing student leadership programs, overseeing the adult leaders, overseeing every aspect of what we believe will be a transformational initiative for our school. In Amy, we have found a person who is ideal for this responsibility. She is committed to Catholic education. She is absolutely professional in every aspect of her educational and administrative life; organized, collaborative, and outcome-focused. Her experience and her outlook will have an impact on this program and our students for years to come.”
Father Ryan announced in September that it was launching a house system for the 2020-2021 school year.

In talking about the system’s benefits, Duke commented, “Having been a part of the successful launch of the house system at Bishop Lynch, I have seen the positive impact this system has had on the lives of the students. It enhances communication among all the students, no matter the grade, and will make the many experiences available to students at Father Ryan more accessible. Most
importantly, it will foster interaction among all grade levels, with older students helping to mentor younger students, younger students feeling a real connection to the older students, and adult mentors guiding all of them. I am looking forward to helping to create these experiences and benefits at Father Ryan.”

Currently serving as the Mathematics Department Chair at Bishop Lynch, Duke has taught mathematics courses including Algebra, Geometry, Precalculus, and Trigonometry and developed curriculum and lesson plans to address multiple learning styles during her 20-year teaching career at the school. Since 2015, she has taught a number of these mathematics courses for dual credit in partnership with Eastfield College and Cedar Valley College.
Duke earned her B.A. in History at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, and her M.S. in Higher Education at Texas A & M Commerce in Commerce, Texas. She has presented at numerous educational conferences and holds membership in the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, the National Catholic Educational Association, and the American Association of University Professors.
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